Philanthropy Magnified
October 2014

A Message from our CEO, George Ferrari
George Ferrari

The Community Foundation is able to achieve its mission and serve Tompkins County thanks to the generous contribution of volunteers' time and expertise. Volunteers work within the context of the Community Foundation's Certificate of Incorporation, Bylaws, and Policies and Procedures. Of particular importance are the Council of Foundations' National Standards and the Community Foundation's Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality policies. Please refer to these documents on the Policies & Documents page.

Please complete the Volunteer Information Form and send to to pursue any volunteer opportunity. Thank you.


The Community Foundation is seeking individuals to be considered as candidates for the Board of Directors. Please refer to the Community Foundation Board Member Service Agreement and the Questionnaire Potential Board Members 2015-2017 Please contact the Chief Executive Officer, George Ferrari, at,  to schedule a meeting to explore board services and other volunteer opportunities.


The Community Foundation is seeking individuals to volunteer. Opportunities include:

  • Community volunteers on committees (one-year term, beginning January 1)
  • Community volunteers on advisory committees for Field of Interest funds (one-year term, beginning January 1)
    • Arts & Culture Fund
    • Children & Youth Fund
    • Crime Victims Fund
    • Social Justice Fund
    • Women's Fund
  • Office and reception tasks
  • Grant cycle Review Team members


As always, keep connected by visiting our website at

Easy as Apple Pie
By Amy LeViere, Donor Services Officer


It's that time of year again, and as we move into this spectacular fall season ... time to begin baking.


One of our favorite donors recently retired. With regular income from retirement accounts and social security, she decided to give from that monthly income stream. We were able to help her set up a monthly automatic deduction from her bank account into the Community Foundation's account, designated for the Children & Youth Fund. Thanks Helen! Regular giving makes such a difference.    


A recipe for auto-deduct electronic giving:

  1. It's easy to change at any time.
  2. Gifts may be designated for a particular fund or combination of funds.
  3. We make record-keeping easy with year-end reporting.
  4. Regular gifts provide stability and the ability to plan for more effective grant-making.

I'd love to help you put together a "pie" (we have terrific ingredients) that is fit to serve at your table!


Please contact me at


Tompkins County Youth Services Department
By Janet Cotraccia, Program Officer


In the fall of 2013, we carried out a two year grant cycle in response to what we were hearing from our local non-profits.  They wanted a grant cycle that allowed for a longer timeline to focus on being more strategic in reaching their goals. The Tompkins County Youth Services Department (TCYSD) was one of the grantees and at this midpoint in the grant period, much has been accomplished.


Karen Finn of the Results Leadership Group has recently met with the TCYSD's contracted agencies to support each of them in developing and selecting performance measures. These measures will provide a common language among agencies that will eventually determine, among others things, how youth are better off as a result of participation in their programs. Participation in these programs is hoped to improve a skill, attitude, behavior, or circumstance. This grant supports the use of Results-Based Accountability (RBA) to generate a scorecard that illustrates quantitative and qualitative changes in youth who participate.  Currently community-based organizations funded by TCYSD are fine tuning their performance measures, which will eventually be tracked quarterly through a web-based Scorecard. According to the Harvard Family Research Project, the RBA model is well suited for program/agency improvement plans.  Some of the programs supported by TCYSD are the Learning Web's Youth Outreach and CCEAP programs, Berkshire Farm's Bridges for Youth and Families, Cornell Cooperative Extension's 4-H Urban Outreach, the Child Development Council's Teen Pregnancy and Parenting Program, Ithaca Youth Bureau's Recreation Support Services, Youth Employment Services and One to One Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program, and the Advocacy Center's Youth Services.

The Income-Inequality Divide Hits Generosity
Title: The Income-Inequality Divide Hits Generosity
Date: October 5, 2014
Credit: Alex Daniels and Anu Narayanswamy, Chronicle of Philanthropy

The growing income gap between the rich and the poor in America is reshaping generosity across the nation.

The wealthiest Americans are giving a smaller share of their income to charity, while poor and middle-income people are digging deeper into their wallets, according to a new Chronicle analysis of IRS data that shows how charitable giving has been changed by the Great Recession.


Some nonprofit leaders, especially those who serve the poorest people, say it was the loyalty of people with low and moderate incomes that sustained them in the roughest periods of the economy and is continung to do so now in the recovery.


"It hits closer to home," says Tami Phillips, chief development officer at the Midnight Mission, a Los Angeles shelter. "Any day, they too could become homeless."


But charities still need to count on the wealthy: Because the ranks of the country's richest people have been growing so fast, the total dollars they contribute are propelling a big piece of the recovery that charities are now experiencing.


The change in giving patterns has been felt most in America's biggest cities, where the percentage of income that residents donated dropped greatly in 2012 compared with 2006.


