BY FREDA MIKLINGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER
Bill Daniels was a highly successful cable television pioneer and former naval combat pilot who believed strongly in philanthropy and the importance of character. In 1996, he transferred his $1 billion estate to form the assets of the Daniels Fund to provide grants to nonprofit organizations and scholarships “to make life better for the people and communities of Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming.” As a private foundation committed to the specific charitable goals of its founder, the Daniels Fund does not accept any donations or public or private funding from any source. Its returns are generated only by the careful investment of its assets.
R. James “Jim” Nicholson, a partner in the law firm of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck chairs its board and Linda Childears is president and CEO over a staff of 43 people.
In 2018, the fund paid out over $39 million in grants, including $8.3 million for youth development, $8.2 million for K-12 education reform, $4.3 million for the homeless and disadvantaged, $2.8 million to help the disabled, $2.8 million to address drug and alcohol addiction, $2.6 million to support the aged, $2.5 million for amateur sports, $2.5 million for ethics education in business and personal conduct, and $2.4 million for early childhood education. It also paid out $18.2 million in scholarships during the year.
The Daniels Scholarship Program is well-known for awarding comprehensive four-year college scholarships that can be used at any accredited non-profit college or university in the United States. As of March 2019, it has awarded over 4,160 students more than $188 million in undergraduate scholarships. Any student who is a high school senior living in the U.S. permanently in Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico, or Utah, with a reasonable test score on standardized college boards (ACT score of 17) and demonstrated financial need is eligible. What matters most to those making scholarship decisions is whether the student possesses the traits Bill Daniels identified as important: strength of character, leadership potential, and commitment to community.
In support of the founder’s strong commitment to ethical behavior in all areas of life, the board of directors formed the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative in 2010. It has impacted over 917,500 students, faculty and businesspeople to date and includes a collegiate program, a high school program, and a law enforcement program.
The collegiate program is partnered with ten business schools in its four-state region and the University of Colorado Law School to strengthen principle-based ethics education to ensure that business and law students understand and appreciate that ethical principles are “constant foundations for all situations.” Since 2010, it has invested $16.1 million in grants and reached over 450,000 students, faculty and businesspeople.
The ethics initiative maintains a library of online cases involving straightforward ethical dilemmas. Launched in 2015, educators have accessed it 1,500 times and reached over 65,000 people in high schools and universities across the U.S.
According to the Daniels Fund 2018 Report to the Community, it has net assets of $1.4 billion as of December 31, 2018. Between 2000 and 2018, it paid out grants totaling $614 million and scholarships of $205 million.
2018 All Rights Reserved. Villager Publishing |