The Soul of Philanthropy Chicago Accepting Local Philanthropist Nominations

The Soul of Philanthropy, an exhibition coming to the Chicago Cultural Center in early 2023, is accepting nominations for local philanthropists to be featured in the “Rooted in Chicago” component. Nominations are accepted online through Nov. 30.

The Soul of Philanthropy, hosted by Chicago African Americans in Philanthropy from Feb. 1 through April 30 next year, will recognize individuals who are making a difference in their community with their philanthropic contributions. Members of the community are invited to nominate an individual or family who has made a contribution to an organization by giving their time, talent and treasure.

The individual or family nominated must be located in Chicago or the surrounding area. The criteria are simple – what have they done, and what is the impact on the community?

Nominations can be made at https://airtable.com/shrH89XyHeU1F65dK

Nomination categories include:

Hidden philanthropist recognizes the unsung hero in our community. Their individual contribution of time, talent and treasure is the engine behind the grassroots organizations, churches or communities.

Young adult philanthropist recognizes service by an individual (19-40 years old) who has demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the community through direct financial support, development of charitable programs, volunteering, and/or leadership.

Youth philanthropist recognizes service by an individual (18 years or younger) who has demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the community through direct financial support, development of charitable programs, volunteering and/or leadership.

Emerging philanthropist recognizes an outstanding individual or family with a proven record of exceptional generosity (time, talent and treasure) and volunteer leadership to one or more Chicago and surrounding area organizations, issues or communities. The emerging philanthropist has demonstrated civic and charitable responsibility, and whose generosity inspires others to philanthropic action for a period of two years or more. This category honors the achievements of a living person; if a family is proposed, there should be at least one living member.

Legacy philanthropist recognizes the cumulative philanthropic efforts of an individual or family during a period of at least 10 years of exceptional generosity through direct financial support, volunteer participation, and leadership involvement demonstrate outstanding civic and charitable responsibility, and whose generosity motivates and encourages others to take philanthropic leadership roles in the community. Nominees will demonstrate significant, long-term involvement with one or more Chicago and surrounding area organizations.

The Soul of Philanthropy – “Rooted in Chicago” tells the story of philanthropy from a uniquely Chicago perspective. Community programs will be offered on the South and West sides in a manner that consciously considers Black philanthropic giving and how it has evolved throughout generations. The Soul of Philanthropy – “Rooted in Chicago” is about empowering a new generation to recognize their influence and their responsibility to give back. This specially curated, local component will also be held at the Chicago Cultural Center.

The Soul of Philanthropy exhibition was developed in conjunction with Valaida Fullwood’s award– winning book, “Giving Back: A Tribute to Generations of African American Philanthropists.” Developed with photographer Charles Thomas, the 400–page hardcover book profiles stories of philanthropy among African Americans. “Giving Back” was named one of the 10 Best Black Books of 2011 and received the prestigious 2012 McAdam Book Award.

Since 2015, The Soul of Philanthropy has traveled the country and been shown at sites including the Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina; Concordia University in Portland, Oregon; the Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library in Denver, Colorado; and, most recently, in Cleveland.

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