Friday, September 30, 2011

Community Foundation Awards $302,495 in Community Grants

The Central New York Community Foundation awarded $302,495 in grants to twelve charitable organizations in Onondaga and Madison Counties from its unrestricted and field of interest funds.

Child Care Solutions received $8,410 to create a business plan for its education and training services offered to child care professionals.

Chittenango Central School received $4,285 to purchase and implement Caring School Community, a character education curriculum at Bridgeport Elementary. The program will teach empathy, respect and personal responsibility to children in grades K-5.

CNY Works received $25,000 to partner with Syracuse Cooperative Federal Credit Union to bring financial capability training and counseling to low-income and under-employed workers. The program will teach money management concepts and planning for the future with the goal of achieving financial stability.

County North Children’s Center received $29,000 to enhance quality of care for young children through implementation of the Pyramid Model for early childhood development. Trainings will provide families, teachers and therapists with techniques that promote developmentally and culturally appropriate expectations, inclusive practices and support for challenging behaviors.

Friends of CanTeen received $34,000 to complete renovations to CanTeen’s new permanent home in Cicero. The house serves as a safe, supervised place for young adults to go after school, encouraging them away from risky behaviors.

Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park received $100,000 to enhance the Asian Elephant Preserve with a new elephant pool, signage and stadium seating for visitors.

Jim Marshall Farms Foundation received $5,000 to build a barn for equipment used to maintain the Farm, which offers therapy, exercise, workshops and support for individuals suffering from mental illness or physical disabilities.

Madison County Health Department received $7,800 to produce and distribute maps of Madison County trails to promote active lifestyles, tourism and local businesses.

Planned Parenthood - Rochester/Syracuse Region received $10,000 to implement security enhancements at its Syracuse Health Center location.

Southside Community Coalition received $30,000 to establish the South Side Food Cooperative on South Salina Street, in an area where affordable, healthy foods are hard to find.

Southside Innovation Center received $21,500 to implement the Women of Faith in Business program, which utilizes the faith-based organizations and networks that exist on the South Side of Syracuse to build entrepreneurship and business skills in area residents.

Spanish Action League received $27,500 to expand medical interpretation and translation services and cultural sensitively training within the mental health field.

The Central New York Community Foundation has served Central New York for over 80 years, receiving, managing and distributing charitable funds for the benefit of nonprofit organizations. Grants are awarded for programs in the areas of human services, arts and culture, education, environment, health, economic development and civic affairs. The region’s largest endowed philanthropic foundation, the Central New York Community Foundation awards more than $5 million in grants to nonprofit organizations annually. The Community Foundation, of 431 East Fayette Street, Syracuse, NY 13202, can be reached at (315) 422-9538 or


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

High Peaks Resort offers opportunity for non-profits to raise money

High Peaks Resort Announces ‘Spring For Hope’

- Unprecedented Assistance for Non-Profit Organizations -

LAKE PLACID (Sept. 6, 2011) – High Peaks Resort in Lake Placid is seeking applications for its Spring For Hope℠ initiative, an opportunity for non-profit organizations to be awarded free use of meeting space, accommodations, and more at the beautiful Adirondacks resort.

This unprecedented opportunity will allow two non-profit organizations to each receive free use of the entire resort for three days during April 8 to 18, 2012. Included are two nights’ accommodations (up to 133 rooms), free meeting space (up to 10,000 square feet), free audiovisual and support services, and 50 percent off all related catering. The application deadline is midnight, October 15, 2011, and winners will be announced in mid-November.

“In these difficult times, it is important to give back to our community. By helping those who help others year round, we felt we could have the greatest impact,“ said Bill DeForrest, CEO and President of Lane Hospitality, owner of High Peaks Resort.

“The quality of life in our community is directly impacted by our active non-profits. ‘Spring for Hope’ isn’t just a way to recognize them, but by providing High Peaks Resort free of charge, we can add our support and hopefully increase the good they do,” added Truett Martin, Vice President of Operations and acting General Manager of High Peaks Resort.