Big Decline in Cities

Thirty-six of the largest cities experienced declines, most notably Buffalo, N.Y., andPhiladelphia, where the share of income given to charity fell by more than 10 percent. Los Angeles,Minneapolis-St. Paul, and Washington all had drops of more than 9 percent.

Generosity can be measured in many ways, and looking at total dollars donated versus donations in relation to share of income shows how stark the comparisons can be.


The wealthiest Americans-those who earned $200,000 or more-reduced the share of their income they gave to charity by 4.6 percent from 2006 to 2012.

Meanwhile, Americans who earned less than $100,000 (including poor and middle-class families with two working adults) donated 4.5 percent more of their income in 2012 than in 2006.


But wealthier Americans had far more dollars than low-income people at their disposal. The total the richest donated soared by $4.6-billion after adjusting for inflation, reaching $77.5-billion in 2012, even though the share of income they gave was shrinking. Those who earned less than $100,000 gave $57.3-billion.

M&T Bank Great Big Chamber Auction
The M&T Bank Great Big Chamber Auction starts on October 30th and the Community Foundation is offering business philanthropy strategic planning consulting for auction. View our auction item and others on the M&T Bank Great Big Chamber Auction website:

GrantStation Access
The Community Foundation now has access to GrantStation and we would like to share it with you!

GrantStation is a tool for non-profits, educational institutions, and government agencies that helps these groups find both private and federal grantmakers in their local area, for a specific area of interest, or for a specific project.

GrantStation is very user-friendly and operates using both simple and advanced search features. As a grant seeker, you can simply search within an area of interest or for a specific keyword, or do a more intricate search and find exactly what you are seeking.

There are also many resources provided by GrantStation to aid in the grant seeking process. GrantStation is divided into four sections: Search, Write, Learn, and Read. Each of these sections will help you in different ways and guide you toward writing better grants to the right people.

To give GrantStation a try in our offices or to conduct more thorough research, reserve a one-hour GrantStation time slot by contacting our Administrative Assistant, Matthew Fisher:

(607) 272-9333
New Office Wishlist
We have office furniture donated by the Park Foundation and office architecture and painting donated pro bono by Flatfield Designs, Daniel Hirtler, Registered Architect, but we are still looking for the following things to help make our office complete:
  • LCD Smart projector
  • 5 new large screen monitors
  • support for local artwork
  • Annual Report display rack
In This Issue
News and Events

Financial Counseling 

5 Years Pre and 5 Years Post Retirement 

with Rick Prybyl of Morgan Stanley

  • Oct. 21, 2014
  • 12pm - 1pm:
    TC3 Tioga Place, Room 602
    118 N. Tioga Street
    Ithaca, NY 14850 
  • 5pm - 6:30pm:
    Kendal at Ithaca, Room A
    2230 N. Triphammer Road
    Ithaca, NY 14850
Women's Fund Fall Gathering: "Serving Women Veterans: Community Supports"
  • Nov. 6, 2014
  • 4:30pm - 6:30pm
  • 4:30: social time
  • 4:45 sharp: program starts
  • Cinemapolis
    120 E. Green St.Ithaca, NY 14850
Listening and Learning Session: Collective Impact
  • Nov. 13, 2014
  • 6pm - 7:30pm
  • The Space @ GreenStar
    700 W. Buffalo Street
    Ithaca, NY 14850
Who We Are
2013 Annual Report

Click here to view our latest report,
Learning to Give, Giving to Learn.
What Are Community Foundations?

Community Foundations are not-for-profit organizations founded and staffed by people who are dedicated to seeking out what is needed in our community and what is valuable about Tompkins County and to helping those valuable assets grow important results. We understand our community's needs and help you to turn your charitable passions into results-oriented philanthropy. We show donors how to make gifts go further and accomplish more.

Meet the Board and Staff

Board Chair

Robin Masson


Vice Board Chair

Alan Mathios



Mary Berens



Diane McDonough



Richard Banks

Susan Brown

Tom Colbert

Paula Davis

Sandra Dhimitri

Randy Ehrenberg

Ross Feldman

Marcie Finlay

Bob Jewell

Sara Knobel

Tim Little

Phil McPheron

Bill Murphy

Nancy Potter

David Squires

Carol Travis

Lucia Tyler

Linda Wagenet

Julie Waters

Baruch Whitehead

Stephanie Wiles


Incorporating Board

Jeff Furman

Howard Hartnett

Bill Myers

Robert Swieringa

John Semmler

Diane Shafer



Click on a name to send an email.


Chief Executive Officer

George Ferrari, Jr.


Program Officer

Janet Cotraccia


Donor Services Officer

Amy LeViere


Administrative Assistant

Matthew Fisher

Community Foundation of Tompkins County | (607) 272-9333 | |
200 E. Buffalo St.
Suite 202
Ithaca, NY 14850

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