News from the Greater New Orleans Foundation

Greater Good News

Foundation Celebrates Black Philanthropy Month
Did you know that Black Americans donate a greater percentage of their income annually than any other racial group?  To celebrate, we're looking back at our Celebration of Black Philanthropy, held in February of this year at the Historic Carver Theater.  Watch the video above featuring our keynote speaker columnist Michelle Singletary and read the event blog to learn more.

For a deeper dive into Black Philanthropy, we recommend the following resources:

Cokie Roberts Fund for WWNO Local Journalism
Established at Foundation

The Greater New Orleans Foundation is proud to partner with New Orleans Public Radio to honor the legacy of pioneering NPR, PBS, and ABC reporter and anchor, and New Orleans native, Cokie Roberts. The fund, which was established with a leadership gift from Cokie Roberts' family, will build a permanent funding source for WWNO’s local news reporting.

Photo courtesy of Politico.

read the article >>
contribute to the fund >>

New Orleans Superintendent
Avis Williams, PhD, Begins Tenure

Dr. Avis Williams, the new superintendent who oversees Orleans Parish public schools, began her tenure last month. As the first woman superintendent in the district in over 180 years, Dr. Williams brings her expertise to New Orleans after having served as the superintendent of Selma City Schools in Selma, AL, and as the assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction in Tuscaloosa City Schools. Dr. Williams' 100-day plan puts community input front and center. As part of this plan, approximately 20 "Dr. Avis' Beignets and Conversations" meet-and-greets are being scheduled throughout the district.

The Foundation was proud to award $140,000 to Orleans Parish School Boards to help pay for the national search that led to her hiring.

Photo courtesy of NOLA Public Schools.

explore the 100-day plan >>

Our Greater Region

News and events from around the 13-parish region.
  • Startup St. Bernard, a Shark Tank-style annual business challenge that equips local startups to establish and expand operations within St. Bernard Parish, announced company Ceres Plant Protein Cereal as the winner of the 8th annual pitch competition. The company won over $100K in cash and in-kind services. The Foundation is a proud sponsor of Startup St. Bernard. Read more.
  • The Lower 9th Ward Homeownership Association and Lower 9 Neighborhood Association - two GiveNOLA Day nonprofit participants - are gearing up for their inaugural community-wide event. The Lower 9 festival will take place Saturday, August 27 at the Oliver Bush Playground (2500 Fats Domino Ave.). It will feature live music, food trucks, kid-friendly activities, and a resource fair with over 40 community organizations - including Foundation grantee partners Urban Conservancy and Water Wise Gulf South - that support the Lower 9th Ward. Register for free here.
  • In June, twenty K-12 educators embarked on a two-year fellowship that strives to bridge the gap between education and environment. The "teacher summer camp" provides teachers with professional development and opportunities to collaborate with local science researchers. Participants will gain in-depth, hands-on learning related to Louisiana's pressing coastal challenges, which will be passed on to the next generation... their students. The project is made possible by the Louisiana Sea Grant program and is being carried out in partnership with Nicholls State department of teacher education and LSU school of education. Nicholls State University and LSU are grantee partners of the Greater New Orleans Foundation. Read more.

People of Philanthropy

We believe that everyone can be a philanthropist. Meet the people, grantmakers, and nonprofits that are making it a reality.

Beth Morrison is the principal representative of her family fund at the Greater New Orleans Foundation. The fund, Lemle Learning Fund, focuses on education grantmaking.
Name: Beth Morrison
Fund Name: Lemle Learning Fund, hosted by the Greater New Orleans Foundation
Favorite subject in high school? English

Tell us about your interest(s) in the education sector.
I’m an old fashioned believer that reading and writing are the first steps to personal independence. In a perfect world this journey starts with equal opportunity.

What is the Lemle Learning Fund, and how are you involved with it?
The LLF is the name of the fund set up by [my mother] Amelia Loeb Lemle in 1993 with the intent of funding K-12 public education, specifically in Orleans Parish, LA. She wanted to copy, with a public education initiative, what her husband had invested in Newman School, a private school. Her intent was supported enthusiastically by her daughters, Maggie DeWolf and myself, Beth Morrison. I have acted as the liaison for grant proposal review and choice/s for granting. In recent years, LLF has not only funded schools, but has also directed funds to the startup of GiveNOLA Day. 

Lemle Learning Fund funds organizations like New Orleans College Prep and KIPP New Orleans. Why is it important for Lemle Learning Fund to support local schools?
My mother was proud and appreciative of her adult lifetime residency in New Orleans. From her initial interest in making a significant gift, the only question was how. When she learned about the Greater New Orleans Foundation, she set up a fund in the memory of Louis Lemle, her spouse. From the start almost all beneficiary schools have been in Orleans Parish. This has been highest priority since Katrina with the public school rebuilding.

How has your family maintained a legacy of giving through the Greater New Orleans Foundation? 
I am the lone Lemle family representative, perhaps the last Lemle, since my children as well as those of my sister will never carry the name. I feel an extra responsibility to work with the Foundation on behalf of my birth family. I feel it’s an honor yearly to review grant proposals, choose recipients, and keep the family name alive as the Lemle Learning Fund. 

The Good Word

What we’re reading and watching as we get ready for a new school year.
  • Rhonda Broussard, a New Orleanian and the Founder & CEO of national nonprofit Beloved Community, has recently published a thought-provoking book featuring conversations with global leaders on the future of international education. Read more about the author and book here.
  • Emmy-nominated mockumentary-slash-sitcom Abbott Elementary follows "a group of dedicated, passionate teachers... [who] find themselves thrown together in a Philadelphia public school where, despite the odds stacked against them, they are determined to help their students succeed in life".  Season Two is set to premiere September 21, so grab your popcorn for a light-hearted comedy that brings to light some of the all-too-real systemic issues related to public education in America. Stream it on Hulu and HBO Max.
Our hearts are focused on our former Board Chair, Cheryl Renee Teamer, and her family, as we approach the first anniversary of her passing on August 21.

Cheryl served as the Foundation’s first Black female chair, and her leadership came during a time of great impact. Not only did she chair nearly every committee the Foundation had during her tenure as a trustee, but she gave her heart and soul and generous spirit to everything we did. From GiveNOLA Day to Impact 100 to leading bus tours visiting grantees, she did it all with a joyful and infectious smile.

Watch the tribute video, below, to get a glimpse into just how special Cheryl was to her family, her community, the Foundation, and many others.
Thanks for joining us for today's edition of The Greater Good. 

Until next time!
The Greater New Orleans Foundation Team
Copyright © 2022 Greater New Orleans Foundation, All rights reserved.

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