2010 has been an exciting year for the Dodge Foundation, a year of transition as well. The six months since taking over the reins from my predecessor, David Grant, have flown by – the work has been exciting, energizing, thought-provoking and humbling.
We held our 13th biennial Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival in Newark in October, our first Festival in an urban setting. We couldn’t be more pleased with the enthusiasm and energy from the poets and Festival-goers, including thousands of students and teachers who packed the performances in a village of venues in downtown Newark. Through a partnership with NJN, we were able, for the first time, to livestream a portion of the Festival, which has now been archived and is available for all to watch. We are currently editing the footage, and looking forward to releasing videos of poets performing during the Festival, adding to our already extensive archives.
Although our grantmaking budget remained smaller than it had been in previous years, in 2010 we made 236 grants totaling nearly $10.5 million. We continue to develop our themes of creativity and sustainability and where and how they can be integrated best in our traditional areas of giving (education, arts, and environment). We remain committed to those areas of grantmaking, as well as to our focus on media and nonprofit capacity-building “Technical Assistance” workshops, and we have already begun to explore some new areas of interest, including public policy and research.
As with every year, in 2011 we look forward to meeting with the best and brightest nonprofit leaders in New Jersey, and we hope to see a year filled with creative new collaborations among our grantees and our colleagues in the field of philanthropy.
As a reminder, throughout the year on the Dodge blog you can read our latest thinking, as well as meet many of our grantees and learn about their work in their own words. We also invite you to join our conversations on Facebook and Twitter to help foster creative lives and sustainable communities in New Jersey and beyond.
Happy New Year from the entire staff at the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation.
President and CEO
Image: Joshua Davis Photography and Design