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We Are Philanthropy: Maria Bechily

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“We Are Philanthropy,” a collection of short films that feature inspiring and diverse donors, will appear on the D5 blog over the next few months. Produced by D5 and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, the films highlight how diverse philanthropists bring their life experiences to their philanthropy as they strive to achieve community impact.


This film features Maria Bechily, a philanthropist based in Chicago which has been her home since she left Cuba as a refugee in 1961. Maria is the founder of one of the first public relations and marketing agencies to target Hispanics in Chicago. She is also a former board member of the Chicago Community Trust, and the co-founder of Nuestro Futuro, an identity-focused fund at the Chicago Community Trust. Despite her deep and long-standing commitment to giving back to the community, Maria says, “To this day, I feel humbled… when I’m called a philanthropist.”

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