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How will you change the world?

GMA Foundations helps you define a clear path to transformative philanthropy, and then walks the path with you as an ally and a guide.

We partner with individual and organizational donors as managers, advisors, and facilitators. With over thirty years of insight and field experience, GMA Foundations is changing the world by helping you change the world.

The Family Foundation Life Cycle and the Role of Consultants


A family’s unique set of dynamics is often a significant influence on a foundation’s governance and operations,and can also extend to how family foundations’ experiences with consultants differ from those of other foundations or nonprofits. In this webinar offered by the National Network of Consultants to Grantmakers on January 20, 2016, our presenters – a consultant and two executive directors – will explore common experiences that lead family foundations to seek external help and Find the right fitrecommendations for managing successful consulting engagements.

This webinar is based on an article published in The Foundation Review’s Spring 2015 philanthropy edition, GMA -The Family Foundation Life Cycle and the Role of Consultants.

Download the GMA Family Fdn – Consultant Guide as a practical resource for your board when deciding to seek third party expertise.

Presenters: Mary Phillips, GMA Foundations; Susan Shore Schwartz, The Cemala Foundation; Suzanna Stribling, The Wilbur and Hilda Glenn Family Foundation

Our Powerball Payoff

thought cloud 2Dear Reader:

So you didn’t win the Powerball Jackpot.

The recent epidemic of Powerball Fever had many of us, gamblers and non-gamblers alike, lining up to buy tickets against clearly ridiculous odds. It was the triumph of fantasy over realism, to be sure. Each of us, as we succumbed to the mania, said to ourselves, “Well, what if I did win all that money? What would I do?”

As the jackpot grew, we faced the obvious fact that we couldn’t—not to mention, shouldn’t – think of spending only on ourselves. For many Powerball “investors,” this led to the question of how we’d use those riches to improve the world. We’d cure homelessness, help kids go to college, start a dance troupe that performed in public spaces. Imagining untold wealth let us daydream about doing good for countless others. We didn’t win, of course, but our experiment in philanthropy wasn’t for naught. Let’s hold on to our visions of how we can give, even in amounts smaller than $1.5 billion, instead of shredding them with the losing Powerball tickets. Maybe, just maybe, the fantasy itself is the payoff for us and for our communities.


Amy Segal Shorey, a senior consultant at GMA, wrote this note to the readers of the Boston Globe on the morning after the $1.5 billion Powerball drawing. She can be reached at

When You Think about Succession…

NPO Conversation on December 9 at GMA Foundations invite leaders of nonprofit organizations to join us each quarter for a brown-bag lunch discussion about issues, ideas, and concerns in the nonprofit and philanthropic community. The meetings are a time for us to move beyond the usual conversation between foundations and nonprofit organizations.

Each session focuses on a particular topic, and reservations are required. Guests will learn a little more about GMA and a lot about their peers’ perspectives on important issues.

Topic for Conversation: Succession and Sustainability

The pressures on leadership of nonprofit organizations are well known. Passionate about solving some of society’s greatest challenges, these executives are frequently faced with a shortage of funds, time and compensation, even if they possess abundant talent. How then does an Executive Director who works to build a strong organization ensure its successful continuity?

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