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Richard Marker

Author of

Saying “Yes” Wisely

Richard Marker is an internationally known expert on philanthropy. Currently he is co-principal of Wise Philanthropy, a philanthropy advisory and education firm.

Marker is a recognized thought leader on philanthropy topics. His columns on philanthropy have been published widely and he is the author of Saying ‘Yes’ Wisely: Insights for the Thoughtful Philanthropist [Blooming Twig Books, 2009; 2011]. A popular lecturer, he has spoken in 39 countries on 5 continents and in over 40 of the United States. [He is a professional member of the National Speakers Association and the Global Speakers Federation.] Forbes published an extended interview on his work and career in 2012.

In his work as a philanthropy advisor, Marker works with large and small foundations as well as individual philanthropists. His distinctive approach to funder strategy is utilized by several wealth management groups and philanthropy advisors. He specializes in inter-generational issues and succession, aligning focus, policy, and funding priorities, and in working with boards on developing successful decision-making.

In 2002, largely on a pro-bono basis, Marker founded what is now known as theNYU Academy for Grantmaking and Funder Education. He continues as a part-time professor in the Academy, the oldest and most comprehensive university program teaching funders and philanthropists in the United States. In 2007, he was recognized with the NYU Excellence in Teaching Award.

Over a professional career which began in 1968, Marker has been the ceo of a major philanthropic foundation, a professor, a university chaplain, senior executive of an international not-for-profit organization, and a management consultant in the private sector. His career was the subject of a feature length article in Lifestyles magazine in 2006.

In addition to NYU, Marker has taught at Brown University, Hofstra, and Loyola of Chicago. Over his career, he has chaired and served leadership roles on many boards including several grantmaking foundations and international social change non-profits.


He is married to his partner in Wise Philanthropy, Mirele Goldsmith, Ph. D. an environmentalist and nationally recognized expert in program evaluations, and is the father of Adam, a public interest attorney in Washington, DC.

All Blooming Twig Titles by

Richard Marker

All Blooming Twig Contributions by

Richard Marker

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