66% of Austinites feel uninformed about the issues.
89% say they would give to a specific need in the community.

Why We’re Here

I Live Here, I Give Here’s mission is to deepen and expand the culture of personal philanthropy by inspiring Central Texans to invest more money in our community. We educate and connect individuals and non-profits so more Central Texans experience the personal benefit of increased philanthropy.

I Live Here, I Give Here’s mission is to deepen and expand the culture of personal philanthropy by inspiring Central Texans to invest more money in our community. We educate and connect individuals and non-profits so more Central Texans experience the personal benefit of increased philanthropy.

Did you know that according to a study done by The Chronicle of Philanthropy in 2012, Austin is ranked 32nd out of the 50 largest cities in the nation in per capita charitable giving? This is a big improvement over our ranking at the beginning of the 21st century when we ranked 48, but there is still a lot of room for growth!

Austin is a vibrant city with a personality all its own. Central Texans are passionate, driven, and generous volunteers of their time and talent. But that’s not enough. The biggest problem facing Austin Nonprofits is there is not enough money.

Our community is well known for cherishing its environment and local businesses, its time to nurture our home-grown nonprofits in the same way!

We depend on our nonprofits to meet so many of the Austin's most basic needs; but the shortage of funds for these organizations is creating large gaps in services.

This is where I Live Here, I Give Here steps in. Our main purpose is to connect people like YOU with the issues you care about and the Nonprofits that support them.

I Live Here, I Give Here is proud of the work we have accomplished since our launch in 2007. We connect the people of Austin with the causes they care about.

We partner with nonprofit groups so they can be more accessible to you. We spotlight specific needs in Austin every month to let you know how you can help.

Please check out our Programs and get to know our Board Members and Staff!

How Are We Doing?

Are you human? Prove it. How much is 3 + 7

The BIG Give — Recognizing Charities and Nonprofit Organizations in Austin, TX.

Nominate the 2019 BIG Giver!

Amplify Austin is back! 6pm March 20, 2014. $4 Million in 24 Hours.

The People Behind I Live Here, I Give Here

Who We Are:

Our Bios:

Blaire Kniffin

Blaire Kniffin
Assistant Director of Nonprofit Relations

(512) 432 - 1925

As Assistant Director of Nonprofit Relations, Blaire is the direct contact for all of our nonprofit Partners. She guarantees that each nonprofit is able to maximize their benefits of Partnership with I Live Here, I Give Here. Blaire actively works through our Community Needs Spotlight Calendar to relay to the public the challenges and needs of each nonprofit. 

Previously to her role with I Live Here, I Give Here, Blaire served as a Fundraising Department Assistant at Dell Children’s Medical Center Foundation. In college, Blaire interned with Elizabeth Christian Public Relations and then served as a post-graduate fellow for H+K Strategies global public relations firm. 

Blaire is native to Austin. She has her Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Saint Edward’s University and served as the public relations chair for the Public Relations Student Society of America for two years. In her free moments, Blaire won’t say no to a good live show at some of her favorite music venues around town and frequently indulges in a delicious tex-mex meal. She practices yoga at Wanderlust Live in the Warehouse District, and is an active member of I Live Here, I Give Here’s program, Austin Involved

You can e-mail Blaire at Blaire@ILiveHereIGiveHere.Org.

Celeste Flores

Celeste Flores
Director of Community Engagement

(512) 432 - 1936

As Director of Community Engagement at I Live Here, I Give Here, Celeste Flores is responsible for Austin Involved, where we are connecting young professionals to meaningful philanthropic opportunities.  She also works to engage future philanthropists with mentors through our programs, Give Back Jack and See Jane Give.  And with a committee, Celeste plans the annual I Live Here, I Give Here Big Give! event.

Before joining the I Live Here, I Give Here team, Celeste did regional grantmaking for Foundation for the Carolinas, a 12-county community foundation based in Charlotte. She has also previously held development positions at University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, Texas Children’s Hospital and United Way of the Texas Gulf Coast.

Celeste recently moved from Charlotte, NC where she served on the board of the Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, Leaders Under 40 Inaugural class and the Junior League.  She has a passion for the performing arts and creating exposure to the arts for children and underserved communities.  She grew up in San Antonio, but spent a number of years living in Houston and Charlottesville, VA.  She now calls Austin home and enjoys discovering her new city with husband, Ray.

You can e-mail Celeste at Celeste@ILiveHereIGiveHere.Org.

Emily Wheeler

Emily Wheeler
Infrastructure & Operations Manager

(512) 432 - 1926

As Infrastructure & Operations Manager, Emily is the go-to person for daily operations at I Live Here, I Give Here. She ensures that the team has the appropriate internal operational support and structure to deliver excellent work product while facilitating the social media efforts of the organization through the I Live Here, I Give Here website.

