Virginia’s economy has recovered from the recession, according to a new report

ECONOMY | A recent report from Old Dominion University has found that Virginia has finally recovered from the 2008 recession. The report cites the state’s dependence on federal government spending, like other jurisdictions in the region, as a major reason why it took so long. (WaPo, 12/15)

Virginia’s gross domestic product, a measure of all goods and services, has grown for five consecutive quarters since March 2017, the ODU report found. That’s a surge of strength for an economy that had been stubbornly anemic. Once a powerhouse state, Virginia lagged the nation as a whole in economic growth for six years in a row, with some quarters tumbling into contraction.

A big reason the state took so long to recover from the recession is that government spending was slow to ramp back up. Sequestration — the trick Congress used in 2013 to impose automatic government spending cuts — has hamstrung Virginia’s economy ever since.

WRAG ANNOUNCEMENT | Yanique Redwood, president and CEO of the Consumer Health Foundation and chair of WRAG’s board of directors, has announced her decision to resign from WRAG’s board. Nicky Goren, president and CEO of the Meyer Foundation and current vice chair of WRAG’s board will move immediately into the position of Chair. Read more here (WRAG, 12/17)

CSR | Katy Moore, WRAG’s managing director of corporate strategy, presents the business case for corporate community involvement in a new blog. (Daily, 12/17)

PUBLIC SAFETY | I’m a Trauma Surgeon and a Shooting Victim. I Have Every Right to Speak Out on Gun Violence. (Atlantic, 12/15)

REGION | For the first time, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments has nominated board leaders who are all Black. It has also approved all women for its 2019 Corporate Officers. (WTOP, 12/15)

CHARITABLE GIVING | Why You Shouldn’t Donate Angry: Pitfalls of Rage Giving (YES! Magazine, 12/12)

FOOD | The new farm bill includes funding for grants that specifically help farmers of color and indigenous communities. (Atlantic, 12/16)


Hey all! I’ve really enjoyed my time here at WRAG and creating the Daily WRAG for two years, but I’m writing to say Wednesday will be my last day. Thanks to everyone who’s engaged with the Daily or have left a comment or an email. Buffy Beaudoin-Schwartz, who served as Daily WRAG editor before, will take over writing the Daily – on a modified schedule- in the new year.

– Kendra


REMINDER | Daily WRAG readers, we want your opinion! In order to improve your reading experience, we ask that you complete this short survey by Wednesday, December 19 to let us know what you like and what could be better on the blog.


Here’s something to make you smile on this Monday:

work joke
– Reader’s Digest

Charitable giving in Loudoun County lags behind the region’s giving

CHARITABLE GIVING | A new analysis by the Chronicle of Philanthropy found that Loudoun County’s giving rates have remained the same since 2014. Amy Owen, executive director of the Community Foundation for Loudoun and Northern Fauquier Counties, which recently launched the Faces of Loudoun campaign responded to the news with disappointment. WRAG worked on the Faces of Loudoun campaign with the foundation to bring awareness to challenges faced by low-income families in the county. (Loudoun Times, 2/1)

The first study, released in 2014, showed the median total gifts given to charity from Loudouners was $3,167, or 1.9 percent of their income. The 2017 study shows the figure remained at 1.9 percent, which equates to a median gift of $3,685.

Amy Owen, executive director of the Community Foundation, said she is disappointed by the findings.
“This is based on 2015 data, there is a two year time lapse to get the data out. We are very hopeful we are making an impact,” Owen said.

HOUSINGHUD May Push New Work Requirements for Public Housing Residents (CityLab, 2/2)

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY | The Institute for Corporate Social Responsibility has announced its 2018 faculty. Staff include:

  • Timothy J. McClimon, President of the American Express Foundation;
  • Diane Melley, Vice President of Global Citizenship Initiatives at IBM
  • Catherine Foca, President of the Capital One Foundation
  • Kim Fortunato, President of the Campbell Soup Foundation
  • Katherine Neebe, Senior Director, ESG, Trust & Transparency at Walmart
  • Aman Singh, Head of Content Strategy at FUTERRA.

