Community Foundations

Community foundations are grantmaking public charities that are dedicated to improving the lives of people in a defined local geographic area. They bring together the financial resources of individuals, families, and businesses to support effective nonprofits in their communities. Community foundations vary widely in asset size, ranging from less than $100,000 to more than $1.7 billion.

Community foundations play a key role in identifying and solving community problems. In 2011, they gave an estimated $4.3 billion to a variety of nonprofit activities in fields that included the arts and education, health and human services, the environment, and disaster relief. The Community Foundations National Standards Board confirms operational excellence in six key areas—mission, structure, and governance; resource development; stewardship and accountability; grantmaking and community leadership; donor relations; and communications. Foundations that comply with these standards can display the official National Standards Seal. Right now nearly 500 community foundations have earned the seal.

More than 750 community foundations operate in urban and rural areas in every state in the United States; currently, more than 570 belong to the Council on Foundations. The community foundation model also has taken hold around the world. According to the 2010 Community Foundation Global Status Report, there are 1,680 community foundations in 51 countries. Forty-six percent exist outside of the United States. You can use our Community Foundation Locator to view a list of community foundations in the United States.

Below is everything on our site for community foundations. You can use the filtering options on the right to narrow these results.

The 2012 Grantmakers Salary Tables provide aggregate information on U.S. foundation staff salaries and benefits. Free to participants and Council members and $79 for nonmembers, these tables present information on 34 staff positions across multiple foundation types (community, private, operating, and other), asset sizes and geographic regions. Tables provide the mean, median, range, 25th and 75th percentiles. These tables are included as Chapter 6 in the full 2012 Grantmakers Salary and Benefits Report.

Local Issues. Local Solutions.

Donor advised funds are a unique philanthropic tool. They allow donors to establish accounts at institutions, such as community foundations, and remain involved in supporting the causes and issues they care about. Community foundations oversee and manage funds on behalf of families, groups, or individuals and, in many cases, have the discretion to direct some of the resources to priority causes the foundation identifies. Together DAFs and community foundations are brining local solutions to the causes and issues that matter most.

Community Foundation Fundamentals

Ashley Allison, Executive Director, Waco Foundation

Mike Batchelor, President, Erie Community Foundation

Veronica Blake, Chief Financial Officer, Placer Community Foundation

Peter Dunn, President and CEO, Central New York Community Foundation

Brian Frederick, President, The Community Foundation of Greater Lorain County

Carol Golden, Executive Vice President & Chief Philanthropy Officer, The Rhode Island Foundation

Mary Jalonick, Executive Director, The Dallas Foundation

DAY ONE
7:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:00 a.m.  Welcome, Overview and Introductions
  • Overview
  • National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations
  • Activity: Class introductions
8:45 a.m.

Foundation CEOs and trustees share insights and personal stories related to significant paths of change and how they overcame setbacks. Download a copy and gain best practices to help you successfully lead your foundation, boards and staff.

20 pages

The Principles were created by representatives of more than 40 charitable sector organizations including the Council on Foundations (the working group coordinator), Independent Sector, InterAction and Grantmakers Without Borders, as an alternative to the U.S. Treasury Department's Voluntary Anti-Terrorist Guidelines.

2005, 14 pages

This report presents 2011 salaries and compensation trends over a wide range of positions and grantmaking entities—community, private (family and independent) and public foundations and corporate grantmakers. Based on actual salaries, the report covers 34 positions and provides mean, median, range, 25th, and 75th percentile figures. In addition to analyzing salaries and compensation trends, the full 2011 Grantmakers Salary and Benefits Report includes data on staff demographics, salary administration, and benefits.

2011, 88 pages

This report presents 2011 salaries and compensation trends over a wide range of positions and grantmaking entities-community foundations, private foundations (family and independent), public foundations, and corporate grantmakers. Based on actual salaries, the report covers 34 positions and allows grantmakers to benchmark compensation against their peers by foundation type, size, and region. The report also offers extensive information on benefits policies and practices and includes new data on health-care premiums by plan type.

 

Community Foundations Handbook introduces community foundation CEOs and their staffs to choices—about governance, management, administration, and resource development. Although written primarily for staff, the chapters are broad enough that board members and volunteers will find them valuable. For newcomers, this handbook will serve as a comprehensive orientation to the field. For seasoned staff seeking professional development, it provides a useful refresher.

2006, 274 pages

Pages

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