Previously, Emily served as a Senior Policy Analyst with a Texas State Senator, thriving on her passion to help Texans through public policy.  Prior to her Texas migration in 2008, Emily was raised in Andover, Massachusetts and called Montreal, Canada her home for over seven years, where she worked as a Project Manager for an international law research center. Emily chose Austin to be her home because of the warm people - and weather! She is passionate about making the world a better place, volunteering with several Austin nonprofits, as well as the UNITAR Afghanistan Fellowship Program. Emily has her Master in Business Administration in nonprofit management and social policy from Brandeis University. In her spare time, she is an avid yoga enthusiast and enjoys learning languages; Emily is currently studying Hindi.

You can e-mail Emily at Emily@ILiveHereIGiveHere.Org.

Tom Spencer

Tom Spencer
Executive Director

Tom Spencer is the Executive Director of I Live Here, I Give Here. In this role, Tom leads a collaboration of individual philanthropists, nonprofit organizations, family foundations, local businesses and religious leaders, growing the culture of philanthropy in Central Texas by increasing awareness of the local needs and the role each of us can play in creating solutions. This pioneering movement to deepen and expand the culture of personal philanthropy in our community is built on public awareness, nonprofit mobilization, and donor education.  

Tom served on the Board of I Live Here, I Give Here prior to assuming the helm as Executive Director.  He is the Former CEO of Interfaith Action of Central Texas, where he led efforts that more than doubled the organization’s annual budget and the implementation of structural reforms that modernized the agency and ensured its sustainability. During his tenure at iACT, Tom worked to expand and fund the agency’s direct service programs: Hands on Housing and the iACT for Refugees School.  In 2009 he was awarded the “Peace Award” from the Institute for Interfaith Dialog for his work at building trust between the faith traditions. In 2011, The Pluralism Project, an organization associated with Harvard University’s School of Divinity produced a case study about iACT focusing on its growth under Tom’s leadership. 

Prior to being hired by iACT in 2008, Tom served as a Host and Producer for KLRU-TV, Austin’s Public Television station for over twenty-five years. Tom won many awards and honors for his work on television. His documentary, The Painted Churches of Texas: Echoes of the Homeland won the National Educational Television Association’s award for Historical Documentary of the Year (2001.) In 2003 the Austin Chronicle named Tom “Best TV Moderator” as a part of its annual “Best of Austin Awards” issue.  Since 1983 Tom has also produced and hosted a weekly radio program on gardening for KLBJ-AM. He is the author of numerous articles and columns on gardening and landscape design. He also currently hosts the Central Texas Gardener, a weekly gardening program presented by KLRU.  

Tom is very active in the civic affairs of Austin and has served on the Board of Directors for CAN, the Community Advancement Network; The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (the local FEMA Board); and The Ecumenical and Interreligious Leadership Network. He served as a member of the Steering Committee for the Austin / Travis County Hate Crimes Task Force, The Austin Housing Repair Coalition, The Mayor's Task Force on Aging, and, in 2011 – 2012, was appointed to the Bond Election Advisory Task Force for the City of Austin.


Our Programs

Give Back Jack — Inspiring Men to Give to Charities and Nonprofit Organizations in Austin, TX.

Visit with Austin’s most influential men, and enjoy an evening out while you learn how you too can make a difference in your community.

See Jane Give — Inspiring Women to Give Charities and Nonprofit Organizations in Austin, TX.

Get motivated by our highly accomplished and inspiring women speakers! Network and mingle with like-minded women who love being involved in the community.

Community Spotlight — Spotlighting Charities and Nonprofit Organizations in Austin, TX.

Every month we highlight a specific problem in Austin. Learn in-depth insights from area experts by viewing our videos and reading our monthly issue paper.

The BIG Give — Recognizing Charities and Nonprofit Organizations in Austin, TX.

The ultimate celebration for Austin’s most deserving Nonprofits! Join our annual party that celebrates the act of giving and receiving.

Amplify Austin — Our Big Day of Giving in Austin

Austin is a great place to live, but we want to make it the best place that gives. Join us for our annual day of giving and help raise $1 million in 24-hours!

Austin Involved

If you’ve wanted to give back to Austin but you didn’t think you had enough time or money, or you didn’t know where to start, now you can. Join Austin Involved!

Thanks to I Live Here, I Give Here® Sponsors

International Paper University Federal Credit Union

98 San Jacinto Blvd., Suite 1200, Austin, Texas 78701
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