“This is an outstanding opportunity for the winning organizations to do whatever they want with our gift – from holding a fundraiser, offering a thank you trip to staff and volunteers, to planning an annual meeting, seminar or retreat,” Martin said.

Spring For Hope is open to all 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations actively engaged in fundraising for their organization. Participants will be judged by a panel of community leaders on their success and impact in benefiting the communities they serve.

High Peaks Resort offers the Adirondacks’ newest and most business-focused conference facilities with expansive meeting space and the latest in conference-support technology. Located in the heart of Lake Placid, overlooking Mirror Lake and steps from historic Main Street, the entire resort will be made available to the winning non-profits.

Click Here To Apply

Eligible non-profits can apply for consideration by visiting and completing the application and other requirements. For submissions, questions or other inquiries, email the application and paperwork with “Spring For Hope” in the subject line; or write Spring For Hope, High Peaks Resort, 2384 Saranac Ave, Lake Placid, NY 12946; or fax to 518-523-9908, or call Lori Fitzgerald at 518-523-4411, ext. 361.

About The High Peaks Resort

High Peaks Resort overlooks Mirror Lake while anchoring Lake Placid’s Main Street for an outstanding mountain getaway experience. Surrounded by the six-million-acre Adirondack wilderness park with thousands of miles of trails for hiking and biking, and hundreds of lakes for fishing, High Peak’s 133 beautiful accommodations offer direct waterfront access. Restaurants include the world-famous Dancing Bears and Outdoors at Dancing Bears - with unsurpassed views of the surrounding mountains and Mirror Lake. Other amenities include PR’s intimate lobby bar; two indoor and two outdoor swimming pools; expanded fitness center; Aveda Spa & Salon, and complimentary waterfront activities. Guestrooms feature breathtaking views, patios or balconies; European-style bathrooms with natural stone tiling and rainfall showerheads; high-quality bedding and linens; refrigerators; flat screen televisions with cable and movies; complimentary Wi-Fi, and multi-function music systems with MP3 players. For reservations, visit or call 518-523-4411, toll-free800-755-5598.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Kauffman Series at Le Moyne College Fall, 2011 Seminars for Not for Profit Leadership

Real Collaboration: Learning from the For Profits
The mention of the need for collaboration can generate a wide range of responses from complete dread to wild expectations, often depending on where we stand when the idea emerges. Real collaboration, however, has become a necessary mode of operation in most effective corporate ventures. In this workshop we will look at examples of corporate collaboration between partners and even between competitors and engage in a conversation about both the potential benefits and threats from collaboration among non-profits and between corporations and non-profits. To motivate our creative energies, the workshop will begin with a fun business simulation exercise.
This session will be of particular value to those in strategic roles within the organization.
Ron Wright, PhD is the Michael Madden Professor of Business at Le Moyne College.
Wednesday, September 28, 2011, 8:00 – 11:30 (8:00 Breakfast, 8:30 program)
Location: The Reilly Room, Le Moyne College

Skills for Difficult Conversations
What is a hard or difficult conversation? Examples are fairly endless, and include asking a boss for a raise, giving feedback to someone about poor work performance or a work-place behavior that needs changing, or confronting a family member over a sensitive issue. Drawing upon several disciplines and models, David McCallum, S.J. will lead us through an approach for gaining greater insight into ourselves, understanding others and developing effective strategies for difficult conversations. David will present a framework for “Inquiry” which looks at interpretations, feelings, facts, intentions, differences, defensiveness and resistances. He will also present a communication practice that can create greater mutuality, effectiveness, and even transformation through conversation. The intention of this brief yet high impact workshop is to offer practices and skills that can help us grow in our capacity for the difficult conversations in work and life.
David McCallum S.J. is an assistant professor of Leadership and Management and the Director of Mission and Identity at Le Moyne College.
Friday, October 28, 2011, 9:00 – 12:00* (9:00 Breakfast, 9:30 Program)
*Please note that this session starts one hour later than our “usual” time!

