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President's Priority Foundations


Patricia Austin, Associate Vice President, Head of Foundation and Corporate Relations
Phone: 215.908.5395

Bernadette McNulty, Executive Director, Foundation and Corporate Relations Head of Health Sciences
Phone: 215.255.7388

Since the RFPs below are from foundations on President Fry’s Priority Foundations list, please notify the IA-FCR contacts above if you decide to apply for any of these opportunities. The President requires that any inquiry/application to these foundations be coordinated through IA-FCR.

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

Deadline: For most programs, an initial LOI is required and proposals are accepted by invitation only.

Funding: No set limit

Purpose: STEM Higher Education: Leadership Diversity Program: Supports college and university efforts to promote the effective professional development of women and minority faculty for positions of academic leadership. Projects should have a national focus that promotes the education or advancement of women or other underrepresented minorities in mathematics, the natural sciences and/or engineering.

Digital Information Technology -- Data and Computational Research, Universal Access to Knowledge, and Economics of Information Goods: To better our understanding of the relationship between technology, information, and society, primarily through research on and the development of digital information technology for the conduct of scholarly research and public engagement with knowledge.

History of Science and Technology: The History of Science and Technology program is currently undergoing evaluation to identify possible new directions and funding priorities. Previously supported efforts to deploy new technologies to create, access and preserve the historical record of recent major technical and scientific events using the World Wide Web.

Eligibility: See website link.


Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Deadline: The Foundations Board of Trustees considers grants recommended by program staff at quarterly meetings occurring in March, June, September, and December of each year. Grantees are encouraged to submit draft proposals to program staff at least three and a half months prior to the Board meeting. Unsolicited proposals are rarely funded.

Funding: Not specified.


  • Higher Education and Scholarship (Research Universities and Scholarship in the Humanities, Liberal Arts Colleges Programs, Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and Diversity Initiatives, Special International Emphasis: South Africa)
  • Scholarly Communications and Information Technology
  • Art History, Conservation and Museums
  • Performing Arts

Eligibility: Prospective grantees should consult the Foundation's program summaries, annual report essays and grant listings in order to see the substantive areas of interest and emphasis. The Foundation rarely makes grants that fall outside its area of emphasis.


Annie E. Casey Foundation, Inc.

Deadline: By invitation only. Foundation does not seek, nor often fund, unsolicited grant applications.

Funding: No set limit

Purpose: The Foundation focuses on providing direct services, reforming public systems, providing strategic consulting, transforming neighborhoods, strengthening families, building economic success, using data and evaluation, and ensuring racial and ethnic equity. Key program areas include: Child Welfare/Permanence, Community Change, Economic Security, Education, and Juvenile Justice.

Eligibility: In general, the grant making of the Annie E. Casey Foundation is limited to initiatives in the United States that have significant potential to demonstrate innovative policy, service delivery, and community supports for disadvantaged children and families.


Arthur Vining Davis


Barra Foundation

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Global Health Initiative

Deadline:Accepted on a continuous basis throughout the year.

Funding:Varies according to program.

Purpose: The Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. Accepts LOIs on the following subjects: Discovery & Translational Sciences; Enteric & Diarrheal Diseases; HIV; Malaria; Neglected Infectious Diseases; Pneumonia; Tuberculosis.

Eligibility: No grants to individuals; must be through a nonprofit institution.


The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Various Programs

Deadline:LOIs may be submitted throughout the year. Full proposals must be submitted at least four months before the start of the proposed grant period.


Purpose: Foundation funding focuses on four major grant programs: Civil Society: Strengthening philanthropy and the nonprofit sector as vital vehicles for increasing civic engagement and improving communities and societies. Environment: Supporting the efforts of an engaged citizenry working to create accountable and responsive institutions, sound public policies, and appropriate models of development that protect the diversity and integrity of selected ecosystems in North America and around the world. Pathways Out of Poverty: Identifying, testing and helping sustain pathways out of poverty for low-income people and communities. In addition to these four programs, Mott also funds Exploratory and Special Projects [XSP]. XSP grants support unusual or unique opportunities to address significant national and international problems. These proposals are by invitation only.

Eligibility: See website link.


Connelly Foundation


Funding:Not specified

Purpose: To achieve its mission to foster learning and improve the quality of life, Connelly Foundation provides grants toward costs associated with programs, direct services, general operations and capital projects to non-profit organizations and institutions working in the following fields: Education; Health and Human Services; and Arts, Culture, and Civic Enterprise.

Eligibility: Applicants are limited to one grant in a twelve month period.


Exelon Foundation

Deadline: LOI accepted on a rolling basis and reviewed quarterly.

Funding: Not specified.

Purpose: Giving in service area of Exelon and operating companies with three focus areas: 

  1. Environment and Conservation
  2. Innovative Math and Sciences Education
  3. Diversity and Tolerance

Eligibility: Not specified.


Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

Ford Foundation

Deadline: Accepted on a continuous basis throughout the year.

Funding:Varies according to program.

Purpose: The Foundation's goals are to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. Types of grants include project planning and support; general support; and endowments.

Eligibility: See link.


Henry Luce Foundation, Various Program

Deadline:LOI is required for most programs with proposals accepted by invitation only. Check program webpages for details.

