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Nonprofit news roundup for Sept. 22, 2008

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Wall Street crises leave nonprofits in limbo

As Wall Street giants like Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch tumble, more than a million nonprofits that have benefited from their corporate donations are left wondering where future funding will come from, The Wall Street Journal reported Sept. 22 (see Wall Street story). Many charities, especially those in New York that rely heavily on Wall Street donations, are ramping up fundraising efforts to avoid cutbacks.

Former Gates Foundation CEO expected to join Smithsonian

Patricia Stonesifer, former CEO of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, is expected to join the Board of Regents at the Smithsonian Institution as chair, a position created as part of recent large-scale reform efforts at the organization, The New York Times reported Sept. 21 (see chair story). Implemented last year in response to excessive spending by Lawrence M. Small, former secretary of the Smithsonian, the efforts include a capital campaign to raise more than $1 billion over five to seven years.

Lilly Endowment stalls in effort to sell shares

Efforts by the Lilly Endowment Inc. to sell $2 billion in shares of pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and Co. are going slower than originally planned, The Indianapolis Business Journal reported Sept. 20. Since July 2006, the endowment has sold only 20 percent of the shares it aimed to sell before the end of 2010.

Ohio State endowment would add to president’s pay

Trustees at Ohio State University plan to create a private endowment to add to the compensation package for Gordon Gee, president of the university, Business First of Columbus reported Sept. 19 (see compensation story). Gee, who served as chancellor of Vanderbilt University in Nashville until last fall, currently receives $775,000 yearly, not including additional payment he will be eligible to collect after five years of service. As of 2005-06, just eight presidents of public universities nationwide were paid more than $700,000 annually, says a survey by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

San Diego State has record fundraising year

San Diego State University enjoyed a record fundraising year, raising $70.6 million through donations and pledges during the fiscal year ended June 30, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported Sept. 22 (see campaign story). The effort is part of a seven-year campaign begun in July 2007 to raise money for scholarships and faculty pay. Though a goal for the campaign has not been set, $100 million has been raised to date.

In Brief:

* Feeling the pinch of the economic downturn, more Baby Boomers are putting off retirement, The Wall Street Journal reported Sept. 22.

* Alberto W. Vilar, an arts patron accused of defrauding clients of his investment firm, Amerindo Investment Advisors, would face combined sentences of 150 years if convicted, The New York Times reported Sept. 21.

* New York hospitals are bracing for plummeting donations and cuts in state funding after the Wall Street crises, The Wall Street Journal reported Sept. 22.

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