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Good Cheer, Good Times & Good Will During the Giving Season

The weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve are known as “the giving season,” a time for good cheer, good times and goodwill. They are also a time of reflection.

By any objective measure, my husband Ernie and I have much to be grateful for in our personal and professional lives.  We also live in an incredible community with neighbors who truly care about one another. Every day, we try to view the world through a lens of gratitude. Doing this impacts our perspective of those around us and the world we live in. It helps us recognize and cherish all that we have, find balance on the difficult days, and understand the importance of giving back.

As 2021 draws to an end, Ernie and I will respond to year-end appeals, just as we responded to requests for funds on Giving Tuesday (November 30).  We know that year-end giving is crucial for local nonprofits.  In 2020, despite the pandemic and the consequential economic recession that rocked our country, an astonishing $503+ million was donated to U.S. nonprofits on Giving Tuesday – an increase of 26% from the previous, pre-pandemic year. December gifts are critical as more than one-third of all annual gifts are made in December – in fact, 12% of all annual gifts are made the last three days of the year.

Ernie and I will also plan for next year’s gifts by donating to our Donor Advised Fund at the Community Foundation.  By planning ahead, we can ‘bundle’ two years of charitable gifts into one calendar year.  This will allow us to maximize our 2021 tax deduction and ensure that in the new year we can support the organizations we care about deeply.  If you’d like to learn more about establishing a fund at the Foundation, please call me.

As you begin your celebrations, I hope you will consider making a gift to one or more nonprofits that are vital to our region.  The work they do helps build a community that is “merry and bright.”




JoAnn Turnquist
President and CEO