The Gift That Keeps Giving - Christopher Newport University


The Gift That Keeps Giving

Toner Family's $25,000 gift establishes annual Honors lectureship.

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After years of supporting a wide range of social entrepreneurship and philanthropy, the Toner family – Andrew, Sonia and daughter Rachel (‘13) – have made a $25,000 gift to the Honors Program. The money will fund a five-year lecture series.

The Toners’ gift coincided perfectly with the Honors Program’s plans to host a lecture series focusing on social entrepreneurship. The series kicked off last fall with humanitarian Sean Carasso delivering the inaugural lecture. Carasso is the founder of Falling Whistles, a nonprofit campaigning for peace in the Democratic Republic of Congo. “He was an excellent speaker,” Paul says. “He pulled the audience of over 400 in cleverly and skillfully.”

The Toner Family Annual Honors Lectureship continues in 2017-18 with CNU alumna Casey Taylor Johnson ‘00. An English major, Johnson is executive director of the Green Light Fund, a venture philanthropy firm that uses investment and venture capital methods to create a network of nonprofits and other service organizations to achieve broad philanthropic goals. "GreenLight looks at critical gaps for children and families in poverty. We understand what those gaps are, and then go around the country to find the best nonprofits that have demonstrated success in addressing those needs,” Johnson says. “It’s a unique, interesting way of doing philanthropy.”

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