Category Archives: News-updates

ALS Association Seeks Trademark for ‘Ice-Bucket Challenge’

Citing concerns that profiteers are using the ice-bucket challenge for personal gain, the ALS Association has applied to trademark the phrase, writes The Washington Post. The disease charity, which has raised more than $94-million in the past month from the viral phenomenon, contends it owns the term “ice-bucket challenge” for giving purposes.

Erik Pelton, a trademark lawyer who drew attention to the application on his blog, told the Post he considered the bid “shameful,” adding, “I hope that th…

Howard G. Buffett Foundation Buys Rosa Parks Archive

Howard G. Buffett disclosed Thursday that his charitable organization has purchased a collection of awards, photographs, clothes, and hundreds of other items belonging to civil-rights icon Rosa Parks, the Associated Press reports. The son of billionaire philanthropist and investor Warren Buffett said he will donate the archive to an as-yet-unselected museum or institute.

Ms. Parks, whose refusal to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala., bus to a white man in 1955 made her an enduring symbol of …

D.C. Foundation in Fight With Landowner Over Housing Plan

A prominent Washington, D.C.-area philanthropy’s plan to sell 634 acres of rural Maryland real estate for residential development has generated tension among locals, particularly the owner of a horse farm that would be surrounded by the new subdivision, The Washington Post writes. The Eugene B. Casey Foundation secured final approval from Frederick County, Md., commissioners last week for a rezoning to allow construction of more than 1,000 homes on the land.

The foundation says it will sell the …

Ex-Ill. County Official Charged With $300,000 Grant Fraud

A former Cook County, Ill., employee has been accused by federal prosecutors of using a nonprofit organization and other entities to bilk $300,000 from a grant program he managed, the Chicago Tribune writes. Barry Croall, 45, of Montgomery, Ill., was indicted Wednesday on charges of wire fraud and federal program theft.

Mr. Croall, a program manager for the county’s Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, was in charge of a $10.3-million program to assist people affected by flo…

Pittsburgh Symphony Deficit Grows as Red-Ink Deadline Nears

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra—which faces the loss of a $5-million gift if it does not balance its budget by the 2015 fiscal year—is projecting an approximately $1.4-million deficit for the current fiscal year, which ends Sunday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes. The represents a $300,000 increase from last year’s shortfall.

The Heinz Endowments donation is contingent on the symphony balancing its budget of about $30-million in 2014-15. It will receive an additional $12-million from the Si…

Arts Tumult in Philadelphia for Dance and Theater Groups

The Pennsylvania Ballet dismissed its veteran lead dancers this week, also letting go its marketing chief, the head of its ballet school, and other top officials, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer. The housecleaning comes a week after Angel Corella took over as artistic director and continues a remaking begun last year after an evaluation of the Philadelphia troupe’s operations by leading arts consultant Michael Kaiser.

Ballet master Jeffrey Gribler and ballet mistress Tamara Hadley both jo…

Foundation Tie Costs Frank Lloyd Wright School Accreditation

A decision by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation not to spin off its affiliated architecture college into an independent entity means the institution will lose its accreditation, fomenting tension between the two groups, writes The New York Times.

The college’s board of governors criticized the foundation board’s vote to retain control of the college at the cost of its blessing from the Higher Learning Commission, which adopted a rule two years ago requiring institutions with its imprimatur to be…

Doctors Without Borders Stretched Thin by Ebola Crisis

Global medical relief group Doctors Without Borders said this week that it can provide only limited help to tackle a new outbreak of Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo as it is already strained by the epidemic in West Africa, Reuters reports. The charity will send doctors, nurses, and logistics experts to the country but not specialist Ebola teams, as it would normally do in response to an outbreak.

The central African nation announced on Sunday that a high number of suspected Ebola…

Grocery Chain Donates Ice Profits to Nerve-Disease Group

With the ice-bucket challenge taking off in Britain, U.K. supermarket chain Tesco said Wednesday it is giving profits from fast-rising ice-cube sales to charity and called on its corporate peers to do the same, writes the Press Association. The firm said it has donated more than $33,000 so far to the Motor Neurone Disease Association, which fights neurological disorders like ALS.

In line with individual participants in the viral charity phenomenon, who challenge others to douse themselves with i…

Rice, Not Ice, in Indian Version of Charity Bucket Challenge

A journalist in India has launched a “rice-bucket challenge,” encouraging people by social media to donate a bucket of the staple food to alleviate hunger, NPR reports. Since Manju Kalanidhi kicked off the effort Friday, posting a photo of herself giving 50 pounds of rice to a neighbor in the Indian city of Hyderabad, the campaign spread beyond the country’s borders, garnering 40,000 likes on a dedicated Facebook page.

A third of India’s 1.2 billion people live on less than $1.25 a day—and mor…