Communities of Giving Legacy Initiative

About the CGLI

The Communities of Giving Legacy Initiative® (CGLI), a fund of the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, recognizes the importance of endowment-building as a sustainable means of inspiring philanthropy for and within communities of color. CGLI Council Members all share a desire to “pay it forward” in honor of those who helped them succeed by creating a legacy of success that will encourage collective giving to support positive change in the lives of youth of color.

Mission

The mission of the CGLI is to cultivate positive change in the lives of trailblazing youth of color living within Western New York. CGLI accomplishes this mission via endowment building, engaging strategic partners and intentional community connections.

Goals

1. Provide an endowed vehicle for collaborative grantmaking;
2. Inspire philanthropy within and for communities of color in Western New York;
3. Cultivate the next generation of philanthropists of color; and
4. Create positive change in the lives of trailblazing youth of color.

 

MAKE A GIFT to the communities of giving legacy initiative endowment fund

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To learn more about CGLI or any of its initiatives below, please call (716) 852-2857 or email cgli@cfgb.org.

Subscribe to the CGLI mailing list here 


Please click here to read an important message shared by the CGLI Council on June 9, 2020. 

More About CGLI

Sponsors and Supporters

We are grateful for the generosity of those individuals, families and organizations who support our endowment.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation has generously supported the work of the Communities of Giving Legacy Initiative over the years. Currently, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation is providing support through its Catalyzing Community Giving Program.

Legacy Access Donors

• BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York (HealthNow Healthy Living Fund)
• Charles Balbach
• Ruth Matthews

Success Looks Like Me

GM Tonawanda Engine Plant

Leadership

CGLI Council Officers:

Oswaldo Mestre, Jr., Chair

Robert Lowery, Vice Chair

Karla E. Kawenniiostha General, Secretary

Oluwole (OJ) McFoy, Treasurer

CGLI Council Members:

Ekua Aidoo

Tammy Alsace, Ph.D.

Dinorah E. Baines

Thomas Beauford, Jr.

Ruth D. Bryant

Hugh Burnam

Danis Gehl

Karla General

Sean McKinnie

Catherine Roberts

Talia Rodriguez, J.D.

Rishawn T. Sonubi

Honorary Council:

Donald Boswell 

Jennifer J. Parker, J.D.

Lou Santiago 

The late Hon. Hugh B. Scott

Alphonso O’Neil-White

Karen Lee Spaulding

The Young Philanthropists

In March 2016, The Communities of Giving Legacy Initiative (CGLI) launched The Young Philanthropists (TYPs) for high school students. TYPs participate in a program designed to spark their curiosity about grantmaking, community impact and philanthropy.  After hearing from community leaders and philanthropists in the community, TYPs have the opportunity to award two $1,500 grants to community organizations.

In June, 2023 TYPs were honored at a Capstone Ceremony, during which they also awarded $1,500 grants to Confident Girl Mentoring Program, Inc. and Home Beneath Our Feet, Inc. Read the press release here.

Emerging Philanthropists of Color

The Emerging Philanthropists of Color (EPC) initiative is a unique giving circle of the Communities of Giving Legacy Initiative (CGLI). It offers access to people, places and experiences for entrepreneurial individuals of color who are enthusiastic about collective giving. As a result, joining EPC is a life-changing experience.

For additional information about EPC, contact Marlon Kerner at marlonk@cfgb.org.

Close Up Washington, D.C. Experience

Sponsored by the Communities of Giving Legacy, the Close Up Washington, D.C. Experience is a months-long journey into civic education, culminating in a trip to Washington, D.C. in late June. It provides students with opportunities to engage with fellow high school peers from around the country and the world. They also learn about our government and democracy during the week-long civic engagement trip.

Participants in this program commit to several months of social change. The highlight of the program is learning in the classroom. The classroom in this case is the foundation of democracy; our nation’s capital. Our youth will visit everything from the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial to the Smithsonian Museums — and much more, all while interacting with peers.

Experiences like this are possible thanks to the generous support from the community. If you would like to sponsor a student, please email cgli@cfgb.org.

 

Judge Hugh B. Scott Awards

Hugh B. Scott was a United States magistrate judge for the Western District of New York, known for his integrity, demonstrated by his work in judicial codes of conduct, and his pioneering work in the area of reentry. He also taught trial technique at UB law school for more than 30 years.

Judge Hugh B. Scott was a founding member of the CGLI who exemplified its mission of creating positive change in the lives of trailblazing youth of color living in Western New York.

To honor his legacy, in 2022, the CGLI established two new awards to lift up and celebrate individuals who represent new generations of servant-leaders in our Western New York communities of color.

  • The Judge Hugh B. Scott – Community Service Award recognizes a person age 21- 40 from a Western New York community of color who exemplifies a commitment to creating positive change in the lives of youth of color through community service, civic engagement or volunteerism outside of their professional position.
  • The Inspiring Youth – Community Service Award recognizes a trailblazing youth age 13 – 20 from a Western New York community of color who exemplifies a commitment to creating positive change through community service, civic engagement or volunteerism, above and beyond activities required or sponsored by school or youth programs.

The recipients of the awards are recognized each November at the Pay It Forward Awards. To learn more about the recipients, click here.

Congratulations to the 2023 Recipients:

Judge Hugh B. Scott Community Service Award:
Isaac De Los Santos,
 M&T Bank

Judge Hugh B. Scott Inspiring Youth Community Service Award:
Sinclair Maclin, City Honors

Pay It Forward Awards

Each year at the Pay It Forward Awards, the CGLI recognizes personal and professional accomplishments and how those actions increase philanthropy in communities of color. Emphasis is placed on service to the community and educating the next generation, with a focus on showcasing community champions that reflect the multicultural and ethnic diversity of the CGLI mission which works to cultivate positive change in the lives of trailblazing youth of color.

The Pay it Forward Award is the highest honor the CGLI bestows upon an individual or organization. Since the awards were created in 2012, the CGLI has recognized dozens of outstanding individuals and organizations.

The 2023 Pay It Forward honorees are:

  • Alexsandra Lopez, Commission on Citizens Rights and Community Relations
  • Martiza Vega, Hispanic Heritage Council of Western New York

The CGLI also established two awards that honor the legacy of the late Judge Hugh B. Scott, one of its founding members. The recipients of these awards were also honored at the 2023 Pay It Forward Awards. Click here to learn more.

 

Watch the 2021 Pay It Forward Awards here:

 

Watch the 2020 Pay It Forward Awards here:

 

Letter from the CGLI Chair

Check out the latest from the  CGLI Chair, Oswaldo Mestre, here.

Subscribe to the CGLI mailing list here