Eleven philanthropists spoke with the Post’s Tom Heath regarding how much they have given in the past year, and their strategy for giving.
Board member of the Studio Theatre and TheatreWashington. Life trustee at Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater. Also supports Signature Theatre and the Atlas Performing Arts Center. Established the Mead Family Foundation in 1989.
Ballpark, how much do you give?
Between $1 million and $2 million a year, roughly, of personal funds for annual giving and pledges.
Has the focus of your philanthropy changed since the recession?
Not a lot. I increased my annual donation to the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region’s Neighbors in Need fund this year, in large part because I learned that a challenge grant would yield double the money, and the need is still great.
How do you set your priorities?
My late husband, Gil, and I have always felt we should give where we live, and, about 10 years ago, we decided to give while we live.
How do you gauge the impact of donations you make?
The impact of giving has often exceeded my expectations. It’s nice to help build a new or improved theater to help the artists, but there is significant impact beyond. I have seen firsthand how Arena Stage, Studio Theatre, Signature Theatre, Atlas Performing Arts Center and so many others stimulate economic growth in their communities.
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