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Philanthropy Efforts, Post-Hurricane Katrina

“George Penick, president of the Foundation for the Mid South in Jackson, Mississippi, convened a gathering of foundation leaders in Memphis to begin coordinating a response to the cataclysm. Byron Harrell, president of Baptist Community Ministries in New Orleans, and Ted Alexander, president of the Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation in Picayune, Mississippi, were among the first philanthropic leaders to begin sharing detailed accounts of the devastation and calling for financial and other support from the foundation field. Both regional and national grant-makers responded generously to these and other solicitations. Penick and Lehfeldt co-hosted a national conference call to share information, and during the following months Lehfeldt paid several visits to the hurricane-damaged region to meet with SECF members and donor associations.35 Reflecting on the events of that period, he took note of the importance of the region having a philanthropic infrastructure to facilitate communication and collaboration.”

Excerpted from The Liberating Promise of Philanthropy.

Anna T. Jeanes

“The Northern antislavery movement had some of its deepest roots among members of the Society of Friends, or Quakers, in Philadelphia. One Quaker philanthropist, Anna T. Jeanes, in 1905 created a trust, the Negro Rural School Fund, to assist schools in Southern states. Administered by the General Education Board, the fund’s primary thrust was the employment of so-called Jeanes Supervisors, African American industrial supervision instructors who emphasized vocational education and school improvement. By 1910 there were 129 Jeanes Supervisors working as education circuit riders in 130 counties in 13 Southern states. They were teachers, to be sure, but they also functioned as experienced, strategic dynamos who were remarkably effective at assessing, inspiring, and leveraging community resources to raise education standards.”

Excerpted from The Liberating Promise of Philanthropy.

William C. Archie, Father of the SECF

“Dr. Archie, a former professor of romance languages who had been dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at both Wake Forest University and then Emory University, was a bluff and forceful leader. (Some colleagues described him affectionately as a bull that carried his own china shop with him.) Soon after the Tax Reform Act went into effect in the spring of 1970, he quickly reached out to other foundation leaders in the region and invited them to a meeting in Atlanta. After what was later described to Hull as a weekend of “discussion and mutual anxiety,” the twenty-four in attendance decided to convene a multi-state gathering of foundation representatives that fall in Atlanta to propose the establishment of a regional association.”

Excerpted from The Liberating Promise of Philanthropy.

Peyton Anderson

“The Peyton Anderson Foundation in Macon, Georgia, was formed to distribute funds from the estate of Peyton T. Anderson Jr., based on his desire to improve and impact the communities of his hometown region. When Anderson died on April 24, 1988, he directed in his will that approximately $35 million of his state be used to establish the foundation.”

“The money I have is not mine. It’s not mine because this money was made in the community, and it was made because the community flourished,” he said. “Therefore, I was able to flourish and this money rightfully should go back into the well-being of the community.”

Excerpted from The Liberating Promise of Philanthropy.