Espresso and Herbal Tea
This session is based on the simple idea that there is something particularly urgent about this point in human history. Recent events suggest that an increasingly turbulent "white water" of managerial life requires strategies that balance both decisive action and quiet reflection.
Renée Downey Hart and Dan Orne invite you to explore your options. Managers must deliberately avoid the thoughtless alternatives of "action-without-reflection” (a diet of espresso only) and "reflection-without action" (a diet of herbal tea only) and embrace a life filled with "reflection-in-and-on-action" (a balanced diet of espresso and herbal tea.) We hope to identify and build sustainable life habits that are the foundation of a healthy balance between action and reflection.
Dan Orne, PhD is an Associate Professor of Business Administration at Le Moyne College.
Renée Downey Hart, PhD is a visiting Assistant Professor of Business Administration at Le Moyne College.

December, 2011 (final date to be announced!)

All sessions will be held at Le Moyne College.
• Directions, parking information and locations will be sent with your confirmation the week before the event.
• Continental breakfast will be served
• Fees: $15 per person, per session, payable at the door.
• Checks may be made payable to Le Moyne College.

To register for these events, please send an email with your name, organization and phone number to Renée Downey Hart,

Questions? More information? Renée Downey Hart, 315.445.4485;

Sunday, September 11, 2011

40 Below Update

Upcoming Events

40 Below Speed Networking!
Wednesday, September 21st, from 5:30pm-7:30pm
Hotel Skyler (601 S. Crouse Ave, Syracuse, NY 13210)

Join us for this BRAND NEW event! Speed Networking will occur every other month at different locations in the Syracuse area. Come mingle with your fellow 40 Belowers and other community members-- you never know who you might meet!

Syracuse University Local Internship Fair!
Wednesday, September 21st, from 11:00pm-2:00pm
Tents on the SU quad (Syracuse University)
Earlier that day, 40 Below will have a table at the fair to recruit new members and show the community how to get involved with our organization!

40 Below New Year's Eve Party!
Saturday, December 31st
Time and Location TBD

That's right, come celebrate the new year-- 40 Below style! We're still sorting out the logistics, but what better way to spend the end of a successful year than with 40 Below?! More details to follow.

Task Force Meetings
Public Arts Task Force (PATF): First Thursday of every month at 5:30pm, Everson Museum

"It's All Here!" Marketing and Communications Force: Third Thursday of every month at 5:30pm, various locations

Civic Engagement Task Force: First Monday of every month at 5:30pm, various locations

If you'd like to get involved with any of our task forces, please e-mail Andrea Bianchi at for more information.


Outgoing Leaders
Lastly, we'd like to wish a warm farewell to Elizabeth Ruscitto. Thank you for all your hard work and best of luck to you!

Employment Summit Survey

Please complete the following survey by 9/16/2011 if you are interested in employment services and supports in our community. Click on the link below!

The 1st Annual Onondaga Employment Summit is asking for your input in planning sessions for the conference. This conference is unique in that it is intended to be a kick off for future discussions and planning in the community around increasing employment for underserved populations, including people in poverty and people with disabilities. The summit is scheduled for November 10th, 2011 at the Crowne Plaza in Syracuse NY. Thank you for your input and participation. Save the Date!

Scott Ebner
Mental Health Vocational Coordinator
Associate Executive Director
Onondaga Case Management Services Inc.
ph. 315-472-7363
fax 315-472-0084

WSJ Article on Governor's Charity Compensation Probe reported that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's probe of executive pay at nonprofits is bumping up against some of the state's best-known charities with strong ties to the most powerful people in Albany, including the speaker of the Assembly and the governor himself.

Two weeks ago, a state task force named by Mr. Cuomo began asking nonprofits to submit detailed information to the Cuomo administration about their executive pay levels and compensation policies. The task force said it is collecting information on a rolling basis from all nonprofits that receive funding from the state.

But one nonprofit that had not received a request by Wednesday is HELP USA, a homeless housing group founded by Mr. Cuomo in the 1980s. The governor's sister, Maria Cuomo Cole, is the group's chairperson, and its board of directors includes Mr. Cuomo's campaign treasurer Richard Sirota and Jeffrey Sachs, one of his closest health-care advisers, according to HELP's website.

