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Robert J. Rosenthal
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Robert J. Rosenthal is a traveler, NGO guy, social good expert, and technology aficionado who currently lives in Kathmandu, Nepal, where he is writing a book about volunteering due out in 2015 from Wiley & Sons.

Most recently he was the VP of Communications & Marketing at VolunteerMatch, the Web's most popular volunteer network. Before joining VolunteerMatch, Robert developed the communications for a $26 million fundraising campaign for the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, helped build and sell a high-rise building, ran his own consulting firm, survived the dot-com era, edited publications for an association of publishers, and lived in Jerusalem.

He is a frequent public speaker on subjects of nonprofits, service, and technology, including recent appearances at Nonprofit Technology Conference, SXSW, and the National Conference on Volunteering and Service. Robert is a native of Tucson, Ariz., where at least it's a dry heat.

You can follow him on Twitter at @socialgoodR or read his blog,

Entries by Robert J. Rosenthal

The Nepal Earthquake: One Month On

(2) Comments | Posted May 26, 2015 | 1:19 PM

A month after Nepal's most devastating earthquake in 80 years, there are at least a few things to be optimistic about.

A grassroots volunteer effort mobilized tens of thousands of Nepalese and international citizens to come together to get aid into remote parts of the country. The global funding community has...

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Why #TheDress Is the Most Important Meme of the Year

(0) Comments | Posted March 3, 2015 | 2:13 PM


It's been fun to watch pundits try to add something -- anything -- of value to a worldwide discussion about a $77 dress., for example, returned more than 29 million hits today for "TheDress", comments which seem to generally fall into three...

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5 Reasons Why I'm Mellow on Ello (For Now)

(4) Comments | Posted September 26, 2014 | 4:09 PM


I don't usually post about consumer technology trends, but this week I've been amused and concerned by all the rumblings, especially from my Bay Area friends, about a new service called Ello. Because social media and networking platforms are...

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Falling in Love With Kathmandu's Trash Heaps

(1) Comments | Posted September 19, 2014 | 2:17 PM


There's no doubt that trash is an eyesore in Kathmandu.

I passed by this scenic example of my neighborhood trash piles today as I was out buying groceries. All over Kathmandu Valley you can find mounds of these colorful little bundles of plastic...

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7 CSR and Employee Engagement Conferences You Need to Attend This Year

(0) Comments | Posted January 9, 2014 | 3:35 PM

If you go to a lot of corporate social responsibility and cause marketing conferences each year, the beginning of the year only means one thing: The budget is set and it's time to get to work!

With many of the most interesting and innovative events of the conference calendar bunched...

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Just Liking Us On Social Media? You're Doing It All Wrong

(2) Comments | Posted July 2, 2013 | 2:56 PM


"Liking isn't helping. Be a volunteer."

That's the key message in a campaign that Publicis Singapore cooked up for its client, Crisis Relief Singapore. The ads all feature a squadron of erect thumbs crowding a black and white image...

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Recapping SXSWi: Do Nonprofits Need a Place at the Web's Biggest Event?

(0) Comments | Posted April 9, 2013 | 4:14 PM

Anyone hoping to find the next new standout consumer tech star like Twitter or Foursquare at this year's South by Southwest Interactive Conference was probably disappointed. Nothing this year truly captured everyone's imagination, or pointed to the next new toy nonprofits will be using to engage supporters.


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5 Ways to Rebuild Your SxSWi Karma at the Beacon Lounge

(0) Comments | Posted February 21, 2013 | 5:15 PM

First off, I'm not saying any of you have a karma problem. Far be it from me to judge how anyone spends their time, energy, or soul points.

Even though we live in a dog-eat-dog, nature red in tooth and claw, sink or swim world, most of us manage to...

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LinkedIn's New Board Connect: A Fresh Tack to an Old Problem for Nonprofits

(0) Comments | Posted September 18, 2012 | 5:29 PM

Nonprofits have more than 700 board-related volunteer opportunities at VolunteerMatch this week. Add these roles to the many hundreds of other non-board listings for skilled help in marketing, HR, governance, finance, operations and legal and you will begin to get a picture of the enormous need in the social...

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9 Ways Burning Man Is a Model for Involving Volunteers

(1) Comments | Posted September 5, 2012 | 2:38 PM

Far more than a modern day bacchanal, Burning Man has grown to become one of the most vibrant cultural events in the United States, spinning off art, music, urban planning, and industrial design ideas year round.

With Burning Man last week, I thought this would be a perfect...

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Just In Time For 2012 Election, Nonprofits Get Their Own PAC

(0) Comments | Posted March 12, 2012 | 9:07 AM

Thanks to the new political action committee (PAC)CForward , nonprofit organizations now have a voice on Capitol Hill. And it's about time.

Nonprofits have long lived in a strange political limbo. Despite the fact that a huge percentage of us exist to provide a social safety net for...

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Craigslist Foundation Winds Up Its Good Work... And Demonstrates the Meaning of Community

(0) Comments | Posted January 12, 2012 | 9:58 AM

This week the Craigslist Foundation announced it is ceasing operations after more than a decade of working to strengthen the work of grassroots community organizations and activists.

While the specifics of their situation are still being held closely, the immediate question on most people's minds is what'll happen...

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Gen-Xers Are Propping Up U.S. Volunteering Rates

(0) Comments | Posted August 16, 2011 | 4:09 PM


We often hear how Millennials are the most conscious consumers and that Boomers transition from careers to civic engagement. But according to a new federal report on volunteer trends,...

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What's Next in Cause-Related Marketing: The Power and Potential of Platforms

(1) Comments | Posted August 1, 2011 | 5:15 PM


Cause-related marketing has been around for some time now, but that does not mean it is a well-oiled machine yet. Consider the following three scenarios in one cause engagement example:

  1. Ainesh, communications manager at the nonprofit LitKids, is in charge of promoting programs that...
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NCVS Recap: Looking Back at Three Days of Service and Self-Empowerment in New Orleans

(1) Comments | Posted July 15, 2011 | 11:29 AM

2011-06-21-ncvs.jpgThe National Conference on Volunteering and Service, held June 6 through 8 in New Orleans, was great on so many levels, but for me the decision to place this year's biggest conference on volunteering in "NOLA" was best illustrated when...

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Patrick Corvington Out as CNCS CEO: Who's Next?

(0) Comments | Posted May 11, 2011 | 2:07 PM

Late last month the reporters at the Chronicle of Philanthropy broke news that the Corporation for National and Community Service probably wishes they hadn't. After a little more than a year on the job, Patrick Corvington, the new CEO of CNCS, would be resigning soon to take an...

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Rapid Response Volunteering After the BP Oil Spill

(5) Comments | Posted April 22, 2011 | 12:05 PM

This week marks the one-year anniversary of the disastrous BP oil spill in the Gulf, and I'm joining many others in trying to put the experience into context.

A year ago, just a few days before Earth Day, the nation watched helplessly as the first reports of fire and casualties...

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