October 30, 2011 | By wonkum |
IMPACT Leader Joshua Humbert founded the EnVest Foundation to educate, motivate and inspire philanthropists of all levels to make informed, sustainable, and legacy-building contributions to community non-profits.
With more than a decade of experience in major gift fundraising, millennial giving strategy, as well as experience as a consultant to many area non-profit organizations, Joshua Humbert brings an exceptional understanding of the core principles of development to the conversation of philanthropy.
He lectures, hosts events and programs that identify, develop and engage the foundation’s membership base to become philanthropists. He currently oversees the foundation’s 2000 More Campaign, serves as Managing Director for the Foundation and is a member of its Board of Directors. Prior to his career in philanthropy, Joshua served as a successful investment advisor with Merrill Lynch’s Private Client Group, which managed $110M in private equity.
Although he was on a desirable path to success in the corporate world, his passion and concern for people in need resulted in a shift in his career. Wanting to know more about how he could make an immediate impact on the community, Joshua took a job as Associate Director of Development for Jubilee Housing, where he successfully led and closed out a $1.5M renovation campaign within the $50M residential real estate re-development campaign in the urban core of Washington, DC.
With his early success, Joshua rounded out his philanthropic experience at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington. Mr. Humbert served as Regional Director of Development, where he was responsible for managing a $4M dollar development budget, overseeing the fundraising priorities and serving as the development liaison to their 35 member regional board of directors. Shortly thereafter he became Associate Director of Development for Emerging Markets at the University of Maryland. Currently, he is a Development Director for Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia.
Joshua holds a degree in Political Science from Norfolk State University and is enrolled in the Masters in Philanthropy program at Indiana University.
Getting to Know Joshua Humbert:
What inspired you to pursue your current career path?
I’ve always cared about people, specifically people in need. If you spoke to my mom, she would tell the story about how when I was about 10 years old, she came home after a long day at work to learn that I had completely emptied the refrigerator and gave our food away because I wanted to feed the neighborhood. I exhibited philanthropic habits at an early age. Although I didn’t know the definition of true philanthropy at the time, I knew I wanted to help people in a very personal way. At this point in my life, I’m happiest when I see others achieve their true philanthropic potential. I want people to feel that same altruistic high that I felt as a ten year-old helping to feed the neighborhood, the feeling I still feel when I help other people give back. As a person of faith, I know it’s God’s purpose for me. I am truly living a purpose-driven life.
What is the key to balancing your professional, philanthropic and social commitments?
Philanthropy is the private sector of the heart. When you are living and working your purpose, it seems impossible to balance each because they reside in concentric circles. Some in my network support professional goals, some philanthropic and some are purely social. These separations help influence my quest for balance. Then, there’s a smaller inner circle that I connect to on a deeply personal level. These people pour into me, help keep my pursuit of my long-term goals on track, strengthen my areas of weakness and tell me the truth when others won’t. In short, they have my back. I feel replenished by my inner circle; they pour into me as much as I pour into others.
Why is it important for young professionals to develop a legacy of philanthropy?
There is a natural synergy between philanthropy and a young professional’s quest for achievement. Philanthropy fosters and displays values that link people to specific causes and communities that in some cases, raises their business and personal profile. It is no secret that there has always been a strong connection between the business community and philanthropy. That’s why the EnVest foundation engages professionals across career interests. While participating in EnVest’s philanthropic curriculum and attending our networking events, our members have the opportunity to develop life-long philanthropic habits; thus, redefining the profile of a philanthropist. At EnVest, we understand that your growth as a professional undoubtedly plays a role in how you can make a difference in your community and in the lives of others.
What is the biggest mistake young professionals make?
Two Common Mistakes:
Rushing to the bright lights of an elevated position and not having the exposure and experience needed to be impactful enough to stay in that elevated position. But in the same vein, not being scared to claim what is rightfully yours in life allows you to never park a Honda where your Bentley should be.
Developing the skillset to shut-up and listen allows the consistency of exposure to sink-in and lets you understand people’s wants and needs. This has placed me in positions and rooms that otherwise would be accessible. In simple terms, don’t block your blessing along your path to success and life fulfillment.
What’s been the best experience of your career thus far (or the most rewarding)?
My love of people and seeing them fulfill their full potential in life and hoping they incorporate their own power of philanthropy sooner than later, especially in the millennial generation. This motivates me to continue the work of the EnVest Foundation.
Lastly, give me three words to sum up Joshua?
Here’s five: Understand matters of the heart.