Ken Goldstein, MPPA

Ken Goldstein has been working in nonprofits and local government agencies from Santa Cruz, to Sacramento, and back to Silicon Valley, since 1989. He's been staff, volunteer, board member, executive director, and, since 2003, a consultant to local nonprofit organizations. For more on Ken's background, click here. If you are interested in retaining Ken's services, you may contact him at ken at

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Dot-Org Pride

Nearly a decade ago, when I was working for HandsNet, we put on an annual conference with our partners, CompassPoint and CompuMentor, called something like, "Surviving as a Dot-Org in Dot-Com World."

By the third year of the conference (and as I continued my involvement with the conference as CompassPoint employee) the bust had come, and it was no longer a Dot-Com world. But the Dot-Org world, it seemed, was still a few years away.

Now, TIAA-CREF has taken up the call for taking pride in our nonprofit Dot-Org status. The nonprofit financial services provider's latest ad campaign is all about "the Power of Dot-Org" (

But where our conference so long ago was aimed at other nonprofits (who else would have even understood what Dot-Org meant back then?), the TIAA-CREF campaign is aimed at the general public. Their point? That in the post-Enron world, nonprofits are more trustworthy than their corporate brothers.

This theme is summed up in one of their print headlines, "Ever heard of a .org crash?"

Of course, we know that our nonprofit sector is not entirely scandal-free, and I'm sure the public realizes that as well. But I like this campaign never-the-less, and I think it's good for all of us to take up this calling to Dot-Org pride.

By emphasizing the "power of .org" to the public, TIAA-CREF not only advertises their business, but gives us all a good publicity boost.

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