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Nonprofit news rounup for Aug. 25, 2009

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Eleven living donors have given $1 billion or more, list says

While there are almost 800 billionaires in the world, only 11 made it onto Forbes first list of living philanthropists who already have given away at least $1 billion, Forbes reported Aug. 24 (see wealthy donors story). The list includes Microsoft founder Bill Gates, who has given away $28 billion, and investor Warren Buffett, who has given away $6.4 billion.

Alleged fraud scheme siphons $800,000 from Kellogg Foundation

Three individuals have been charged with defrauding the W.K. Kellogg Foundation out of $800,000 by creating bogus invoices with company names similar to businesses that worked for the Battle Creek, Mich.-based funder, The Kalamazoo Gazette reported Aug. 22 (see Kellogg Foundation story).

Colorado University outsources endowment management

Without seeking other bids, Colorado University Foundation transferred management of its $825 million endowment to the outside firm of Perella Weinberg Partners, which hired away the university’s former endowment manager, The Denver Post reported Aug. 23 (see California University story). The foundation says the transfer will save fees totaling “in the high six figures annually.”

Gates Foundation funds effort to improve sanitation

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded $4.8 million to London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine for a three-year project researching new sanitation concepts, Kristi Heim wrote in the Seattle Times Aug. 24 (see Gates Foundation story). The project aims to improve methods such as pit latrines, which currently serve about 1.7 billion people who lack access to sewage systems.

Illegal wiretapping of Feed the Children alleged

A private detective hired by Oklahoma City charity Feed the Children says he found remains of electronic surveillance equipment in the organization’s headquarters, United Press International reported Aug. 23 (see Feed the Children story). The charity recently settled a lawsuit filed by former board members who have declined to comment on the allegations.

Kansas State Foundation brings in $81.5 million

The Kansas State Foundation received a total of $81.5 million in contributions from almost 43,000 donors during fiscal 2009, up 18 percent over 2008, but only the fifth-highest total to date, The Associated Press reported Aug. 24 (see Kansas State story).

Iowa universities report 2009 fundraising results Iowa State University raised $127.7 million in fiscal 2009, exceeding its goal of $125 million, while the University of Iowa Foundation raised $203 million an increase of 8 percent over fiscal 2008, The Des Moines Register reported Aug. 24 (see Iowa universities story). The University of Northern Iowa raised an estimated $17.9 million, down from the $21 million it received in 2008.

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