|Dr. Patrick McNamara is currently associated with the Omaha Community Foundation. Dr. McNamara completed his Ph.D. from the School of Public Administration at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. His dissertation research, funded by a fellowship from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, focused on community culture and public-private-nonprofit collaboration. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in religion from Swarthmore College where he studied ethics and comparative religions and his Masters of Science in conflict analysis and resolution from George Mason University. He has consulted for over 20 years nationally and internationally in the areas of organizational strategy, conflict resolution and program development. He served as the Director of Philanthropic Services for six years at the Omaha Community Foundation overseeing grant programs, advising donors and working with non profits to build capacity to meet community needs. He directed the Omaha Hate Crimes Project, which was a partnership funded by the U.S. Department of Justice between the City of Omaha, community groups and law enforcement. Dr. McNamara has presented workshops and consulted in the U.S., Switzerland, Sri Lanka, South Africa and the United Kingdom. He has taught international affairs, business management, dispute resolution, public administration, group facilitation, communication and world religions at the college and graduate school level. His publications include papers and journal articles in philanthropy, nonprofit management, criminal justice, and urban studies, as well as book chapters in conflict resolution, education and urban-rural affairs.
Dr. McNamara's Fulbright-Nehru research titled "Strengthening the Community Foundation Movement in India" will explore the question – "How do Indians currently give back to local communities in rural and urban India"? The wealthy and middle classes in India have greatly increased in the last two decades. Traditional systems of giving through family connections and religious organizations remain, but creating or enhancing new institutions for giving – such as community foundations – holds great promise. Underlying his research is a particular interest in Mahatma Gandhi's philosophy of swaraj, translated as home rule, community self-sufficiency or local governance.