Independent Foundations

Private foundations make grants based on charitable endowments. The endowment funds come from one or a small handful of sources -- an individual, a family or a corporation. Because of their endowments, they are focused primarily on grantmaking and generally do not raise funds or seek public financial support the way public charities (like community foundations) must.

Private independent foundations are distinct from private family or corporate foundations in that an independent foundation is not governed by the benefactor, the benefactor’s family or a corporation. Of the largest private foundations in the United States, most are independent foundations, although they may have begun as family foundations or were converted from corporate foundations. There is no official IRS or legal definition of independent foundations, so it is difficult to arrive at statistics that are fully representative of the field.

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

Today, more than 30,000 organizations, countless individuals, and a host of policymakers are celebrating the importance and impact of charitable giving and philanthropy.

Postponed due to inclement Weather

Philanthropy holds a unique role in American society. Philanthropic leaders and foundations play a significant role fostering vibrant communities across our country. The Council supports this role and regularly brings foundation leaders together to learn and share from each other.

How do the Sustainable Development Goals relate to domestic challenges in the U.S.?

There are significant challenges facing American communities today, including growing domestic inequality and increased poverty. In Arkansas, members of the philanthropic community work in a variety of innovative and collaborative ways to improve quality of life and create sustainable local communities. 

How do the Sustainable Development Goals relate to domestic challenges in the U.S.? 

There are significant challenges facing American communities today, including growing inequality, quality education, access to healthcare, and climate action. In the Bay Area, members of the philanthropic community work in a variety of innovative and collaborative ways to improve quality of life and create sustainable local communities.

In this week's Washington Snapshot:

Many foundation staff remain mystified (and enamored) with mission investing and the promise it holds for leveraging foundation resources to support their missions. However, it is clear that many foundations do not fully understand the full complement of mission investing strategies and how to implement them effectively.

This white paper provides a review of critical governance issues that foundations must consider to remain in compliance with prevailing and emerging laws and regulations. Readers can expect content focused on Trustee fiduciary responsibilities as relates to duties of care, loyalty, and responsibility.

This white paper outlines best practices with proven results that foundations can use to find and create a diverse and inclusive staff and investment advisory team. Readers will learn how to make the business case for more diverse and equitable strategies and link success in this area with investment results.

Sherry Magill PhD, Chair of the Board of Directors

I am deeply saddened to learn of the death of Rick Cohen. He and I first met in the mid 1990s when he served at national LISC and we were attempting to develop a local LISC chapter in northeast Florida. Over the years, we met annually at the Council's conference, sometimes sharing a drink or coffee and a conversation, sometimes stopping casually in a common area as we did recently  in San Francisco.