HELP operates homeless shelters and develops low-income housing around the nation and gets most of its $71 million budget from federal, state and city contracts and grants, according to its tax filings.

The nonprofit paid its chief executive, Laurence Belinsky, $546,000 in 2008—including a $157,000 bonus—and $508,000 in 2009, according to IRS filings. His salary is more than 40% higher than the median salary of chief executives of nonprofits based in the Northeast with operating budgets of more than $13 million, according to Charity Navigator, a prominent charity database.

Mr. Belinsky couldn't be reached for comment.

Another powerful group that hasn't received a letter is the Greater New York Hospital Association, which represents many Medicaid-dependent hospitals in the city region and pays its chief executive $2 million a year, according to tax filings.

After a reporter inquired about the status of data requests to HELP and the hospital association, a state official said on Thursday that the task force had mailed letters to the groups.

Meanwhile, one of the first groups to get the request was the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, a social service group run by William Rapfogel, the husband of the chief of staff to Democratic Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver. Mr. Rapfogel received a $435,000 pay package in 2009, tax filings show.

A spokesman for the taskforce said all nonprofits that receive government money would eventually receive a request for information.

"There are thousands of not-for-profits that we are looking at, so we are sending the letters in waves on a rolling basis," said the spokesman.

Susan Lerner, the executive director of Common Cause, which advocates for transparent government, said the governor's investigation would be successful only if all charities are treated equally.

"You need an objective standard by which to judge what is or is not excessive compensation. Where are we headed with this?" Ms. Lerner said.

Jeff Stonecash, a Syracuse University political science professor, said Mr. Cuomo's probe was treading on politically sensitive ground. "There are some pitfalls here, but there's a lot of gain if he can get the right headlines," he said.

Josh Vlasto, a spokesman for Mr. Cuomo, said the investigation would be fair.

"Politics never got in the way of investigations before, and it won't now. If you think otherwise, just ask Pedro Espada," Mr. Vlasto said, referring to the former Democratic Bronx state senator whom Mr. Cuomo investigated while attorney general.

Mr. Cuomo's investigative foray into state-subsidized charities has been the object of much interest and anxiety around the nonprofit world. The governor has promised a wide-ranging review, an undertaking that could be handled by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, whose office regulates charities.

The governor has been praised for drawing more attention to nonprofit executive pay as it has stretched deeper into six and seven figures. But, depending on how Mr. Cuomo navigates those loyalties and rivalries within the nonprofit world, the task force also carries political risk.

"I can't see that he isn't smart enough or ethical enough to see that it would be problematic to target only organizations with whom he has no connection," said Assemblywoman Deborah Glick, a Lower Manhattan Democrat who introduced a bill this year to limit compensation for hospital executives.

Mr. Cuomo assembled the task force in early August in the wake of a New York Times article that scrutinized the executive compensation of a Medicaid-financed nonprofit group that reportedly paid two of its top executives close to $1 million a year. He put two of his most trusted aides on the task force, Financial Services superintendent Benjamin Lawsky and State Inspector General Ellen Biben.

But the inquiry's goal hasn't been defined. The task force may hold hearings and issue a report, leading to potential regulatory changes and legislation.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

comm.UNITY will be holding two forums on Tuesday September 6th from 5:00-6:30 PM and Wednesday September 7th from 9:00-10:30 AM

Communication can be rough. That’s why we’re here.

Tuesday, September 6 5 - 6:30 pm
or Wednesday, September 7 9 - 10:30 am
Gifford Community Room, United Way, 518 James Street
Please RSVP by Friday, September 2 to

We understand that with constant changes in technology and the demands of running a nonprofit on a limited budget in a tough economy, it’s hard to keep up. That’s why we’re here to help.

comm.UNITY is Syracuse University’s student-run organization of over 50 dedicated members with different communication specialties. Our mission is to help local nonprofits create and implement sustainable communications plans. Websites, brochures, promotional videos, newsletters, fundraising posters- our team can pretty much do it all!

It is our pleasure to invite you to our 4th annual comm.UNITY forum to find out how we can help you overcome your unique communication challenges and charge ahead with your nonprofit’s mission.
visit us at