West Palm Beach transplants Phil and Meg George are navigating the philanthropy scene one charitable investment at a time. Here is the George Philanthropy Group founders’ giving story.
What inspired your passion for charitable giving? We’re married and business partners, making it even easier to connect often on our passion and goals for the world of philanthropy. When we realized that in many communities donations can be spread far and wide, often without the ability to truly impact or transform a cause, we were inspired to get involved and facilitate more impactful giving. We’re motivated to help generate greater outcomes in communities and missions around the world by helping people and their families come together to make philanthropic investments that can effect real change.
As the founders of George Philanthropy Group, what is your mission? Our mission is to make philanthropy an experience. We work with families who have different personalities, generations and goals, and we exist to streamline giving for them in order to generate real outcomes. Not all generous families and individual donors consider themselves philanthropists, but we do because we recognize their potential. Driving investment-like philanthropy, our role is to take their support and intentions and make them as impactful for their communities and worldwide passions as possible.
You’ve recently made the transition from New York to West Palm Beach. What spurred the southern move? The decision to change our home base was an easy one: Our work with clients in the region has continued to grow in recent years, propelled forward significantly in the last 18 months as a result of the recent migration of many families to South Florida from the Northeast. As more of those families live in South Florida, we want to make sure we’re at their table with them.
How does George Philanthropy Group support the Palm Beach community? Philanthropy is changing drastically, away from transactionaltype giving to even more thoughtful philanthropic investments. This is a movement we help lead on both the giving and receiving ends when it comes to navigating the evolution successfully. Organizations and people will come to us and ask, ‘Where do I even begin?’ We feel eager to bring them along, over time, adopting the best ways to give and solicit. Especially in the Palm Beach community, there is tremendous opportunity to do our work at the highest levels.
What does philanthropy mean to you? Philanthropy can transform organizations, missions and communities. To us, it represents the marriage of the heart and mind. It gives us the opportunity to be thoughtful around the outcomes we want to see, and the ability to make decisions that truly effect change. For many, it also presents a special opportunity to involve kids and grandkids in work that is personal and important. This year, all eyes are on outcomes and impact when it comes to charitable activity, which means that we are on the frontlines of a movement that will allow individuals, families and nonprofits to be deliberate on how they reach their goals through philanthropy.
What will 2022 bring for Palm Beach’s charity scene? The region is adapting to the changing trends in philanthropy, so we can expect to see more outcome-driven investments in nonprofits and some less transactional-type giving. While we know that people are eager to be reconnected in person, we now know that they are eager to be a part of organizations and gifts that have a tangible impact. It’s known that Palm Beach is an admired and adored hub for charitable events, but we can also expect to see and hear about more large campaign initiatives that secure and celebrate significant investments in plans that have been developed to meet the region’s growing needs. Many families are actively passing their foundation and philanthropy work to the next generation, which will make for an even more vibrant and deep philanthropy scene in this town.
Photography by: PHOTOGRAPHED BY RYAN HUGHES & KIRSTEN MILLON SAINTE-CLAIRE