My Favorite Philanthropy Books

I read a lot. It’s just something I’m hardwired to do. Between reading stock market analysis in my Investment Advisor Role, philanthropy news in my Philanthropy Advisor Role and blog posts in my Philanthropy Blogger Role, I pretty much read all day long.

Here’s a couple of books about philanthropy that I recommend, each of which speaks to very different readers:

Creating Philanthropic Capital Markets, by fellow blogger Lucy Bernholz, is a must read for anyone interested in the “industry” of philanthropy.

The Seven Faces of Philanthropy, by Russ Alan Prince, should be read by all fundraisers or anyone who wants to understand what motivates major donors (hint: there are seven different types of donors, each of whom have very different motivations).

Wealthy and Wise, by Claude Rosenberg, is a very interesting look at how much you can (and should) give to charity. Rosenberg is a money manager and his book looks at the financial implications of charitable giving and finds that most Americans can give much more to charity than they currently do. Both Peter Lynch of Fidelity and President Jimmy Carter plug the book on the back cover.

A Kid’s Guide to Giving, by Freddi Zeiler. My wife saw this on the counter of our local bookstore and brought me home a copy. This amazing book was written by a 14-year-old who decided to donate the money from her piggy bank to charity, but couldn’t figure out where to begin. She ended up gathering so much information that, with the prompting of her mother, she wrote a book for other kids. This hugely accessible book is easily one of the best introductions to charitable giving for the everyday donor. I recommend it for adults as well as teenagers.

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