A report in the San Francisco Business Times reveals that many San Francisco-based organizations are getting a big boost in revenue from their annual galas. For example, Meals on Wheels (MoW) raised almost $2.17 million for homebound seniors at its 26th annual Star Chefs and Vinters Gala in April. That amount was the most ever raised by the organization for that particular event. In total, it netted $300,000 more than last year's gala, as more than 1,000 guests showed up to sample a spread of food made by gourmet chefs.
MoW Executive Director Ashely McCumber told The Business Times that she believed the success of this year's gals stems from a couple of factors: Strong donor relationships and an increased confidence in the economy, as people are feeling more comfortable giving once again. He added that most of the money from the gala came from individuals while corporate donations remained the same. Around 200 businesses and individuals participated in the gala's live and silent auctions.
While Habitat for Humanity San Francisco has not yet had its annual gala, Executive Director Phillip Killbridge told The Business Times that he is confident it will also break fundraising records, especially after Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage wrote the nonprofit a $25,000 check.
Are your nonprofit galas and special events seeing similar results? Let us know in our comments section.
You can read the full story in the San Francisco Business Times.
According to a report on a Philadelphia CBS affiliate, prosecutors allege that Christopher English generated paychecks from previously terminated employees of the Arc Mercer -- an advocacy and resource group for the mentally disabled -- and deposited those checks into his personal checking account. He allegedly spent that money on items ranging from a new truck to a $30,000 travel trailer.
English faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.
Authorities say the alleged theft was discovered when the Arc's payroll company reported some discrepancies to the organization. The nonprofit was able to recover almost all of the funds that was taken in English's alleged embezzlement.
The Arc Mercer is located in Ewing, N.J., and has almost 350 employees and an annual budget of close to $17 million.
You can read the full story on CBS Philly's website.
WordPress 3.6 Beta 3 is now available!
This is software still in development and we really don’t recommend that you run it on a production site — set up a test site just to play with the new version. To test WordPress 3.6, try the WordPress Beta Tester plugin (you’ll want “bleeding edge nightlies”). Or you can download the beta here (zip).
Beta 3 contains about a hundred changes, including improvements to the image Post Format flow (yay, drag-and-drop image upload!), a more polished revision comparison screen, and a more quote-like quote format for Twenty Thirteen.
As a bonus, we now have oEmbed support for the popular music-streaming services Rdio and Spotify (the latter of which kindly created an oEmbed endpoint a mere 24 hours after we lamented their lack of one). Here’s an album that’s been getting a lot of play as I’ve been working on WordPress 3.6:
Plugin developers, theme developers, and WordPress hosts should be testing beta 3 extensively. The more you test the beta, the more stable our release candidates and our final release will be.
As always, if you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. Or, if you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on the WordPress Trac. There, you can also find a list of known bugs and everything we’ve fixed so far.
We’re looking forward to your feedback. If you find a bug, please report it, and if you’re a developer, try to help us fix it. We’ve already had more than 150 contributors to version 3.6 — it’s not too late to join in!
From Renting Bedrooms on Airbnb to $1.5 Million in Venture Capital: Lessons in Resourceful Startup Funding
According to a report on Tallahassee.com, Jamie Pitts was arrested Wednesday after investigators discovered she allegedly wrote checks to herself from the nonprofit for she worked, Child Advocates II, over two years. The organization obtains its donations from Guardian Ad Litem, a group that serves Florida's abused and neglected children.
Authorities allege that Pitts, who had sole access the nonprofit's account, deposited the 159 checks totaling more than $90,000 into her personal bank account. She allegedly represented the checks as expense reimbursements most of which she listed as "voided" when she presented financial statements to Child Advocates' board. The checks were reportedly written starting in August 2010 and ending on April 27, 2012.
Brad Sealey, chair of the board, first discovered the alleged theft in March when he discovered the organization's account had a negative balance. When he was able to gain access to the account by proving he was the chair of Child Advocates' board, he discovered Pitts' alleged actions.
In a sworn statement, Sealey said that the organization's bylaws state that any reimbursements must be approved by a resolution of the board, and that no such resolutions were ever made to reimburse Pitts.
Pitts faces charges of grand theft and organized scheme to defraud. You can read the full story on Tallahassee.com.