Nonprofit Chronicles

Journalism about foundations, nonprofits and their impact

Summer heat settled over Washington, D.C., last week, and so it is time for me to slow down, literally and figuratively.

One of my journalistic heroes is Carol Loomis the outstanding financial journalist and a  former colleague at FORTUNE magazine. Carol, who worked at FORTUNE for 60 years, took summers off in her later years and while I’m not going quite that far, I’m going to work a lot less this month and next. From training for nearly two dozen marathons during many Washington summers, I’ve learned that pacing is important. Rest days, too.

I started this blog in March 2015, and promised myself I’d write at least one post a week. I’ve kept up that pace since then, writing 81 posts and, as best as I can estimate, nearly 100,000 words (more than the average book). That discipline forced me to seek out new stories each week and expose myself to new people, ideas and institutions. It’s been a great way to teach myself as much as I can about philanthropy, in a relatively short period of time. On the other hand, the weekly rhythm led me to post stories that could have been reported more deeply or written more carefully. There’s a quantity/quality tradeoff in reporting that has been part of my work life since I began writing for newspapers, sometimes churning out two or three stories a day, more than 40 years ago.

I now plan to post with less regularity to this blog for the rest of the summer, and perhaps beyond. My inclination is to write fewer stories that aim for greater depth. But as a believer in the importance of feedback loops, I’d love to know what you, the readers of this blog, think. How can I make myself more useful? Feel free to comment or email me at marc.gunther at Gmail.

Remember that my purpose here is to contribute, in whatever way I can, to a more effective nonprofit sector. As I sometimes say–we all know there are thousands upon thousands of nonprofits in the world, some of them wonderful, some of them mediocre and many in the middle. Wouldn’t be it great to know which is which?

2 thoughts on “Summer

  1. Meredith Moore says:

    I look forward to more in-depth articles. You always have an enlightening viewpoint. I especially would like to see more about animal welfare. For example, I have seen statistics that free range/cage free chickens have more death and injury (turf fights, picking on the week, wing injuries). What is the answer here? More roomy cages? People tend to gravitate to a solution and then the market drives the “solution” even it perhaps it isn’t the best for animals mental and physical comfort. I don’t know the answer…but I would sure like to know that Marc is on the case!


  2. Liz Maw says:

    I have really enjoyed this blog series, Marc. I find it helpful and interesting; I appreciate that you ask tough questions and challenge the sector to be better. It inspired me to do the same. Slightly more in depth articles every two weeks or so seems like a good cadence to try out. Thanks for all you do!


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