December 2019 Newsletter

The Link

December 2019

Learn more about this year’s TPC Grantees
 Meet TPC’s New Officers and Board Members

We are very pleased to announce our new Officers and Board members, whose terms begin on January 1. Officers are selected from current Board members and include President, Treasurer, and Clerk. We are all grateful to Susan Benford, who has served tirelessly as President for the past three and a half years and been involved in multiple roles within TPC. Susan will remain on the Board, but is handing the presidential reins to Barbara Gaskin, a long-time TPC member who has chaired our Grants Committee and been Treasurer, among other roles and responsibilities. Says Barbara, “I’d like to thank Susan for her commitment to TPC and particularly for her leadership over the last several years. During that time, TPC has transitioned from a start-up to a mature, thriving organization.” Cathy Konicki will be taking on the role of Treasurer in 2020, with Cheryl Wakeham remaining as Clerk.

You may remember that we solicited your ideas for those women you believed would be strong additions to the current Board, and you responded enthusiastically, with several women receiving one or more nominations. The Governance and Nominating Committee had spent considerable time identifying the current Board’s strengths and weaknesses and used its findings to help select candidates that were thought to best meet those perceived skill needs. Other criteria included one’s capacity to do the job and prior service within TPC. As a result of the Committee’s hard work, we are pleased to introduce you to the following six new Board members, who will begin their terms on January 1: Jennifer Angarita, Val Basnight, Kathy Dunigan, Bridget Dunn, Leslie Levenson, and Jenny Morrison.

Check out our new Board members’ bios


TPC Liaisons, Out and About

On November 21, grantee FriendshipWorks held its 35th Anniversary Gala, celebrating decades of working to end elder isolation. The event helped bring the spirit of FriendshipWorks to attendees by incorporating key elements of its program, including performances by members of its MusicWorks program, which brings music to isolated elders, as well as a pet park with dogs from FriendshipWorks’ PetPals program, in which volunteers bring their pets to visit over 650 elderly residents in long-term care facilities each week. In addition to these programs, FriendshipWorks offers a variety of other ways to volunteer, from accompanying elders to medical appointments to short-term assistance with specific tasks. To get involved, learn more and apply here.

TPC Liaisons Jennifer Chesnulovitch and Cassandra Trujillo loved playing with the dogs in the PetPals dog park and enjoyed hearing stories of the impact FriendshipWorks is making in the lives of both isolated elders and volunteers.


Upcoming TPC Events:

Jan 15, Downtown Boston, 11:45 am to 1:15 pm. Connect the Dots with grantee Project Citizenship. Register

Jan 30, Cambridge, 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Special Book Discussion “Cuz: The Life and Times of Michael A.” with author Danielle Allen. Register

Feb 12, Boston, 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Philanthropy Dialogue about “Education and Activism” with grantees Boston HERC, The Wily Network, and Friends of the Children. Register

Mar 4, Brookline, 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Philanthropy Dialogue about “Community and Activism” with grantees Cambridge Women’s Center, Food Link, and FriendshipWorks. Register

Save the Date for this spring’s Grant Awards & All Member Meeting! This year we are excited to announce a new venue for our Grant Awards Meeting! Board member and YP Cassandra Trujillo has arranged for us to hold our meeting at Wayfair Headquarters in Copley Place! We’ll be gathering on the evening of Thursday, May 28 from 6:30-9:00 pm.


Grantee Impact: Massachusetts Adoption Resource Exchange
TPC Liaisons: Ellen Giannuzzi and Anne Ruggles

For our grantee spotlight this month, TPC liaisons Ellen Giannuzzi and Anne Ruggles met with Lisa Funaro, Executive Director of Massachusetts Adoption Resource Exchange, Inc. (MARE), to learn more about the work of our new grantee and its programs to help find permanent homes for youth in foster care.

Can you describe the work of MARE for our members?

MARE works to find permanent adoptive homes for children and teens waiting in foster care. All children deserve to grow up in a family where they feel safe and loved, and MARE is committed to finding a family for every waiting child. We engage in child-specific recruitment, working to find an adoptive family to match a particular child’s needs. We also provide ongoing support services to families and children throughout the adoption process to ensure stable and successful placements.

 (Read more…)


Member Impact: Interior Design, Justice at Work, and C&J Katz Studio
Interview by Elyse Pipitone

When TPC grantee Justice at Work (JAW) received funding for a second year, little did agency staff expect to receive a gift of expert office design consultation as well. Thanks to TPC member Cheryl Katz, JAW is getting pro bono services from C&J Katz Studio, which Cheryl owns with her husband, Jeffrey. According to JAW Associate Director Katelyn Parady, Cheryl served on the grants review committee for JAW’s first year of funding, and learned that the agency needed help finding new office space. Jeffrey Katz answered the call.

TPC’s funding support is so important to agencies like Justice at Work, but those agencies usually have limited resources for something like an office relocation,” said Katz. “Cheryl and I have a particular interest in Justice at Work’s mission, and it’s been a pleasure helping them. The language of construction and design can be daunting for an agency focused on labor justice, but it’s something our team can do easily.”

(Read more…)


Corporate Sponsor of
Philanthropy Dialogues:

Young Philanthropist
Initiative Sponsor:

Connect the Dots
Events Sponsor:


Copyright © 2019 The Philanthropy Connection. All rights reserved.

The Philanthropy Connection’s mission is to inspire and enable a community of women to learn, grow, and engage in collective giving to support nonprofit organizations that address systemic inequities impacting individuals and families within the greater Boston area.

Phone: 617-544-7812

TPC members include all women who identify as cisgender, transgender, agender, gender queer, and femme. TPC welcomes everyone for whom “woman” is a meaningful identifier or experience.

TPC qualifies as a public charity under section 501(c)(3) for US tax purposes. Our EIN is #46-0665444.