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Five Questions with Dan Sullivan
By Jean Cohoon / June 16, 2014 /   Loading Disqus...

Dan Sullivan and his wife, Kathy, established a donor advised fund at the Foundation in 2012. Here, Dan answers questions about the causes they support, what inspires him to give, and his hope for Rhode Island’s future.


  1. What do you support through the Rhode Island Foundation?

    We support many things. Our overall mission is to support children, but it does cross over into other areas. We definitely support the Boys & Girls Club of Pawtucket, Boy Scouts of America – Narragansett Council, and Hasbro Children’s Hospital. We also support some elderly causes like Home & Hospice Care of Rhode Island, the Catholic Church, and organizations helping people living in poverty like McAuley House and Amos House. It’s a broad range of organizations.

  2. Why did you choose to partner with the Foundation?

    The Rhode Island Foundation has a tremendous knowledge of nonprofits in the area. You have a pulse on the market, on the philanthropic side, for all of Rhode Island. The Foundation has a good sense of what’s happening and what’s moving things forward in the nonprofit world.

  3. What inspires you to give?

    Basically I’ve always been fortunate to have success in my career, and I think it’s important to give back. It seems that the more you give, the better you do in life. It’s good to give back and it’s always been a part of my personal philosophy and my family’s philosophy. It’s something I learned from my parents.

  4. What was your first act of philanthropy?

    I really don’t remember what I did first, but I do remember that about five years after I graduated from college I started to give back to my alma mater, and I continue to do that today. We’ve also always given to the church.

  5. What is your hope for Rhode Island?

    My hope for Rhode Island is that it makes the drastic changes necessary to become the place people want to come to. People like Rhode Island’s natural beauty, its people, and its diversity of culture and ethnicities. But it can be hard to do business in Rhode Island because of some tax and other business issues. There’s a lot of talented leadership around the state. With the right leadership – people who are willing to make important changes – Rhode Island could be a place where people want to do business.


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