The Board of Overseers of the Cambridge Community Foundation has named Geeta Pradhan to be its president. She comes from the Boston Foundation, where she oversaw community impact and grantmaking in Education, Health, Jobs, Housing & Neighborhoods and the Arts. Pradhan also played a leading role in a range of initiatives and collaborative ventures, including work on the Fairmount Corridor Initiative, a project on a grand scale which seeks to create greater opportunity for Boston’s low-income neighborhoods by improving transit access as well as housing and community economic development through the arts, entrepreneurship, and family asset development.
About 280 supporters and community leaders gathered last month to honor Bob Hurlbut, Executive Director of the Cambridge Community Foundation (CCF), who has announced his retirement after 21 years. The May 13 tribute at the Microsoft NERD Center raised around $220,000 in support of the newly launched Hurlbut Legacy Fund for Cambridge. “I was overwhelmed and it has been my good fortune to work with so many good people in Cambridge – agency heads, donors, and those who really care about the city,” Bob Hurlbut said. “It is they who deserve the praise and I’m glad to be a part of it.”
The Cambridge Community Foundation has grown leaps and bounds from its modest beginnings. In the past 10 years alone the Foundation has experienced growth of over 150% to the endowment (currently $19.3 mil- lion), and 128% in grants (currently $666,444 from 60 funds) with over 183 agencies served. Grants awarded in 2005–2006 in Early Childhood Services: $58,500; Youth Services: $243,200; Senior Services: $34,466; Community Services: $148,440; Emergency Outreach: $77,500; Arts and the Environment: $62,000. CCF continues to increase its role as a support for Cambridge-serving organizations, a convener of coalitions that identify and address pressing community problems, and a catalyst for effective investment in the Cambridge community.
The Leadership Fund is established to provide ongoing support to the Foundation’s administration. Its purpose is to provide the financial resources to ensure CCF’s lasting role as an institution essential to the well-being of Cambridge.
CCF pledges $100,000 per year for five years to support the Agenda for Children’s out-of-school time and early childhood literacy initiatives.
The Cambridge Community Foundation, along with various city departments and over 80 neighborhood groups collaborate in the development of the Agenda for Children. The first goals of this initiative are to promote literacy among children and their families and to assure youth access to supervised activities in nurturing
Grants awarded in 1995–1996 in Early Childhood Services: $10,500; Youth Services: $45,000; Senior Services: $13,160; Community Services: $40,000; Emergency Outreach: $26,500; Arts and the Environment: $9,500.
The Cambridge Community Foundation hires its first full-time executive director, after many years of sharing staff with Cambridge Community Services, in order to increase its effectiveness in providing financial support to the City of Cambridge.
CCF becomes the convener of Cambridge Funders, which provides an opportunity for Cambridge private and corporate foundations, universities, and banks to network, share ideas on grant making and explore collaborative possibilities while building a broader base for community understanding and philanthropy. Cambridge’s selection as one of the “100 Best Communities for Young People” and recognition of the Let’s Talk campaign by the National Association of County and City Health Officials reinforced the potential for such teamwork. Together we were making a difference to the City’s most vulnerable learners, not to mention the professional skills and spirit of their teachers. Sustained funding and attention to an agreed priority was now a reality.
The Cambridge Community Foundation celebrates its 75th anniversary. Mayor Alice Wolf proclaims a week in May as “Cambridge Community Founda- tion Week” commemorating 75 years of service to the community and honoring CCF supported agencies. CCF becomes fiscal agent for the Kendall Community Group, a unique business-community collaboration between corporations in Kendall Square and human service agencies designed to support local youth programs in Area 4. KCG’s mission is to provide financial, in-kind, and volunteer support to the Community Art Center, the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, and Tutoring Plus of Cambridge, as a way of promoting collaboration among local institutions and encouraging business philanthropy.