There’s still time to register through March 1st or until the class is full. Download an application here.

ARTS PHILANTHROPY | Janet Brown, former executive director of Grantmakers in the Arts, discusses why the organization made racial equity a priority and the future of arts funding. (Barry’s Blog, 1/29)

TRANSGENDER RIGHTS | On Consumer Health Foundation‘s blog, I wrote about the life expectancy of transgender women of color and how the District can support the health of this community. (CHF Blog, 2/5)

EDUCATION
– Fairfax County’s appeals process for students in advanced academic programs in public schools is facing criticism from parents and students. (WTOP, 2/3)

– Students at a Maryland high school created videos to show how they practice kindness at their school. Watch the videos here and here. (Gandhi Brigade Youth Media, 2/2)

TRANSIT | DC officials are looking into public transportation options that cater to seniors and night-shift workers. (WaPo, 2/3)

HOMELESSNESS | A proposed bill to prohibit panhandling in Montgomery County drew opposition from firefighters at a recent hearing. (Bethesda Beat, 2/2)


Watch these adorable kids impersonate journalists and talk about black excellence here.

– Kendra

A new documentary explores the lives of homeless individuals in the District

ARTS & HUMANITIES/HOMELESSNESS | According to a 2016 survey by the US Conference of Mayors, the District has the highest per capita rate of homelessness in the US. A new documentary will explore the struggles of some of these homeless individuals as they search for housing stability and try to maintain romantic relationships. (WaPo, 1/1)

The documentary is directed by Ariane Mohseni and Lalita Clozel, first-time filmmakers who wanted to tell the stories of men and women finding love while dealing with the challenges of homelessness.

Over the past two and a half years, Mohseni and Clozel [the filmmakers] have followed the lives of their subjects, all of whom are homeless or formerly homeless, chronicling the ebb and flow of their lives. Street Sense, the organization behind the biweekly newspaper about homelessness and poverty in the District, provided initial funding for video equipment and connected the two with people in the homelessness-focused community.

COMMUNITY | We are sad to share the news that Frederick H. Prince IV, Prince Charitable Trusts trustee, passed away during the winter holiday. Read the Trusts’ remembrance of Mr. Prince here.

RACIAL EQUITY | Katy Moore, WRAG’s Managing Director of Corporate Strategy, reflects on how her first experience of painting a black Santa inspired a deeper discussion about race with her friends. (Daily, 1/2)

CHARITABLE GIVING | Charities fear tax bill could turn philanthropy into a pursuit only for the rich (WaPo, 12/23)

HEALTH CARE | In late December, Congress passed a bill that provides funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program until March 2018. (KHN, 12/20)

HIV/AIDS | Activists and other officials react to the administration’s decision to fire the remaining members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS. Some believe this will have a deep impact on the effort to eradicate the disease. (WaPo, 12/30)

Channing Wickham, executive director of Washington AIDS Partnership, said this about the decision: “To fire the remaining members of PACHA without having new, qualified appointees lined up is deeply disappointing. We’ve never had more tools available to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic, but we also need the political will and adequate funding to utilize those tools. This action by the Trump administration calls both into question.”

PUBLIC SAFETYMd. police chief: Community policing is essential to fighting hate crimes (WTOP, 1/2)

FOOD INSECURITY | New research suggests that ‘food swamps’ – areas with a low number of grocery stores and a high number of fast food and other unhealthy food options – are to blame for high obesity rates. (Citylab, 12/28)

WORKFORCE | Lee Saunders, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, discusses the importance of unions and how a “right-to-work” law would harm workers. (PND Blog, 12/18)


Happy New Year and welcome back! Have you heard about the twins that were born on New Year’s eve and day?

– Kendra

DC Council votes to create an office for black advancement

RACIAL EQUITY | The DC Council has passed a bill titled, “The Office on African American Affairs Establishment Act of 2017”, to create an office to develop, implement and support policies and programs for black advancement in the District. The office will also have the ability to write grants for DC organizations that support black communities. (AFRO, 12/14)

Aaron Holmes, running for the Democratic at-large position on the D.C. Council in 2018, told the AFRO he likes [Councilmember Brandon] Todd’s bill for its grant-making authority. “I think it is important for the District government to give grants to organizations that work to help African Americans in the city,” he said. “These organizations will help African Americans prosper in the city and preserve our history and legacy.

Todd, who chairs the Committee on Government Operations, held a hearing on his legislation on July 6, with the majority of witnesses indicating the bill is needed. The council member emphasized during the hearing that his bill would put the OAAA on par with the Mayor’s Office on Community Affairs such as Latino Affairs, Office of Asian and Pacific Islanders and African Affairs.

TRANSIT | The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments has passed a resolution urging the three jurisdictions and the federal government to each commit $125 million to fund Metro annually. (WTOP, 12/14)

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY | Shannon Schuyler, PwC‘s chief purpose officer, discusses how CSR programs are evolving into innovative responsible business leadership initiatives and their recent Opportunity Index. (US Chamber of Commerce Foundation, 12/7)

Related: Shannon Schuyler is a faculty member at the Institute for CSR. Registration is open for the 2018 program. Download an application and learn more about the 2018 curriculum here.

CHARITABLE GIVINGWill people still give or as much if they can’t get a tax deduction for their charitable giving? (WaPo, 12/14)

HOUSING | Housing developers consider if building houses in the District’s alleys will expand the affordable housing options for middle-income residents. (WaPo, 12/14)

ACTIVISMHow a Group of Native American Activists Used Fake News to Push for a Redskins Name Change (Washingtonian, 12/13)

IMMIGRATION | Two undocumented immigrants in Fairfax County filed a lawsuit against the US government for ending DACA. (Fairfax Times, 12/4)

CRIMINAL JUSTICEA maid stole some rings, then returned them. A jury convicted her, then paid her fine. Was that right? (WaPo, 12/15)


Social Sector Job Openings 

Director of Membership and Programs | Funders Together to End Homelessness – New!
Program Assistant | Climate and Land Use Alliance (CLUA) – New!
Director of Policy and Communication | Consumer Health Foundation – New!
Administrative Assistant to the President (Part-Time) | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers – New!
Development and Marketing Associate | Laurel Advocacy and Referral Services, Inc.
Director of Grants Management | Democracy Fund
Officer, Communications | The Pew Charitable Trusts
Events Assistant | Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
Member Engagement Manager | United Philanthropy Forum
Finance Manager (Part-Time) | United Philanthropy Forum
Vice President, Program and Community | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Senior Director, Strategy and Racial Equity | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Program Director, Washington, DC Community | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Program Director, Virginia Community | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
President & CEO | ACT for Alexandria – a community foundation
Assistant Director of Digital Marketing & Communications | The Children’s Inn at NIH
Communications Manager | United Philanthropy Forum

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.


Community Calendar

To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. Click the image below to access the calendar.


The Daily will be back on January 2nd. Have a great holiday!

Can you guess which term is googled the most?

– Kendra

Advocates hope proposed DC bill will protect sex workers

WORKFORCE | DC Councilmember David Grosso recently introduced a bill to decriminalize sex work, citing how criminalization harms sex workers and creates unsafe working conditions. Advocates believe this bill would make it easier for sex workers to report assaults, which they often don’t feel safe doing, especially when police officers are involved. (WCP, 11/30)

Violence against sex workers is so ubiquitous as to have become chatter in the D.C. Council’s halls. Lawmakers have “heard for years about police engaging in discriminatory violence against sex workers,” Grosso says, though he notes meaningful conversations about how to prevent it have only recently begun. “Who do [sex workers] turn to?” he asks. “Often, in the past, if they turned to the police, they were not given the kind of support they needed.”

