Public Foundations

Public foundations are grantmaking public charities that gain their funds from a variety of sources, which may include foundations, individuals, corporations, or public entities. Public foundations may engage in fundraising, and may seek broad public financial support. They may or may not have endowments. There is no legal definition of a public foundation, but most dedicate a significant portion of their annual budgets to grantmaking. Most community foundations are also grantmaking public charities.

Since public foundations may be defined in different ways, and there is no official IRS or legal definition of public foundations, it is difficult to arrive at statistics that are fully representative of the field.

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

In this Week’s Edition of Snapshot…

  • Tax Reform Update: House Republicans face growing opposition to border adjustability
  • Charitable Giving Coalition Spends Day Fighting for the Charitable Deduction on Capitol Hill
  • IRS makes 1023-EZ data available online
  • In the States: State budgets (in brief), and States consider contracting reform commissions

Council President and CEO Vikki Spruill sat down with Philanthropy Hour’s Greg Cherry for an intimate conversation about the impact and value of American philanthropy and the Council on Foundations' role in advancing the common good.

Hear what Vikki considers to be trending in the field, what motivates giving, and some of the exciting work the Council is doing around impact investing and endowments — just stream the 40-minute podcast now.

In this Week’s Edition of Snapshot…

  • Tax Reform Update: Mnuchin confirmed as Treasury Secretary, Bishop names to Ways & Means, Trump Administration working on a tax overhaul plan, Congress aims to keep tax reform train on track
  • IRS seeks to understand how the regulatory ban will impact its work
  • Council Hosts Collaborative Meeting with Federal Agencies and Philanthropic Stakeholders
  • U.S. nonprofits working abroad face financial difficulties, according to a new study

Over the past several months, Council staff have held conversations with foundation leaders who are grappling with how to understand philanthropy’s role as the new Administration challenges the way our country has traditionally operated. The pace with which significant changes are proposed and executed is making it difficult for even the best strategic jugglers to know how, if, or when to react. Most will admit that these are unusual times. Some describe what’s happening as a shock to the system, sending waves of confusion through organizations and around the globe.

In this Week’s Edition of Snapshot…

  • Tax Reform Update: Council staff meets with Chairman Brady, there is a new member of Ways and Means, and tax bills are not in short supply
  • The Council sends a letter to Congress about the “Johnson Amendment”
  • A number of the President’s Cabinet Nominees have been confirmed
  • The United Nations faces a possibility of decreased funding from the U.S.
  • In the States: State-Level Opposition to Attacks on Foundation and Nonprofit Nonpartisanship
Basic Rights and Rules for Foundations working with Non-US Citizens

Disclaimer: The information in this message and any attachments is being provided for informational purposes only and not as part of an attorney-client relationship. The information is not a substitute for expert legal, tax,or other professional advice tailored to your specific circumstances and may not be relied upon to avoid any penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code.

Last Updated: March 17, 2017

Evaluation and philanthropic learning are essential to driving social change. Here are five trends to look out for in 2017 – and likely beyond:

In this Week’s Edition of Snapshot…

February marks the observance of National African American History Month, a commemoration with origins dating back to 1926 when Dr. Carter G. Woodson instituted a week-long celebration to raise awareness of African Americans’ contributions to history. 50 years later, as part of the United States Bicentennial, the week became a month, and today February is celebrated as National African American History Month in the United States and Black History Month in Canada.

Last October, I received an email about an HR nonprofit diversity conference in San Francisco. I forwarded the email to our HR director. I wondered what cool organization had sponsored this event? While surfing around the website of that cool organization, CoF, I spotted the page for the Career Pathways program. My heart beat a little faster. As a founding member of my foundation’s diversity committee and someone who spends a great deal of time brainstorming ways to develop a culture of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), I was doubled over with excitement.