Family Foundations

The Council on Foundations defines a family foundation as one whose funds are derived from members of a single family, though this is not a legal term and has no precise definition. The Council on Foundations suggests that family foundations have at least one family member serving as an officer or board member of the foundation and, as the donor, that individual (or a relative) must play a significant role in governing and/or managing the foundation. Most family foundations are run by family members who serve as trustees or directors on a voluntary basis. In many cases, second- and third-generation descendants of the original donors manage the foundation.

Family foundations make up over half of all private (family, corporate, independent, and operating) foundations, or 40,456 out of approximately 73,764 foundations (Foundation Center, 2011). Family foundations make up approximately one-third of the Council’s membership.

Family foundations range in asset size from a few hundred thousand dollars to more than $1 billion. The holdings of family foundations total approximately $294 billion, or about 44 percent of all foundation holdings of $662 billion. Despite this, three out of five family foundations hold assets of less than $1 million. Family foundations gave away approximately $21.3 billion in grants in 2011 (The Foundation Center, 2011).

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

Hit by one of the largest U.S. disasters since Hurricane Sandy, residents and communities in the State of Louisiana are experiencing historic flooding and need your help. Several deaths have been attributed to the flooding, tens of thousands of people have been evacuated, and thousands are currently in shelters. Federal and state government aid won’t be enough; our charitable contributions are critical to helping thousands of families and individuals recover and rebuild. 

D5’s Final State of the Work highlights voices of leaders in the field who share their stories of change and progress.  Some are longtime advocates; some are newer enthusiasts. Each of them shares a perspective on what has worked and what challenges remain as they lead their institutions through changes to meet the demands of a new America.

This final report catalogs the stories that tell of human impact and human struggle to create a more equitable philanthropy. Some of these stories are:

Promoting economic development is not, by itself, a charitable purpose. Grantmakers seeking to help people and communities achieve economic self-sufficiency must therefore find a connection between a proposed activity and one or more recognized charitable purposes. In this Legal Lunch Series, Suzanne and Bryan will discuss IRS rulings, court cases and activities proposed by members to help explain what is needed in order to make grants for economic development.

This webinar will provide members with an opportunity to obtain a detailed understanding of the Overtime Rule directly from the Department of Labor. In addition, the Council’s attorneys will explain how the Rule applies to Foundations and answer some prevalent questions that have surfaced.

Speakers Will Include: 



Justin Aiken
Corporate Cousel
Council on Foundations

Healthy relationships are at the core of any foundation's success. One of the most important relationships is that of the CEO and their Trustees. In a successful relationship, board members are more engaged, management is better aligned, and the mission is advanced. 

This quarter's member update will focus principally on important issues related to foundation financial management and endowment performance. We will look in depth at the Council's recent research on endowments and preview our upcoming Endowments and Finance Summit in New York City. We will discuss how members might better understand their own institution's financial management and investment performance in broader context. 

 

August is here, which means your Members of Congress have ventured outside of the beltway for an extended stay in their districts—otherwise known as your communities.

The 2016 HR Summit: Investing in the Talent Pipeline, co-hosted by the Council on Foundations and CHANGE Philanthropy (formerly JAG), is your unique opportunity to learn how to make your foundation — and philanthropy as a whole — more diverse, equitable, and inclusive.

During this convening you can expect engaging, intimate conversations led by field experts focused on:

On May 18, President Obama and Secretary Perez of the Department of Labor (DOL) announced the publication of a final rule updating the overtime regulations. The Final Rule increases the salary threshold for eligibility of overtime compensation from $455 to $913 per week ($47,476 annually for a full-year worker), and does not include an exemption for nonprofits. This rule will go into effect on December 1, 2016—allowing employers six months to prepare for implementation.