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A Five-Year Investment in SVP Portland: Shannon Jones

Posted by Social Venture Partners Portland

If you would like to hear from one of SVP Portland’s committed Partners, let us introduce you to Shannon Jones, SVP Portland’s first Five-Year Partner! A native Portlander, Shannon’s professional background is in music (vocal performance). She is also the current president of the So Hum Foundation, a private charitable 501c3, founded by her father, Jerry Jones. To learn more about her reasoning behind this five-year pledge to SVP Portland, please read on.


What first drew you to invest in SVP Portland?

My father, Jerry Jones, became a Partner in the early days of Social Venture Partners Portland, and he was impressed with SVP Portland’s mission, vision, and potential for impact. He offered to sponsor my Partnership through his foundation, So Hum, as a way to not only support SVP at a higher level, but to help connect me with other philanthropically minded people in Portland. It has been a few (!) years since then, and not only have I met some great Portlanders through SVP, but I have learned more about my city of origin than I could have ever imagined.

Why did you decide to make a five-year commitment to SVP?

Since my father’s passing in 2016, I have taken over the presidency of So Hum, with an eye towards paying out the foundation over the next ten years, as my father wished. It has been a joy to be able to honor my Dad in this way, and like him I endeavor to get the most out of every dollar!

I am always hoping to leverage our charitable grants in any way possible. Sometimes this means “marketing” a regular annual donation as part of an event sponsorship, hosting a table for a fundraising dinner (to be seated with potential donors), or funding less-exciting but necessary expenses like office overhead. One of the most effective ways that we optimize our charitable giving is by making multi-year commitments. This allows our charities to plan a few years forward with confidence, and saves them money, time and effort, because they do not need to reapply to us for support every year.

What would you like to see from your fellow SVP Partners?

Most of us do not realize how much time, effort and expense goes into fundraising for any nonprofit organization. These organizations often feel that they must pander to their donors to achieve any kind of long-term security. As donors, we don’t usually factor that time and effort into the bottom line.

To my fellow Partners, I would say this: as donors, we must be diligent about who and what we invest in. When you have found an organization you trust, making a multi year financial commitment takes your support to a new depth. If you believe in the vision and skills of SVP Portland’s staff and investment partners, and want to truly empower their efforts, please consider making the most out of your investment with a multi-year commitment.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

A day when I am “caught up” enough to do some sewing, gardening, or baking is heaven!

Partners like you make all our work in the community possible through your investments of time and money. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, your financial contributions to SVP are tax deductible. Please fill out a new multi-year SVP Partner Pledge here online, or contact Matt Little, SVP Portland’s Director of Investor Partnership, to learn more.

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