AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

BlogWomen’s Philanthropy Making a Difference

Subscribe to AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

Women's philanthropy in action.

Women’s Philanthropy Making a Difference

March signifies the beginning of Spring, National Women’s History Month and recognition of women’s achievements with International Women’s Day on March 8. In addition to recognizing trailblazing women in society, we also acknowledge women’s philanthropy and the philanthropic impact women have made in the nonprofit sector and our communities.

For years, women have outnumbered their male counterparts in service in the nonprofit sector, including in leadership roles as executive directors and CEOs. Women have also been generous in terms of supporting organizations with their philanthropy. MacKenzie Scott has made headlines in her philanthropy donating unrestricted gifts to nonprofits, allowing the organizations to determine how they can best serve their constituents with Scott’s gift. The ex-wife of Amazon founder, Jeff Bezos, Scott has used her wealth to lift up others, donating more than $16 billion to over 1,900 nonprofits through her foundation, Yield Giving.

Last month, Ruth Gottesman made headlines for her women’s philanthropy when she donated $1 billion to the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in The Bronx, New York. Gottesman unexpectedly inherited $1 billion in Berkshire Hathaway stock when her spouse passed away in 2022. The announcement of Gottesman’s generous philanthropy will cover students’ tuition at the medical school in perpetuity.

Women’s Philanthropy in Action

Not all philanthropists are as wealthy as Scott and Gottesman, but they have made an influence to advance the profile of women while also demonstrating their ability to make an impact with philanthropy. The NCAA basketball tournaments will occur this March with more eyes tuned in to watch the women’s basketball tournament. Female athletes such as Iowa’s Caitlin Clark have been captivating audiences with their style of play while increasing interest and viewership of women’s college basketball. Clark’s record-breaking year as the NCAA’s all-time leading scorer has led to sell-out crowds in arenas and has increased merchandise sales and endorsements of female college athletes by national brands such as Nike, Gatorade and State Farm. Clark’s influence has inspired generations, with young girls lined up to receive Clark’s autograph at the end of a game. Outside of the basketball court, Clark has applied her star-studded status to support her community and causes through the Caitlin Clark Foundation. Clark’s philanthropy has supported the Coralville Community Food Pantry and Boys & Girls Club of Central Iowa by donating funds, food, winter clothing and sports equipment to the organizations’ constituents.

Research conducted by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy shares that women’s motivations to give are based on empathy for others. Empathy is what has driven Scott, Gottesman and Clark to propel their philanthropy to make an impact in society.

AMP UP Podcast - New EpisodeAt AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising, we can help your organization connect to female philanthropists by building a case statement or sharing a client story encompassing donor emotion, empathy, expectation and perceived impact.

Contact our AMPERAGE fundraising advisers at or 319.268.9151 to evoke storytelling and appeal to female philanthropists in your organization’s fundraising materials.


Written by:

Melissa provides fundraising counsel for AMPERAGE’s nonprofit clients, leading feasibility studies and providing solutions that drive successful fundraising campaign results. A Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), she uses her experience and extensive skill set to continually advance her fundraising practices and develop campaign-specific strategies, materials and training to help clients reach their campaign goals and advance their mission. Melissa has vast experience working in the nonprofit sector, having served in development and leadership roles with Sisters of Mercy and the Alzheimer’s Association. In addition, she has served as a volunteer and board member with local nonprofits, such as the Catherine McAuley Center. Faith-based organizations and causes are of particular interest to Melissa. Melissa moves the needle by always looking for new opportunities and ways to improve professionally. She is currently president of the Eastern Iowa Planned Giving Council and a past president of the Association of Fundraising Professionals-Eastern Iowa Chapter. Melissa holds a Master of Strategic Leadership degree from Mount Mercy University. This busy professional, wife and mother enjoys sports and live music in her free time. A fan of Cubs baseball and Iowa Hawkeye football, Melissa and family enjoy football tailgating, where she’s known for her breakfast burritos. She enjoys the local band scene but says a Foo Fighters concert is her all-time favorite.