Jeff Cain

Jeff co-founded American Philanthropic, LLC, with Jeremy Beer in 2009. In 2016 Jeff was recruited by CrossFit, Inc.’s founder and owner to manage the global fitness enterprise as its Chief Executive Officer. He served in that role for three years prior to the company’s sale in 2020.

Jeff has worked in a variety of executive and leadership roles in foundations and non-profits. From 2009-2014 he was president, director, and member of the Arthur N. Rupe Foundation based in Santa Barbara, California. He also served as a director and secretary of the Lillian S. Wells Foundation in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, from 2010-2013 and as a director of the CrossFit Foundation from 2016-2019.

Prior to working on the giving side of the philanthropic ledger, Jeff worked in various executive leadership roles at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute in Wilmington, DE, from 2001-2008, including Executive Vice President and Vice President for Institutional Advancement.

He recently authored with Jeremy Beer The Forgotten Foundations of Fundraising: Practical Advice and Contrarian Wisdom for Nonprofit Leaders (Wiley, 2019)He is also author of Protecting Donor Intent: How to Define and Safeguard Your Philanthropic Intentions (Philanthropy Roundtable, 2012). Jeff has also published numerous popular and scholarly articles and reviews in the areas of philanthropy, English literature, urban planning, public policy, and fundraising.

During his graduate studies, Jeff taught Composition, Sixteenth- and Seventeenth-Century literature, and Greek and Roman literature in the English department at Washington State University (where he received an M.A. and Ph.D. in English literature). He also founded a public policy nonprofit (the Columbia Public Interest Policy Institute) in his native Washington State, where he resides today.

Jeff served honorably in the United States Marine Corps as a combat motorcycle operator in the Second Marine Division.

The rise and decline of Big Philanthropy in America

It has reconstituted the very system that Alexis de Tocqueville once famously lauded Americans for not having. Meaningful reform will be of the hatchet, not the scalpel variety.

Do More Than Give: A particularly dangerous book

The authors of “Do More Than Give” help their readers graduate to “catalytic philanthropy,” growing out of the adolescent practice of giving based on affection, connection, gratitude, or caring.

Answering the call to greater effectiveness in your charitable giving

Sometimes the most effective giving is small, personal, and even “under the table.” That can have the greatest impact in a person’s life.