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.

The Council on Foundations today, announced the 24 participants selected for the 2020 Career Pathways cohort, a leadership development program designed to increase the number of diverse candidates in the philanthropic leadership pipeline.

The Council on Foundations today announced the appointment of three philanthropic leaders to its Board of Directors – Brennan Gould, Mae Hong and Peter Laugharn.

Hosted by Worldwide Initiatives for Grantmaker Support (WINGS), the webinar will include representatives from the Spanish Association of Foundations, the Council on Foundations and the European Foundation Centre (EFC) to talk about what goes on behind the scenes in the successful strategies to promote an enabling environment for civil society and philanthropy to thrive. 

The webinar will include:

As 2019 comes to a close, I’m reflecting on my first year at the Council on Foundations. I’m proud of the strides we’ve made in forging strong relationships across the sector, moving our policy agenda forward, supporting the professional growth of members and reimagining both our membership model and our vision for the future of the Council.

When I look back on the places, conversations and people that defined this year, there are a few key themes that stand out.

I’ve just finished a year-long program that aims to bring more diverse senior leadership to the philanthropic sector. My time with Council on Foundations’ Career Pathways program was transformative and will, no doubt, have an impact on my thinking and career trajectory in ways that I can’t yet even imagine. So what’s the problem?

The Council on Foundations and the Daniel and Barbara Chapman Trust today announced Opportunity Fund as the recipient of the 2019 Chapman Prize.

Current as of September 2019 | Download print version (PDF)

This describes the legal framework of nonprofit organizations (also known as non-governmental organizations or NGOs) in Ethiopia, along with translations of legislative provisions relevant for a foundation or advisor undertaking an equivalency determination of a foreign grantee under IRS Revenue Procedure 92-94.

In 2018, the Council on Foundations introduced a series of summits on inclusive economic prosperity. These summits were designed to help foundation leaders better understand the leading role that philanthropy can play in developing inclusive economic prosperity outcomes in local economies.

This report provides salary, benefits, and diversity data for full-time staff at U.S. foundations to aid in budget planning and personnel practice benchmarking. Information is presented by grantmaker type, foundation type, asset size, and geographic location.

Contents include: