Set aside the mountains of paper that characterize conventional philanthropy and focus instead on forging enduring partnerships with outstanding individuals. Dare to change the world in imaginative ways that prove deeply satisfying, exciting, and (dare we say it?) fun. Based on four decades of experience as a foundation executive, Bill Somerville’s Grassroots Philanthropy is an unorthodox guide to decisive, hands-on grantmaking. Straightforward, persuasive, and exhilarating, Somerville’s courageous and thoughtful approach to grantmaking will energize and motivate foundation and nonprofit leaders alike.
Grassroots Philanthropy: Field Notes of a Maverick Grantmaker
Take risks. Move quickly. Get out of the office and into the field.
“Bill Somerville provides us with ideas, suggestions, and experiences that would help any foundation, large or small, experienced or new, and any employee or board member.”
—Colburn Wilbur, former president and CEO of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation
“Bill is my hero—a friend to all of us who care about our communities, our children, our country. Someone who can see the great ideas when others just see chaos or problems; someone who listens and reaches down to the grass roots to discover new trends, new ideas.”
—Catherine Milton, Founder, Friends of the Children, former Executive Director, Save the Children
“Working with Bill Somerville continues to be a joy in every regard. It is difficult to imagine how we could accomplish much of our grantmaking, both regionally and internationally, without his assistance.”
—Thomas C. Layton, President, Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation
“Bill Somerville has inspired my community work in ingenious and provocative ways.”
—Alice Waters, Founder and Director, Chez Panisse Foundation