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PEAK Grantmaking

Weekly Reads for Women’s History Month – March 19, 2021

Philanthropy, the vendors and consultants who support philanthropy, and the nonprofits we seek to serve, have majority female workforces. However, as we gaze at the composition of senior leadership teams and boards of directors, it is readily apparent that there is room for growth when it comes to seeing more women and women of color in these leadership roles. Furthermore, as our recent Grants Management Salary Report reveals, our goal for pay equity and parity is making progress, but not yet achieved. 

Though there is much work to do, there is even more to applaud!

PEAK Grantmaking celebrates and thanks all the women in our community, in the sector, and around the world. For Women’s History Month, we join the national recognition of the achievements and indelible influence women have had. This edition of Weekly Reads focuses on how women are shaping modern philanthropy and working to promote cultures of equity that create positive change within and outside of their organizations. 

The Statistical Landscape

The Women and Girls Index The second edition of this report from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute, made possible through funding by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, offers a statistical snapshot of trends in giving to women’s causes between 2012 and 2016 – through the election of President Donald J. Trump and the Women’s March. Although the impact that major events such as the #MeToo movement and the COVID-19 pandemic have since had on financial support of women’s causes are not reflected here, the report is an important starting point to understanding the trends in giving that have evolved in the intervening years.

Foundations Respond to Crisis: Toward Equity? The Center for Effective Philanthropy surveyed 236 foundations to get a preliminary sense of how the pandemic has influenced philanthropic support of organizations that serve different demographic groups, including women.  

The Changemakers 

How Women Are Changing the Philanthropy Game “Gender matters in philanthropy,” Debra Mesch, a professor of philanthropy at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy Women’s Philanthropy Institute, told the New York Times. “Men and women engage in philanthropy differently. One is not better than the other. They’re just different.” Not just different, but according to a Barclays analysis of high-net-worth Americans, women give nearly twice as much as men.

New Borealis Leader Outlines Bold Vision for Philanthropy Nonprofit Quarterly recently launched a podcast hosted by editor in chief Cyndi Suarez. For this inaugural episode, she interviews Borealis Philanthropy president Amoretta Morris.“I’m noticing that women of color have been moving into key leadership positions in the nonprofit sector, including philanthropy,” Suarez says. “Some of us are leading predominantly white organizations, often with the charge of transitioning them to more racially just design and practices.” 

Why Empowering Female Social Entrepreneurs Is Key to Economic Recovery Despite the wealth of research that empirically attests to the positive impact that female social entrepreneurs have on their communities, they contend with structural barriers to success. This article by the World Economic Forum explores those challenges and the organizations working to address these inequities and elevate women in leadership.

Diverse Donors to Watch Donor demographics are changing. Here are the nine people – six of whom are women – who are on the vanguard of charitable giving and do not bear to be overlooked.

Inspiring American Philanthropists A list of the women who have taken a hands-on approach to creating social change and have shaped our modern concept of philanthropy.

10 Exceptional Women Philanthropists  A short list of women who over the course of history strove to solve major social problems through charity and laid the foundation for modern philanthropy in the process.  

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