A bi-weekly update from the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network.                                        



Help Us Honor a Local Leader with a 

Lifetime Achievement Award

The nonprofit sector is only as strong as the dedicated individuals who lead it. So each year, as part of the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network's annual conference, we honor a nonprofit leader for decades of innovation, spirit, and proven impact. 


New this year, we are opening the process to the public. If you know a passionate and committed nonprofit leader in Massachusetts with a track record of major and meaningful contributions to the sector and community they serve, we encourage you to recommend them for a Lifetime Achievement Award.


Past Lifetime Achievement Award winners hail from various regions and illustrate the diverse array of subsectors. We are honored to include Charles Rucks, Bill Walczak, Rev. Ray A. Hammond and Rev. Gloria White-Hammond, Fran Froelich, Kip Tiernan, and Paul Grogen as past recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award.


Recommend a local leader for the Lifetime Achievement Award by August 8.


Boston Marathon Charity Runners Raise $38.4m  The Boston Globe recently reported that runners in the 2014 Boston Marathon raised $38.4 million for charity, nearly double last year's total. This year, 3,150 runners were given slots because they were running for charity, compared with the 2,600 the year before. You can read more about the historic amount raised from the BAA here.


Nonprofit Trade Secrets

The American Red Cross (ARC) is currently fighting a public records request filed by ProPublica to reveal how it raised and spent $312 million in response to Hurricane Sandy. As reported in the Nonprofit Times, the ARC sought to block the release of information it shared with the New York Attorney General's Office from going public, arguing that the information is a "trade secret". Read the full ProPublica article, which refers to the ARC's post storm spending as a black box.


An attorney from the New York law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher appealed ProPublica's request to the attorney general, calling for an exemption from the Freedom of Information Act.


As included in the Slate article on the topic:

The documents include "internal and proprietary methodology and procedures for fundraising, confidential information about its internal operations, and confidential financial information," wrote Gabrielle Levin of Gibson Dunn in a letter to the [New York] attorney general's office.


If those details were disclosed, "the American Red Cross would suffer competitive harm because its competitors would be able to mimic the American Red Cross's business model for an increased competitive advantage," Levin wrote.

Read more... 


Charitable Giving Up 0.9%

Charitable giving has increased for the second consecutive month. According to the Blackbaud Index, charitable giving increased 0.9 percent overall compared to the same period last year. The increase in overall and online giving was driven by large nonprofits, which saw an overall giving increase of 1.9 percent and an increase in online giving of 8.5 percent. The sectors that saw drops in overall giving were Arts & Culture, Healthcare, Human Services, International Affairs, and K-12 Education. Read more.

Do you work with Children or Families?
The Massachusetts Nonprofit Network is planning a webinar with Comcast that will cover topics related to technology and the state's youngest residents. While still in the planning phase, this webinar will include useful information for educators, front-line workers, and/or anyone who works with families and youth.  Click here to tell us what you're interested in learning about! 
State Budget
On June 30 the Legislature finalized the $36.5 billion state budget for the fiscal year starting July 1, 2014. The budget reflects investments in the state's transportation system; the continued restoration of some of the cuts made to the state's higher education system during the 2000's; and increased funding for paying human service providers. The budget also reflects investments in strengthening the MA Department of Children and Families and new investments in substance abuse treatment and prevention. You can view Mass Budget's analysis and Budget Monitor here.
IRS Releases New, Shorter Application
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) unveiled a new, shorter application for small organizations seeking 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status in an effort to reduce paperwork for charities, speed up the application process. The new Form 1023-EZ is three pages long compared to the original 26. While it could simplify the process for some, others worry about the implications.  You can read a review of the new form by Harbor Compliance here
Rulings from SCOTUS that Could Impact Nonprofits
On June 26, in McCullen v. Coakley, the Supreme Court unanimously struck down a Massachusetts law that provided for a 35-foot "buffer zone" around clinics providing abortions. The "buffer zone" was established to keep protesters at a distance from women seeking to enter clinics. Read more.
And on June 30, in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of Hobby Lobby. The Court sided with Hobby Lobby in their argument that the contraceptive mandate violates The Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). Read more.
The Importance of Defunding Clauses in Leases
By Sam Nagler, Krokidas & Bluestein 
Imagine this nightmare scenario: your organization, through no fault of its own, loses its funding for a particular program.  That funding was the source of your rent payments under the lease of the space from which you operated the program.  You have an unsympathetic landlord who says "that's not my problem" when you explain the situation.  You miss a lease payment, and the landlord's attorney sends you a notice to the effect that you are responsible for the full amount of the lease payments that would have been due under the remaining several years of the lease, all in a lump sum...


If government funding is the source of rental payments under a lease, a defunding clause - a clause that allows the tenant to terminate the lease based on loss of funding - is essential. Read more.

Marketing Manager, Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate 

Chief Program Officer, Jumpstart for Young Children

Director of Communications, Boston Bar Association

Director of Major Gifts, Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts

Executive Director, Northeast Legal Aid

Executive Director, Elmhurst, Inc.

Institutional Giving Manager, United Teen Equality Center

President and CEO, Essex County Community Foundation

Development Manager

Director of Community Programs, Perkins School for the Blind

Director of Nursing, Brockton Area Multi-Service, Inc.

Career Manager, Triangle, Inc.


Grant & Award Opportunities

Finish Line Youth Foundation, Rolling Deadline


Trainings & Events 

Advancing Your Career Through Writing and Speaking, Webinar, July 9

Building a Quality Program, Boston, July 9 - 10

Courage in Leaving: Succession Planning, Essex, Register by July 15 (four-day retreat in two sessions begins in September)  

Proposal Writing, Boston, July 17

Community Events Coverage, Somerville, July 23

Conducting Effective Internal Investigations, Boston, July 25 

Collaboration - What's in it for Your Nonprofit, Boston, July 25

Recruitment and Marketing on a Shoestring Budget, Boston, August 21

Ten Social Media Best Practices for NGOs, Webinar, August 21

2014 Baystate Health Diversity & Inclusion Conference, Springfield, Sept 17

Boston Major Gifts Fundraising Summit, Boston, Sept 18

Program Evaluations, Boston, October 16


Paul VanDeCarr of The Chronicle of Philanthropy answers a reader's questions about how to tell a great story about a "boring issue".
The Payroll Blog recently posted infographics that provide you with the best and the worst times to post on social media platforms.
Plotly is a collaborative data analysis and graphing tool. It assembles the brightest and most dedicated designers, engineers, and data scientists in the world to help you analyze and visualize data.
The New England Center for Arts & Technology is a career-directed educational non-profit that also happens to host events and offer catering at their beautiful facility.


Check out MNN's online Professional Directory for companies throughout MA 

New & Returning Affiliates

*Discounts for MNN members


Let's Gogh Art is the only mobile art as entertainment company that delivers art-based events and activities to children, adults, and families. *40% donation of ticket sales for private events

MNN's work is made possible by The Barr Foundation, The Boston Foundation & State Street Foundation.
If you'd like to share a story or have a job, grant or other information that is important to Massachusetts nonprofits, contact llynch@massnonprofitnet.org .