Spotlight on Philanthropy

Spotlight on UMB Foundation Board Trustee Scott Canuel, CFP, CFA

Scott Canuel’s business expertise focuses on banking and wealth management services.

Scott Canuel is an executive director and Baltimore market team lead for J.P. Morgan Private Bank. He exclusively serves high-net-worth customers, and his expertise focuses on an array of banking and wealth management services. Before joining J.P. Morgan, Canuel was part of the wealth management division of PNC, outlining strategies, processes, and tools used by wealth managers. Canuel is a graduate of Towson University and received his master’s in finance from Loyola University Maryland. He joined the University of Maryland Baltimore Foundation (UMBF) Board of Trustees in 2019.

In addition to his service to the UMBF board, Canuel is active in his community, serving on the Board of Directors for Ronald McDonald House of Maryland. He previously served as Chairman of the Board for Mount Saint Joseph High School and Chairman of the Board of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. He also served on the boards of Associated Black Charities and My Brother’s Keeper, as well as treasurer for the U.S. Lacrosse U-19 World Championships and Women’s World Cup events.

SPOTLIGHT: How did you first get involved with UMB?

SCOTT CANUEL: In 2018, I joined JPMorgan Chase to open our Baltimore J.P. Morgan Private Bank office in Harbor East. It was just me and one other private banker at the time, and about a year later I joined the UMB Foundation Board of Trustees. Having spent most of my life in Baltimore, I wanted to find a way to help improve outcomes in my community by investing my time and knowledge in making connections with local organizations. I met our board chair, Dr. Harry Knipp, in a social setting, and the conversation quickly turned to how UMB was investing and creating change in West Baltimore. The more I learned about the work the University was doing, I was hooked. When given the opportunity to sit on the board, I felt like it was the perfect opportunity for me to work alongside UMB and help them advance their mission of better educating our communities. I have enjoyed every minute of my time with our fellow Board of Trustees members.

Why did the UMB mission speak to you? How does it align with your work at J.P. Morgan? 

UMB’s mission — “To improve the human condition and serve the public good of Maryland and society at-large through education, research, clinical care, and service” — aligns well to both my personal life and professional work at J.P. Morgan. As a firm, we are dedicated to improving all communities through our flexible capital investments, business initiatives, and philanthropic commitments.

This year, we announced a $20 million, five-year commitment to help advance racial equity in Baltimore’s underserved communities. Additionally, in April of 2021, the University of Maryland, College Park’s National Center for Smart Growth was awarded a $3 million philanthropic investment to create a national “community of practice” and help prevent the displacement of small businesses in rapidly gentrifying U.S. metropolitan areas.

Being able to help our communities grow and thrive opens opportunities to all. Having the extensive global philanthropic knowledge and scale of JPMorgan Chase here in my hometown and combining that with UMB’s mission has been a very rewarding endeavor.

Can you tell us more about the J.P. Morgan Advancing Cities grant that was awarded to Baltimore City with UMB as a partner in West Baltimore?  

JPMorgan Chase’s Advancing Cities Challenge is an annual competition where the firm sources innovative and sustainable ideas that are designed to help advance equity in communities across the U.S. Last year, the firm asked for proposals designed for and by Black and Latina women to address racial and gender wealth gaps.

Baltimore was selected from hundreds of proposals nationwide. In fact, two of the six winning collaborations are from our region: Washington, D.C., and Baltimore. Each Advancing Cities winner was awarded $5 million to advance and help source solutions for women who have been disproportionately impacted by the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Baltimore, the winning collaboration was POWER: Prioritizing Our Women’s Economic Rise Collaborative. The group is made up of the Latino Economic Development Center of Washington, D.C.; UMB’s Community Engagement Center; Black Women Build Baltimore; Baltimore-D.C. Building Trades; Byte Back; and Baltimore Community Lending.

Why was UMB selected as a partner, and how will it contribute to the Advancing Cities mission? 

Sixty-six percent of Black and Latino households in Baltimore meet the standard for liquid-asset poverty. The largest percentage of those experiencing poverty are women between the ages of 25 and 54, with 50 percent of this population also being cost-burdened renters.

The UMB Community Engagement Center is a key partner to the POWER Collaborative that was developed to create a continuum of wealth-building programs for Black and Latina women real estate developers in West Baltimore. UMB’s involvement includes helping to provide educational training space for Black and Latina female developers who are working to transform West Baltimore’s communities.

JPMorgan Chase’s $5 million investment in the collaboration will provide small business development resources, workforce skills training, affordable real estate development, and homeownership opportunities for Black, Hispanic, and Latina women in West Baltimore.

UMB President Bruce Jarrell (third from right) and Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott (center) were among the attendees at the January 2022 announcement of a $20 million J.P. Morgan Advancing Cities grant awarded to the city of Baltimore.

What are your hopes for the future of UMB, J.P. Morgan, and their joint impact in Baltimore, the state of Maryland, and beyond?

My personal goal is that UMB and the POWER Collaborative create the intended change that will greatly impact Baltimore’s neighborhoods that need the most TLC. This program will also help to close the racial wealth gap by improving economic opportunities for Black and Latina women. The broader hope is that this program will serve as a reminder for how the power of public, private, and government collaboration can create positive outcomes and change.

Why do you give to UMB?

It’s hard not to be inspired when you learn what UMB is and its importance in not only the region, but also in the city of Baltimore. The University has a global impact with world-renowned professional schools and academic/medical research. However, the true magic in UMB is its connection and care for the Baltimore community, whether through the Community Engagement Center, the CURE Scholars Program, or empowering middle and high school students in West Baltimore to be competitive in STEM-related careers. I am honored to be a trustee and proud to contribute to the future of UMB.

UMBF, Inc., is a tax-exempt corporation, exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and recognized by UMB’s governing board as an affiliated foundation of UMB.

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Kate Ostrowski

Kate Ostrowski, MPP, is the associate director, foundation operations and compliance, and board relations, in the Office of Philanthropy at the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

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