Dr. Linda Hood Talbott, a 50-year charter initiate of Lambda Zeta/U of Missouri–Kansas City, was honored for 50 years of membership at the spring Eleusinia, April 2011.
Chi Omegas Flourish
Philanthropies Flourish Worldwide, Thanks to Chi Omega Sister
For more than 35 years, Dr. Linda Hood
Talbott has assisted thousands of individuals
and organizations to flourish by helping
them gain greater access to education,
economic self-sufficiency, health care, social
services, and a better quality of life.
Linda is the first to say both her professional
and civic contributions are a “labor
of love.” Still, not many get a mention in
Great Women of the 21st Century or recognition
by Presidents Carter, Reagan, and
Clinton. Additionally, she was honored by
the U of Missouri–Kansas City (UMKC)
as Alumna of the Year 1989–90, and in
2011, she was inducted into the International
Hall of Fame, Cambridge, England,
as an “extraordinary role model, humanitarian,
and philanthropic leader.”
In her hometown of Kansas City, Missouri
her leadership helped advance opportunities
for women and girls as she co-founded
three entities for their personal and professional
development, networking, and
job-search training and resources. Worldwide, she has lectured on corporate social responsibility
as an American ambassador at a World Forum at Oxford U in Great Britian;
helped improve maternal and child health care in Moscow; and taught Chinese women
how to work with American companies. Through her personal philanthropic support,
she helped more than 20 women complete their doctoral research and become established
professionals in diverse fields in the United States, United Kingdom, China, and Nigeria.
It all started in 1975 when Linda became CEO of The Clearinghouse for Midcontinent
Foundations, a new association of local and regional grantmakers. There, for 18 years,
she was a pioneer in philanthropic research, trend analysis, and communications; she
launched the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, convened philanthropic issue
forums, and provided the community’s first training programs in effective grant-making
and grant-seeking. With the advent of computerization, Linda created the nation’s first
community philanthropic information system and established the nation’s first urban inner-
city network of high school-based clinics, designing a paradigm that continues today.
Her leadership in the community was such that in 1983, she became Kansas City’s first
woman to serve on a Fortune 100 corporation board when she took her seat on the boards
of Kansas City Power & Light and Great Plains Energy.
In 1988, Linda and her husband, Tom, established Talbott & Associates, a philanthropic
management consulting practice, and The Center for Philanthropic Leadership, a leadership
development firm. Both entities assist worldwide in raising millions of dollars for
capital, endowment, operating, and strategic project support. Subsequently, the couple
also established The Linda H. & Thomas H. Talbott Scholarship & Leadership Award,
given to an undergraduate in the U of Missouri–Kansas City College of Arts & Sciences.
She is also a donor to the Chi Omega Foundation.
As an undergraduate at UMKC, Linda studied English and literature, was a campus
beauty queen, and a charter member of Lambda Zeta Chapter.