Case Studies

A Committment to Place: the Springs Close Foundation

Posted on August 15, 2010 by National Center for Family Philanthropy

The Springs Close Foundation is among the largest family foundations in South Carolina, and one of the oldest in the South. Assets at the end of 2009 were approximately $38 million, and over the past seven decades the foundation has invested nearly $100 million in the state – primarily in a rural three-county region known as the “Olde English District” or… Read More
Case Studies

The Highland Street Foundation

Posted on October 11, 2009 by Susan Crites Price

Summer’s over, but for many Massachusetts families, the memories linger on. That’s because from July 3 to September 4, Boston’s Highland Street Foundation sponsored Free Fun Fridays at each of 10 museums and other attractions across the state. Thousands of children and families enjoyed a free experience that some might not otherwise be able to afford, and the 10 institutions… Read More
Case Studies

The Geraldine and Howard Polinger Family Foundation

Posted on August 11, 2009 by Rebecca Zimmerman

One Foundation’s Plan for Embracing the Next Generation Lorre Polinger and her siblings are facing a common challenge in family foundations or funds: how to engage their combined nine children in the family’s philanthropy. Founded in 1968 by their parents, Geraldine and the late Howard Polinger, the Polinger Family Foundation is currently governed by five trustees: Geraldine and her four… Read More
Case Studies

Finding and Fighting the Causes of Homelessness: the Melville Charitable Trust

Posted on June 11, 2009 by Jason Born

In 1990, a family trust in Connecticut decided to pursue an audacious goal: to end homelessness in America. The board thoroughly studied the issue, and eventually committed themselves to an equally bold strategy – creating a national movement. The Melville Charitable Trust’s considerable impact since then was recognized recently when its long-time executive director, Robert Hohler, received the Council on… Read More
Case Studies

How to Close a Foundation: the Pottruck Family Experience

Posted on April 11, 2009 by Susan Crites Price

With a tough economy comes tough decisions. That was true for the Pottruck Family Foundation board, which dissolved the foundation effective Jan. 30, 2009. As their assets shrank in the declining markets of 2008, the family decided that by shifting their philanthropy to a donor-advised fund, they could still direct grants without spending money on overhead, including a staff and… Read More
Case Studies

The William J. and Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation

Posted on January 17, 2009 by Susan Crites Price

Lessons from One Family’s Transition from Founder to Nonfamily Director When Bill O’Neill Jr., president of the William J. and Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation in Cleveland, decided to step aside from being “chief cook and bottle washer for 20 years,” the family faced a common dilemma: how to shift the foundation’s leadership to a successor and who it would be… Read More
Case Studies

Case Study: Tracy Family Foundation

Posted on October 15, 2008 by National Center for Family Philanthropy

When the Tracy Family Foundation (TFF) set out to determine its strategic vision for the next five years, the Mount Sterling, Illinois family foundation included goals for Brown County, the surrounding region in western Illinois served by the foundation, and the Tracy family itself. The plan’s goals for Brown County and the region touch on Catholic school enrollment, nonprofit capacity… Read More
Case Studies

Case Study: The Tow Foundation

Posted on September 18, 2008

When Leonard and Claire Tow created the Tow Foundation in 1988, it was like many other family foundations that base their grantmaking programs on the interests of the trustees. But by the late 1990s that had changed. Seeking funding gaps in their home states, the trustees began to focus collectively in an area about which no family members were particularly… Read More

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