Reflecting on 2019 to Bring Hope to Today

It’s an interesting process to reflect on last year amidst this current season of trials. However, it’s true that hard times put the past into perspective.

While the coronavirus makes 2020’s prospects unclear, the lessons 2019 taught us bring renewed hope to the principles we hold dear.

Our 2019 Progress Report highlights why we are able to remain optimistic. In 2019, we saw our generous donors use their funds for more than $163 million in grants to worthy nonprofits across the country. Suffice it to say, it reflects significant growth.

That’s why, for our 20th anniversary last year, we celebrated by highlighting our successes, which really means our clients’ successes.

We launched the “I Give” campaign to share the stories of what motivates our clients’ giving. They point to the ways account-holders use their funds with us to promote policies and initiatives seeking economic freedom and uplifting the entrepreneurial spirit of Americans.

The clients we’ve highlighted – some of whom you can see on the cover of the Progress Report – have a range of motivations for their giving, some of which may resonate with you.

 “I give… to protect and preserve.”

“I give… because I don’t need to wait to have an impact.”

“I give… because there are causes worth fighting for now, not when I’m dead.”

“I give … to sustain our legacy of liberty.”

That’s why we have hope. We know the drive and passion these clients have won’t be uprooted by the current challenging circumstances.

We’ve enjoyed sharing these stories so much that we will continue to do so in 2020. You can read the most recent feature from Daniel Gressel here.

As you read through the Progress Report, which you can download here, note the legacies our donors choose to leave: a legacy for second chances, a legacy for education, a legacy for creative problem solving, a legacy for those in need, but above all a legacy for greater freedom and prosperity. These and many other themes weave their way through the over 2,000 charities recommended for DonorsTrust grants. No two donors’ stories are the same, though their dedication to the principles of liberty unite them.

In a year where many charities are concerned about current and future support, DonorsTrust remains committed to using our resources and our relationships to guide, encourage, and assist. This is a season of uncertainty and ultimately a time when we must see liberty increase. Your commitment to these ideas motivates and guides our work. 2019 capped off a multi-year growth pattern in terms of new clients, total contributions and more importantly total grants. 2020 may be less about “growth” than a time for us to reflect and remind each other why we give and when that giving truly matters.

To download a copy of the DonorsTrust 2019 Progress Report, visit this page. You can also request a hard copy be mailed to you there.


  • Lawson Bader

    Since 2015, Lawson Bader serves as president and CEO of DonorsTrust and Donors Capital Fund. Before coming to DonorsTrust, he amassed twenty years’ experience leading free-market research and advocacy groups including the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He began his career in DC in as special assistant at the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs, then worked as a legislative analyst/paralegal with Pierson, Semmes & Finley, and managed government relations at SRI International. He is a former weekly columnist with Human Events, and a current contributor to Kiplinger and member of the Forbes Nonprofit Council. He also serves on the governing boards of the Atlas Network, State Policy Network, and Oakseed Ministries International. Lawson earned a BA in political science from Wheaton College (IL) and an MA in public policy from The Johns Hopkins University.

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