Posts by Allen Smart

Family Funders – Always Important in Rural Communities

nebraska plain

The history of the United States is marked by wealth created in rural America. Timber and wood products in the northwest and northeast; fossil fuels in Appalachia, the southwest and Rocky Mountains; textiles in the south, among others. Related philanthropic funds have been created alongside these rural industries—often from multi-generational family commitments to these rural…

Read More

The Case for the Field of Rural Philanthropy

report cover image

Linked here you’ll find my case for taking all of the disparate elements of rural foundation work and supporting the development of a cohesive and coherent field of work that best serves the interests of rural communiities and funders alike. Download Building a Field of Rural Philanthropy: The Case for Creating a Rural Philanthropic Network

Read More

The Rural Philanthropic Analysis Project 2017-2019


Over the course of the last two years, the Rural Philanthropic Analysis Project (RPAP) team has blogged, reported, presented and collected data from all over the country about philanthropic activity that has, as its focus, a deep commitment to the future of rural communities. While philanthropic activity in rural America precedes anything akin to a…

Read More

Pushing Aside the Rural-Urban Divide


The heightened state of distrust between rural and urban communities has made it more difficult to recognize that there is an inherent interdependence between them. Philanthropy is uniquely positioned to offer an intentional approach to rural inclusion, as well as a new rural–urban narrative, that doesn’t increase division. The renewed focus on rural America that…

Read More

Director’s Blog 7.0


Closing Out This Phase and Moving Forward with Urgency and Commitment As the Rural Health Analysis Project winds down its first generation of work, Director Allen Smart reflects on what to expect going forward for the project and the rural philanthropic field. It’s a gray, rainy, winter day here in rural North Carolina and I…

Read More