Five years ago Dr. Michael Kehler almost deleted an email about a visionary chair position. The position, Research Chair in Masculinities Studies at the University of Calgary, Werklund School of Education, felt a little out of his comfort zone. 

A Calgary based family donor advised fund, the Silver Gummy Foundation, is on the ground working to change the narrative around diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). As a private family fund, the foundation invests in impact, following a genuine need to be agents for change, rather than for philanthropic recognition. The Foundation’s mission is to use education to reduce gender-based violence by facilitating conversations with youth while their outlook on gender is still developing. Advocates for change, the Chair position is an investment in not only education, but also awareness.

Relocating his family to Calgary for the position, support from the Silver Gummy Foundation has allowed Dr. Kehler to grow and marry his research and expertise with his activism, enabling him to take the conversation out in the open. From collaborating on an international research scale, hosting public events, a Tedx YYC talk, to working with elementary school kids in Calgary, Dr. Kehler has been finding new and innovative ways to disrupt and draw more people into the conversation. He credits the foresight and innovation of the Silver Gummy Foundation to see the potential in this position and for giving him the opportunity and freedom to put a spotlight on gender-based violence, diversity phobias and rethinking masculinity.  

Dr. Kehler is excited and passionate about the privilege of taking on a second term in this Chair. The past five years has given him the foundation and support to elevate the discussion both within and beyond the academic realm. His research has garnered national and international attention and his ability to translate academia to the real world has made him a sought-after speaker and advisor. 

The conversation can be uncomfortable. But ignoring it only makes it more so. Looking ahead to the next five-year term, thanks to the Silver Gummy Foundation, Dr. Kehler is looking to continue to impact change and is excited to be the advocate out there inviting more people to step out of their comfort zones and think differently about masculinity.

For more information on how a donor advised fund can help you be an advocate for change visit