Bruce Levenson, a renowned businessman and former owner of Atlanta Hawks, delved into the non-profit industry after selling the NBA franchise. He contributed the initial funds in support of the Do Good Institute at the University of Maryland. The mission of this program is to reach out to students who are pursuing their undergraduate degree at the University of Maryland and introduce them to the world of volunteering and non-profit business. The institute seeks to establish the next generation of non-profit business heads and make them competitive against their colleagues in the private sector. So far, the initiative has had remarkable success.
Speaking to PR Newswire, Levenson said that over the years, they established that different organizations were under the leadership of outstanding individuals who could not accomplish the set mission. This is because the leaders lacked crucial business skills to make such companies successful. To this end, Levenson and his wife, Karen, presented their idea to the University of Maryland. The two seeded $75 million while the state of Maryland donated $20 million towards the noble initiative. The first class was taught Philanthropy 101. The program included a lab component where students were provided $10,000 to give to a charity of their choice. The class became an instant hit in the school.
Inaugurated in 2010, the program has been gaining considerable traction. The objective of this program is to attract students who are passionate about giving back to the society. Moreover, the initiative has been successful in developing the next wave of non-profit entrepreneurs. For instance, a former student, Ben Simon, co-established the Food Recovery Network. Notably, the student-managed waste prevention movement runs under the Do Good Institute’s umbrella. In addition, Ben established Imperfect Produce, a program that offers consumers access to various products at a discount.
About Bruce Levenson
Bruce Levenson is the co-founder of United Communications Group (UCG). Levenson incorporated UCG with his friend, Ed Peskowitz. Moreover, he is the owner of Atlanta Spirit, the former management group of the Atlanta Hawks basketball team. Bruce was also heavily involved in writing for the Observer Publishing and the Washington Star.