Gateway Center for Giving Celebrates the Strength of “PHIL&THROPY” in St. Louis

January 30, 2017

St. Louis, January 27, 2017—The Gateway Center for Giving convened grantmakers and nonprofits at the Gateway Center’s Annual Meeting today to celebrate the generosity of donors in the St. Louis region and to recognize dynamic sector leaders for their excellence. Gateway Center Members collectively represent $5.8 billion in charitable assets, of which more than $264 million is deployed in the St. Louis region each year, creating sustained and meaningful impact. This year’s Annual Meeting theme, “PHIL&THROPY,” reflects the power and importance of partnerships.

The Gateway Giving Awards reflect an emphasis on best practices in the field and philanthropic sector leadership. Award winners are nominated by their grantmaking peers, community members and nonprofits. This year’s four categories recognize six winners:

Excellence in Innovation in Philanthropy: The Excellence in Innovation Award recognizes a grantmaking organization that has put significant support behind an unproven initiative or project that has the potential to yield great community outcomes, or has engaged in innovative investing strategies.   Honorees: The Boeing Company and Wells Fargo Advisors for their support of the new Venture Café Education Innovation Fellowship, a competitive, paid fellowship for 15 St. Louis Public School educators to learn design thinking, innovative methods and business-oriented practices. Participants translate their learning into curriculum modules they can bring back to their classrooms.  This investment, managed through the St. Louis Public Schools Foundation, has allowed St. Louis Public Schools to approach talent management in an innovative way, and support cross-sector relationships with business leaders to support student outcomes.

Excellence in Collaboration in Philanthropy: The Excellence in Collaboration Award recognizes a grantmaking organization that has made collaboration a central part of its grantmaking strategy, and has shown itself to be an effective collaborator among its grantmaking peers and community partners.  Honoree:  Monsanto Fund for its leadership of regional funder collaborative STEMpact, which was founded in the belief that all students deserve access to high-quality science, technology, engineering and mathematics education.  Over the course of the past four years, 19 districts, 391 teachers, and 17,612 students have been impacted by participating in the STEM Teacher Quality Institute, creating a pipeline of STEM-proficient individuals in our region. See for a list of partners.

Emerging Leader in Philanthropy (two awardees): The Emerging Leader Award recognizes an individual who demonstrates generosity of spirit and a commitment to social impact both professionally, and personally.  The award winner shows creativity and determination to improve the philanthropic sector, and demonstrates great potential for leading the sector in the future. Honoree:  Rhonda Smythe, Missouri Foundation for Health. Rhonda has shown tremendous community leadership, particularly in the area of food access.  In addition to facilitating a pooled grant fund to foster innovative food access and supportive public policy, Rhonda has been instrumental in the development of the St. Louis Food Policy Council, a new coalition that pulls together nonprofit leaders who are working on food access issues.  Honoree: Allie Chang Ray, Deaconess Foundation.  Through her work, Allie has helped attract significant support from outside the St. Louis region to address racial equity and other social justice issues.  She has partnered with local grantmakers to hold conversations about ways to focus funding to leverage limited resources for greater impact, has made presentations locally, statewide and nationally in the areas of capacity building and advocacy, and serves as a Grantmakers for Effective Organizations Capacity Building Champion.

Philanthropic Legacy: The Philanthropic Legacy Award recognizes an individual or a family that has made a significant contribution to the philanthropic sector.  The award winner has led an initiative or program that has changed the landscape of funding, or has made a meaningful or long-lasting contribution to an innovative program in our region, yielding significant outcomes.  Honoree: Amy Rome, The Rome Group.  Amy has worked in the field of philanthropy for her entire career. As founder of The Rome Group, Amy has consulted in strategic planning, resource development and leadership development to a large variety of nonprofits throughout the region for more than two decades.  Amy is also an adjunct faculty member at the Brown School of Social Work, where she has mentored a multitude of business and nonprofit professionals and students in the classroom and in the field.

Business Meeting

Outgoing Gateway Center Board Chair Matt Oldani of the Deaconess Foundation welcomed the following additions to the Gateway Center for Giving Board of Directors for a three-year term:

Julie Hardin, Express Scripts

Melinda McAliney, Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis

Al Mitchell, Monsanto Fund

Board Officers: Jama Dodson of the Saint Louis Mental Health Board was elected as Board Chairman for 2017; Matt Kuhlenbeck of the Missouri Foundation for Health as Vice Chair, Desiree Coleman of Wells Fargo Advisors as Secretary, and Mary Kullman of the Caola Kullman Family Fund as Treasurer.

Outgoing Board Members Ann Vazquez of the Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis and Lisa Dinga of the Dinga Family Fund were recognized for their outstanding service to the organization.

The Gateway Center’s Annual Meeting was hosted at the .ZACK Performing Arts Incubator and supported by Emerson and the Enterprise Holdings Foundation. Visit the Gateway Center for Giving Facebook page over the coming weeks to see pictures from the event.


Philanthropic Landscape 2012: Looking to the Future

June 18, 2012

What does the future hold for philanthropy and nonprofits over the next decade?

How will social, demographic, economic and psychological shifts impact both fundraising and demand for nonprofit services?

How can you use this information to improve your operations and enhance your success?

Join The Rome Group and the Gateway Center for Giving
on July 19 to get the answers you need.

