National Symposium Schedule

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Program Outline:

Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - Afternoon / Evening Sessions at new Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, 1300 University Avenue

11:30 – 1:00 pm – Registration / Boxed Lunch Available for Registrants

1:00 – 1:15 Welcome and Introductions

1:15 – 2:30 pm – Opening Plenary Keynote Speaker - Steve Gunderson, President of the Council on Foundations:  “The State of Family Foundations – The Critical Component of the Next Generation Contributions”

2:30 – 2:45 pm – Break

2:45 – 4:00 pm – Plenary Panel Presentations / Discussion Panel of Family Philanthropy Representatives – “Next Generation Challenges / Opportunities:  Inspired Stories from the Next Generation”

4:00 – 4:15 pm               Break

4:20 – 6:00 pm – Plenary Keynote:  Virginia M. Esposito, President, National Center for Family Philanthropy on “The Value of Family Philanthropy.  For The Family?  For Democracy?”

6:00 – 7:00 pm – Reception

7:00 – 8:30 pm – Dinner w Facilitated Table Top Discussions


Thursday, April 28, 2011 – Morning Sessions at Fluno Center for Executive Education, 601 University Avenue

7:45 am – Continental Breakfast and Check-in

8:15 am- Opening Remarks

8:45 – 10:15 am -- Breakout Session(s)

(Participants will pre-register for their preferred session.)

Sessions Include:


  •  Mollie Bunis, Strategic Philanthropy, Chicago.    “Connecting for Impact:  Engaging Multiple Generations in Family Foundation Work” 

Many families hope to involve the next generation in the family’s foundation but are not sure how to effectively engage them in the foundation’s activities.  This session will explore lessons and strategies learned over the years for successful multigenerational philanthropy.

  •  Ellen Taylor Powell, Ph.D. “How Do You Measure Changing the World? Evaluating the Impact of Family Foundation Philanthropic Efforts”

How do you know that your contribution is making the impact you hope for?  This session will cover best practices in the field of philanthropic evaluation and considerations for family members and staff to see if the programs they are gifting are making a difference.

  •  Virginia Esposito, National Center on Family Philanthropy, Washington DC –“ Successful Succession:  Strategies for Involving the Next Generation”

Presentation and discussion will include many of the frequently asked questions on generational succession:

  • How do we raise charitable children?
  • How do decide if the next generation will be involved in the foundation or fund?
  • Which of our children, nieces, nephews, (others?) should participate?
  • On what basis will we make these decisions?
  • Can we/should we ensure that the next generation understands and appreciates the philanthropic legacy they will inherit?  And, how much change can we expect?
  • Christopher Didier, CFA, Managing Director, Robert W. Baird & Co. Milwaukee, "Get on the Bus: Spending Policy, Investment Strategy and the Next Generation, but let Mission Drive!"

NOTE: This session is perfectly suited for families in the early stages of considering developing a foundation. Often times a foundations mission will take the backseat to spending policy, investment strategy and issues related to the next generation. This presentation will help you understand the value in bringing in the younger generation into the family foundation mission discussion and the impact the 5% distribution rule may have on your ability to make an impact across generations. By aligning spending policy, investment strategy and consideration of the next generation with your mission you may increase your chances of your family foundation making the impact you desire.

10:15 – 10:30 am - Break

10:30 – 11:30 – Plenary Keynote:  Jason Franklin, Executive Director of Bolder Giving, NYC “ Giving While Living and Giving Big: Implications for Our Future ”

Noon – 1:30 -- (lunch on your own)


1:30 - 2:45 -- Concurrent Break Out Sessions

  • Richard Ruvelson, Tax Director, Wipfli, LLP, Minneapolis, MN   “Tax Fundamentals for the Family Foundation:  Concerns and Opportunities”

This session will give participants familiarity with the tax issues that can arise in trying to carry out your foundation’s mission.  Topics discussed will include qualifying grants, self dealing, program related investments versus jeopardy investments and unrelated business income tax.    The session will also help participants understand when they need to seek consultation and how to avoid pitfalls.

  • Adam Wiensch, Attorney, Foley and Lardner, LLP --  “Engaging Your Children and Protecting Your Legacy: Legal Aspects of Next Generation Involvement in Family Foundations"

This session will focus on three principal issues:

  • Options for next generation involvement - Advantages and disadvantages of appointing next generation members as directors, officers, employees, and advisory board members.
  • Protecting against mission drift – How can you ensure that your family foundation remains true to your vision during your lifetime and afterward?
  • Planning for family disagreements – How can you structure your family foundation to reduce the possibility of family disagreements or to minimize their damage?



Contact UW Center for Nonprofits Executive Director Jeanan Yasiri,

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