That understatement is at the heart of Grosso’s effort to attempt what no jurisdiction outside of Nevada has managed: remove criminal penalties for buying and selling sex. It is perhaps the city’s most robust and public effort in recent history to introduce legal safeguards for sex workers who say they’ve been assaulted by police officers.

POVERTY | Wells Fargo will commit $50 million to help address the economic, social, and environmental needs of American Indian/Alaska Native communities. (PND Blog, 11/30)

HEALTH | Prince George’s County will break ground on its new regional medical center today. (WaPo, 11/30)

EDUCATIONStudy: Virginia schools still face Great Recession funding barriers (Richmond-Times, 11/29)

TRANSIT | A coalition of labor advocates want the District to stop contracting out its public transit services to private firms. (WAMU, 11/30)

CHARITABLE GIVING | This year’s #GivingTuesday donations totaled an estimated $274 million, the largest amount in its history. (Chronicle, 11/29 – Subscription needed)

IMMIGRATION‘America Is in the Heart’: Smithsonian video spotlights U.S.’s immigrant history (NBC News, 11/30)


Social Sector Job Openings 

Director of Grants Management | Democracy Fund – New!
Officer, Communications | The Pew Charitable Trusts – New!
Events Assistant | Grantmakers for Effective Organizations – New!
Member Engagement Manager | United Philanthropy Forum
Finance Manager (Part-Time) | United Philanthropy Forum
Vice President, Program and Community | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Senior Director, Strategy and Racial Equity | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Program Director, Washington, DC Community | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Program Director, Virginia Community | Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Receptionist (part-time) | Greater Washington Community Foundation
President & CEO | ACT for Alexandria – a community foundation
Assistant Director of Digital Marketing & Communications | The Children’s Inn at NIH
Controller | Eugene & Agnes E. Meyer Foundation
Program Director | Grantmakers In Health
Communications Manager | United Philanthropy Forum

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.


Community Calendar

To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. Click the image below to access the calendar.


The Daily will be back on Monday!

What’s your Starbucks name?

– Kendra

A new report reveals “islands of disadvantage” in Northern Virginia

POVERTY | A new report, commissioned by the Northern Virginia Health Foundation and authored by the Center on Society and Health at Virginia Commonwealth University, explores the disadvantages communities face by census tract in Northern Virginia. The report found that opportunity for social and economic mobility varies dramatically across the region. (WTOP, 11/28)

The study found that life expectancy differs as much as 18 years between the areas of prosperity and low-income neighborhoods. Dr. Steven Woolf [of the Virginia Commonwealth University Center on Society and Health] said African-Americans and Hispanics are overrepresented in the disadvantaged areas, contrasting with areas of affluence largely occupied by whites and Asians.

CHARITABLE GIVING | Gretchen Greiner-Lott, WRAG’s vice president, breaks down the impact of the proposed tax reform bill on charitable giving. (Daily, 11/28)

Related: Yesterday, the National Council of Nonprofits hosted a webinar on what the tax reform bill will mean for nonprofits, and how they can act to improve the legislation. Listen here

HEALTH CARE | DC’s Providence Hospital closed its maternity ward in October, now expectant mother’s are forced to find another hospital and doctor. (WAMU, 11/21)

ENVIRONMENT/ WORKFORCE | In Prince George’s, meeting storm water regulations means investing in small, local businesses (WaPo, 11/23)

EDUCATION | District school leaders react to a proposed bill to prohibit out-of-school suspensions for minor offenses. (WaPo, 11/22)

TRANSGENDER RIGHTS | Yesterday, a federal judge ruled that the government must allow transgender people to join the military starting on January 1, 2018. (NBC, 11/27)


On #GivingTuesday, the National Museum of American History tells the history of philanthropy by prominent and regular citizens.

– Kendra