This special event will feature Dr. Robert Reich, co-director of the Stanford University Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, as keynote speaker sponsored by Wells Fargo Advisors.

In addition, a panel of local nonprofit and foundation leaders will discuss the issues facing the sector in our region. PLUS, we will share the results of our recent surveys of nonprofits, grantmakers and donors.

Thursday, July 19, 2012
The Edison Theatre at Washington University

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.   Continental Breakfast (Food and drink are not allowed in the theater, so plan to come early to enjoy the continental breakfast and the networking.)

8:30 – 10:30 a.m.   Survey Presentation, Dr. Robert Reich’s speech on the “Future of Philanthropy” and the Panel Discussion

This event is free of charge, but reservations are required. Please respond by Friday, July 13.

 Make a reservation online here

To park in the garage, there will be a $1.00 per hour charge. All other parking is either meter or by permit only. Pre-paid parking tickets will be available for $3.00 in the lobby before and after the event.

NOTE: Forsyth Avenue will be closed at Big Bend.  It is recommended that all traffic approach Edison Theater on Forsyth from Skinker Boulevard and enter the garage from Wallace (see map for further details).

Your Help is Requested- Individual Donor Survey

May 3, 2012

St. Louis area residents are being asked to participate in a brief survey designed to help local nonprofit organizations improve their ability to plan for the future and deliver on their missions more effectively. The survey is being conducted by the Gateway Center for Giving, the area’s association of grantmakers, and The Rome Group, a local consulting firm serving the nonprofit community.

The survey takes five minutes or less to complete. It asks for information on how much individual donors give to local charities, how many organizations they support, how they prefer to make their gifts, and how the recent economic downturn has impacted their charitable giving.The survey is available at  Responses will be collected until May 25. Read the rest of this entry »

The Gateway Center for Giving Welcomes Four New Board Members

April 3, 2012

ST. LOUIS, April 3, 2012- The Gateway Center for Giving proudly welcomes in four new board members in 2012 including Keith Brooks of Cardinals Care, Kirby Burkholder of IFF, Robert Hughes, Ph.D. of Missouri Foundation for Health, and Amy Rome of The Rome Group.  Job changes among some of our existing board members left a number of openings on our board.  The board recently said good bye to long-time board member Lyle Brizendine.  Lyle recently resigned his position at Bank of America to accept a role in the advancement office at University of Missouri-St. Louis.  We wish him the best of luck in his new role! Read the rest of this entry »

The Rome Group’s 9th Annual Philanthropic Landscape

July 14, 2011

Hundreds of nonprofits and grantmakers gathered this morning at the Edison Theater at Washington University for The Rome Group’s 9th annual Philanthropic Landscape presentation to the community.  The event was led by Amy Rome, President of The Rome Group, and Mary McMurtrey, President of the Gateway Center for Giving.  They kicked off the presentation with a report on how giving in St. Louis compares with giving nationally and discussed recent trends in giving.  Some notable statistics from the presentation include:

  • Giving USA reports that total giving in 2010 rose to more than 290 million dollars. When adjusted for inflation, the increase was 2.1% compared to 2009.
  • Of all philanthropic revenue streams, bequest giving saw the largest turnaround. Bequest giving increased 16.9% in inflation adjusted dollars after declining by 24% in 2009. Read the rest of this entry »

Philanthropic Landscape 2011- The Pursuit of a Collective Impact

June 27, 2011
Giving USA reports that total charitable giving in the U.S. in 2010 was up 2.1%. But did St. Louis area nonprofits keep pace? Find out at The Rome Group’s PHILANTHROPIC LANDSCAPE 2011 event, July 14, 2011, 7:30-10:00 a.m. at Washington University’s Edison Theater. This free event features a summary of our own surveys of local nonprofits, grantmakers and individual donors, as well as a panel of local leaders currently engaged in Collective Impact initiatives.

Click here to Register to Attend!

Scheduled panelists include Jillian Callanan, chief community-building officer for Beyond Housing’s 24-1 initiativeStacy Clay, representing the College Access Pipeline projectBetsy Cohen, a leader with the St. Louis PetLover CoalitionKendra Copanas, director of the Maternal Child & Family Health Coalition; Bridget McDermott Flood, discussing Incarnate Word Foundation’s Marketplace of Ideas initiative in North St. Louis; Robert Fruend, CEO of the St. Louis Regional Health Commission; and Susan Trautman, executive director of Great Rivers Greenway. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Turn Effective Communication into Collaboration

March 16, 2011

By: Lindsey Greenberg, Gateway Center for Giving

Not much time is spent talking about how nonprofits and foundations can more effectively communicate with one another.  The topic of today’s Meet the Donor session at Boeing covered just that.  Our three panelists- Jim Bafaro (Boeing), Melinda McAliney (Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis), and Amy Rome (The Rome Group)- shared communications best practices from their funding and consulting experiences and offered examples of how relationships based on strong communication with a grantee can transition into a collaborative relationship.

Jim Bafaro was very clear with the group in noting that the “three keys to cracking the code” when looking to getting project funding from Boeing are: collaboration, innovation, and out of the box ideas.  He offered a number of examples of how Boeing has played a central role is moving many collaborative projects forward in the region. Read the rest of this entry »

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