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The team from Charity Navigator, the nation's largest independent charity evaluator and leading donor advocate, shares their thoughts on emerging nonprofit-sector issues and offers tips to better inform your intelligent giving decisions.

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Wednesday, March 31, 2021

We’ve Been Asking the Wrong Question About Charity Compensation

All our lives we’ve been taught that one of the best questions you can ask in researching a charity is, “How much do they pay their CEO?” If the number’s low, that means they respect your donation. If the number’s high it means they don’t, and there’s something fishy going on. 

What if we’ve got it all wrong? 

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Women's History Month 2021 - Team Features: Meet Maggie Kurnyta

We've been celebrating Women's History Month with features of Charity Navigator's innovative female leaders. We close the month with a highlight of a member of our analyst team.

Today, we’re celebrating #WomensHistoryMonth by featuring Maggie Kurnyta

Maggie is Charity Navigator’s Program Analyst and has been with us for over three years.

Monday, March 29, 2021

Meet the Team: My Nonprofit Journey - Matthew Viola


Welcome to our new series, where each month we will introduce a member of the Charity Navigator team. Millions of visitors come to Charity Navigator annually, and they may be surprised to learn that we're a staff of 24! We often proudly state that we are a "small yet mighty team"-- achieving a lot with the resources we have, while staying focused on our mission. We are extremely honored to be a part of the nonprofit community where our footprint (and our ratings!) have expanded, and we are incredibly appreciative of the support received from our donors and users, nonprofits, and funders. We hope this series will be enlightening and entertaining.
Click here for more profiles.
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My name is Matthew Viola, and I am Vice President of Program Analyst Operations at Charity Navigator. Currently, I have a unique and proud attribute: I am the longest tenured employee at Charity Navigator. For the past nine years, I have led the analyst team, which is a group of highly-specialized analysts who produce the star ratings, advisories, and methodology changes, and correspond directly with nonprofits and site users. It is a cohesive team that I am proud to be a part of, and one that compiles thousands of ratings and efficiently handles thousands of customer support inquiries a year. 

Monday, March 22, 2021

World Water Day: Water for South Sudan, Changing communities one well at a time


Over a year ago, on March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19
a pandemic. Today, on World Water Day, we are honored to share a first-hand
account of what innovation and adaptation look like during a pandemic,
and a subsequent economic crisis, from Water for South Sudan (WFSS),
a Charity Navigator 4-Star rated nonprofit.

Water for South Sudan’s (WFSS) local, sustainable work is changing lives, one well at a time. Every day, we see firsthand how access to essential clean water, hygiene, and sanitation impacts entire communities. But we never dreamed that the need would be made even more critical in the face of a global pandemic. 

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Women's History Month 2021 - Team Features: Meet Grace Dowd


March means we’re celebrating #WomensHistoryMonth! Throughout the month, we’ll highlight our innovative female leaders who make Charity Navigator the accomplished organization it is. 

This week, for Women's History Month, we’re featuring our Major Gifts Officer, Grace Dowd

Monday, March 15, 2021

Things you should know when choosing between standard and itemized deductions--especially if a charitable contribution was made in 2020


Deductions reduce the amount of taxable income when filing a federal income tax return. In other words, they can reduce the amount of tax someone owes.

Most taxpayers have a choice of either taking the standard deduction or itemizing their deductions. The standard deduction may be quicker and easier, but, itemizing deductions may lower taxes more, in some situations. For this reason, it's important for taxpayers to look into which deduction method is best suited for them and their family.

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

How Nonprofits Can use Charity Navigator for Benchmarking, Leading to Strategic Growth

My wife and I are very intentional with our philanthropy - we consider the research and subsequent monitoring and evaluation of our philanthropic investments a part-time job. Charity Navigator has played an important role in helping us find and support deserving nonprofits. I recently wrote two articles where I outlined our giving strategy as well as how we use benchmarking to decide which nonprofits to support.

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Women's History Month 2021 - Team Features: Meet Nancy Sadek

March means we’re celebrating #WomensHistoryMonth! Throughout the month, we’ll highlight our innovative female leaders who make Charity Navigator the accomplished organization it is. 

This week, we’re featuring Nancy Sadek

Monday, March 8, 2021

Celebrating International Women’s Day & National Women’s History Month

'Fearless Girl' Statue (New York City, NY)

While International Women’s Day has only been officially observed by the United Nations since 1975, its origins have long standing roots around the world. Globally, Women’s Day has been observed since the early 1900s. Starting in 1908, the United States saw National Women’s Day first observed in late February. This was a day designated in honor of the 1908 garment workers’ strike, where working conditions were protested by groups of female workers. A year later in Europe, a movement began in Copenhagen, Denmark, seeking women’s rights and to gather support for universal suffrage for women. In 1911, the first official International Women’s Day took place across Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, with over one million women and men attending rallies, seeking women’s rights to vote, work, and hold public offices.

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Women's History Month 2021 - Team Features: Meet Julia Bieniek


March means we’re celebrating #WomensHistoryMonth! Throughout the month, we’ll highlight our innovative female leaders who make Charity Navigator the accomplished organization it is. 

Kicking things off is Julia Bieniek, our HR & Operations Manager. 

Monday, March 1, 2021

Inside the Encompass Ratings System Culture & Community Beacon Launch

Written by Stephen Rockwell, Chief Ratings Technology Officer, and Ofira Bondorowsky,
Director of Ratings & Nonprofit Engagement, at Charity Navigator. Stephen leads
the team of charity analysts, program specialists, and development engineers
that launched the new Encompass rating methodology and criteria. Ofira facilitated
the development of Constituent Feedback measures with our partners as part of her
responsibilities to lead Charity Navigator’s engagement with nonprofit organizations.


Charity Navigator’s Encompass Rating System evolution marks another significant milestone with our Beta V3 release today. We launched Encompass last July with the intention of rapidly iterating our ratings by both adding new domains of evaluation and improving on existing domains.  Beta V3 does both: