Family Philanthropy Survey Report

Authors: Angelo J. Robles, Family Office Association and Teresa Bonner, Principal, Family Philanthropy Advisors

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SFO Philanthropy Survey Report

The Family Office Association has released its first-ever survey of members regarding philanthropy. The survey, designed in collaboration with Teresa Bonner of Family Philanthropy Advisors, queried Family Office Association members on their SFO philanthropy activities and practices and the impact of their philanthropy on their families. The results reveal varying approaches to philanthropy, foundation governance, generational participation, and strategy. In spite of these differences, respondents overwhelmingly agree that their philanthropic work has had a very positive impact on their families. Their philanthropy has strengthened their sense of purpose and mission, enhanced relationships within and outside the family, enriched family members’ community knowledge, strengthened family legacies, and enhanced the family’s governance, leadership, and stewardship capacity. For those families who have invested in the development of their philanthropic programs by defining their missions, priorities, guidelines, and processes, those benefits are even greater.

SFO Philanthropy Survey Report Topics Covered

  • Who participated in the survey?
  • Do most foundations focus their giving and assess impact?
  • Who participates in family foundation boards of directors?
  • What impact does philanthropy have on the family?
  • Do foundations that practice a more strategic approach to philanthropy, as opposed to “check-writing” foundations, report different levels of impact?
  • Do families feel that including outside directors on their foundation boards strengthens their experiences and outcomes?
  • What trends in family philanthropy today have the potential to impact families?

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