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  • Reflections on the South: Complexity, Challenges and Opportunity

    I spent much of my youth trying to figure out how to get out of Kentucky. I mostly saw the problems: too many ineffective or even corrupt local officials, too few interesting and accessible jobs, not enough diversity, and environmental challenges from coal mining and suburbanization. I was even apathetic about Kentucky basketball, mostly because everybody else loved it.

    The older I got...

  • Remembering Rick Cohen

    We are deeply saddened by the death of Rick Cohen, a journalist, critic and dogged advocate for rural America. Cohen wrote prolifically on a wide range of topics for N onprofit Quarterly , never hesitating to pen often harsh -- but always fair and valuable -- assessments of philanthropy. He researched the grantmaking disparity between rural and urban...

  • Looking forward...

    After eight months at the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation, I believe we have good reason to be optimistic for the future of the South.

    Over that time, I have spoken with people in Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Orleans, South Carolina and West Virginia – important battlegrounds in the struggle for economic opportunity and equality. I’ve also been learning from...

  • Powering Appalachia’s Brighter Future

    Coalfield communities are getting a much-needed jolt.

    On October 15, the Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (POWER) Initiative announced its first round of grants for communities in 12 states and tribal regions affected by changes in the coal industry and energy sector. The $14.5 million is aimed at helping diversify economies, create jobs, attract...

  • Essentials of Impact Investing: A Guide for Small-Staffed Foundations

    The Mission Investors Exchange , a national membership group of mission investing organizations, published Essentials of Impact Investing: A New Guide for Small-Staffed Foundations to offer advice, tools and real-world examples to help foundations shape effective investing strategies. For insight on building the capacity of community development financial institutions, MIE...