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.


As the end of 2015 nears and Congress gears up to take action before the session ends, the philanthropic sector is coming together to make our voice heard.

Partner Opportunities

Join us as a Partner at the 2016 Annual Conference

The philanthropic community will come together at the 2016 Annual Conference to address some of today's toughest challenges. The Council on Foundations' Annual Conference brings together global leaders from across philanthropy to develop the ideas and strategies that will shape the future.

The Council on Foundations maintains a no-solicitation policy covering all of its conferences, meetings, webinars and other events. In order to provide a distraction-free environment for our members and other attendees, we do not allow solicitation of any kind during any event, including asking for business, soliciting fund management services, distributing grant proposals, or requesting grant funding. Additionally, Council members expect that participation in Council events will not result in future solicitations unless the member specifically invites future contact.

Preconference Programming

Separate registration is required for all of these events. Space is limited. Register now!

Online Registration

To make the online registration process as fast and simple as possible, you must have an account with the Council. Once you log in, the online registration system will auto-fill your contact information and assign the correct pricing for the event.

Yes! I have a Council login.

Hotel & Travel

All conference sessions and activities will take place at The Washington Hilton unless otherwise noted.

The Washington Hilton

1919 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 483-3000


The Public Policy and Legal Affairs team at the Council diligently follows and consistently engages on regulatory matters that impact the nonprofit and philanthropic sector. See below for comments and letters the Council has submitted on behalf of our members and the field to strengthen philanthropy.

Summit Partners

The Council would like to thank all of our partners for their support of the 2015 Endowments and Financial Services Summit.

Education Partner

TIAA-CREF Institute

The Council actively asserts its leadership role in the global policy space to ensure a positive regulatory environment for global philanthropy. To do that, the Council develops substantive policy positions on behalf of its members and submits regulatory comments and letters to U.S. policymakers, foreign governments and intergovernmental bodies, and advocates before domestic and international bodies that set policies that impact cross-border philanthropy.