FYI Blog

Clients in the News – January 2013

Avalon clients have been busy making news, so we have lots to cover:


  • In the wake of the horrific shootings in Newtown, Connecticut in December, we’re proud that three lawmakers with whom we work closely have quickly stepped forward to address the gun control issue. Just days after the tragedy, Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) announced that he will introduce legislation early this year to ban high-capacity magazines, like the type used in the tragedy. More recently, on the two-year anniversary of the Tucson shooting that gravely injured Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, Sen. Lautenberg called on Vice President Biden’s Gun Violence Task Force to include his commonsense gun safety solutions in its recommendations. For more details on the Lautenberg bill, see the recent article in the Huffington Post. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) spoke passionately on the Senate floor, calling for a national conversation on how we can better protect our children from gun violence. You can read Sen. Cardin’s compelling speech here. On the U.S. House side, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) has been tapped to serve as a Vice Chair of a new congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force that will look into measures Congress can take to reduce gun violence and prevent mass shootings like the Sandy Hook attack.
  • On a lighter note, The National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) held its own inaugural ball – the Native Nations Inaugural Ball — on January 21. This spectacular fundraiser and celebration of President Obama’s second term highlighted the self-determination of Native nations by featuring music, dancing, and Native cuisine. Funds raised will support NMAI’s educational programs. Go to the Museum’s website for more on the Ball.
  • Visit the National Museum of Women in the Arts’ (NMWA) website for information on the exciting new exhibitions the Museum has in store for 2013. To pique your interest, two shows open in February — A World Apart: Anna Ancher and the Skagen Art Colony focuses on Danish painter Anna Ancher (1859-1935), and her circle of Impressionist colleagues at Skagen; And Freya Grand: Minding the Landscape, described on the Museum’s website: “…Freyda Grand[‘s] landscapes express a profound connection with the earth, evoking the exhilaration, wonder, and serenity she experiences when traveling to remote sites where nature abounds and any evidence of humankind is absent.”
  • Philanthropedia is out with its new ranking of nonprofits, and we’re thrilled to announce that the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force was ranked #5 within its nonprofit sector. To compile its list, Philanthropedia surveys experts like foundation professionals, researchers, and nonprofit senior staff (people who have eight to 20+ years of experience in their sector). They recommend nonprofits based on their impact and other organizational strengths, although experts are not allowed to recommend the organization at which they work. To see the full rankings, go to
  • Following the retirement of longtime leader Terrence D. Jones, Arvind Manocha has just begun his tenure as the President and CEO of Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts. Mr. Manocha came to Wolf Trap from his position as COO of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where he oversaw the Hollywood Bowl venue. In a recent interview (which you can read here), he spoke about what drew him to Wolf Trap: “It’s a very special organization that embraces classical, opera, rock, pop, country, jazz and everything in between. All that, plus an amazing education program and two incredible venues to work with, added up to a very strong pull for me.” We look forward to working with Mr. Manocha.
  • The National Constitution Center, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2013, recently named former Florida Governor Jeb Bush as its new Chairman of the Board. As NCC announced, “Continuing a tradition of extraordinary leadership, Governor Bush will succeed Presidents William J. Clinton and [Governor Bush’s] father George H.W. Bush, among other distinguished Board chairmen.” For more information on Governor Bush’s appointment and tenure, visit