Purpose: American Art – Responsive Grants: To support projects that address the prevailing needs of the American art field and are crucial to its development. For 2014, the responsive grants category will predominantly focus on digitization projects and reinstallations of American Art collections. Asia Program – Asia Responsive Grants and Special Initiatives: To foster cultural and intellectual exchange between the United States and the countries of East and Southeast Asia and to create scholarly and public resources for improved understanding of Asia in the United States. Asia Responsive Grants are periodically approved by the Foundation's board. Higher Education: The creation of new intellectual resources at colleges and universities is a central theme for much of the Foundation’s work. Some grants have addressed the Foundation’s commitment to increase America’s capacity for international understanding, others have addressed the interests and history of the Foundation and the Luce family, and a few others have been made to organizations seeking to increase support for women in science and engineering. Public Policy: Grants in this area often reflect the interests of the founder, Henry R. Luce, who actively encouraged the development of public leadership. Religion & International Affairs: The initiative invites proposals from academic as well as policy or media institutions that work to deepen interdisciplinary understanding of the role of religion in world affairs, and to link this knowledge to a range of policy issues, communities, and wider publics.

Eligibility: See website link.


Deadline:Deadlines vary. FCR will monitor the foundation for open RFPs. Most HHMI grants are awarded through competitions that have a formal invitation and review process. Unsolicited proposals are not encouraged.

Funding:Varies according to program.

Purpose: HHMI’s chartered purpose is the promotion of human knowledge within the field of basic sciences and the effective application thereof for the benefit of humanity. This mission is carried out in laboratories and classrooms at private and public institutions across the United States. HHMI's main focus areas are: Biomedical Research: Current programs include HHMI Investigator (see above for RFP), Early Career Scientist (not open at this time), International Programs (for overseas researchers only, not currently accepting applications), and Janelia Farm Research Campus (recruitment for postdoctoral associates is ongoing). Science Education: Awards to research universities, colleges, professors, graduate students; Exceptional Research Opportunities Program (EXROP) for undergraduates; Janelia Undergraduate Scholar Program; National Experiment in Undergraduate Science Education (NEXUS); Medical Research Fellows Program. No current RFPs are open for any of these programs.

Eligibility: varies


Independence Blue Cross Foundation

John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

John Templeton Foundation

Deadline:LOI accepted on a rolling basis.


Kresge Foundation, Community Health Partnerships

Deadline: LOI accepted on a rolling basis.

Funding:Not specified.

Purpose: The foundation invests in a) building a better primary-care safety net and b) innovative approaches to improve community health.

Eligibility: U.S. 501(c)(3) organizations with audited financial statements that are not classified as private foundations.


Lenfest Foundation

Deadline:No deadlines.

Funding:Founders’ grants generally range from $5,000 to $25,000. Others not specified.

Purpose: Founders' Grants: The Lenfest Foundation is not seeking requests from organizations that have not received prior support but will consider letters of inquiry for potential new grants from Philadelphia area qualified public charities that work in the areas of career and technical education, early childhood education and out of school time programs. The Lenfest Ocean Program: An important ongoing legacy initiative with funding commitments that run through 2017 and operated by the Pew Charitable Trusts from its Washington, DC office. Funds scientific research on policy-relevant topics concerning the world’s oceans and communicates the results of supported research to decision makers and other interested audiences. It focuses on the environmental, economic and social impacts of fishing, fisheries management and aquaculture. More information at Place Based Programs: By invitation only. Multi-year grants to a select number of high performing intermediary/catalyst organizations working to impact the welfare of an entire neighborhood or area of Philadelphia. Lenfest Foundation funds will be targeted to specific youth development programs in the areas of career and technical education, early childhood education and out of school time that are part of the overall initiative. Placed based grants will be made by invitation. Core Support: By invitation only. Provides operating support to a select number of high performing multi-service organizations that include significant youth development programs in their work. Initial grants will be for three years with eligibility to renew for an additional two years. Core support grants will be made by invitation. Opportunity Fund: By invitation only. Supports targets of opportunity that are consistent with the overall priority of improving the welfare of disadvantaged youth. These grants will be initiated by the Foundation’s board of directors on a very selective basis.

Eligibility: See website link.


McNeil Family Foundations


Pew Charitable Trusts

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization: Small Grants and Larger Grants

Deadline: Open

Funding: Small grants are for up to $100,000 for one year; Larger Grants are for projects requiring more than $100,000 and taking longer than 12 months

Purpose: Supports research, policy analysis and evaluation projects that provide policy leaders timely information on health care policy, financing and organization issues.

Eligibility: Researchers, as well as practitioners and public and private policy-makers working with researchers, are eligible to submit proposals through their organizations. Only organizations and government entities are eligible to receive funding under this program.


Rockefeller Foundation

Deadline: Online inquiries may be submitted throughout the year.

Funding: No set limit.

Purpose: The Rockefeller Foundation works to achieve its goal of creating meaningful and measurable impact for poor and vulnerable communities through smart globalization. To accomplish this, the Foundation currently is funding a portfolio of work structured around four core issue areas: Advance Health, Revalue Ecosystems, Secure Livelihoods, and Transform Cities.

Eligibility: See website link.


Surdna Foundation

Deadline:The Surdna Foundation, Various Programs

Deadline:LOIs accepted on a rolling basis. Grants at the full proposal stage are approved three times per year: in April, July and December.

Funding:No set limit; general range is between $50,000-$250,000

Purpose: The Surdna Foundation seeks to foster sustainable communities in the United States -- communities guided by principles of social justice and distinguished by healthy environments, strong local economies, and thriving cultures. Sustainable Environments works to overhaul the country’s low performing infrastructure with a new approach that will foster healthier, sustainable, and just communities. Strong Local Economies supports the development of robust and sustainable economies that include a diversity of businesses and access to quality jobs. Surdna works to spur the growth of local businesses, encourage equitable economic development, and improve the quality and availability of jobs for low-income people, communities of color, immigrants, and women. Thriving Cultures believes that communities with robust arts and culture are more cohesive, prosperous and benefit from the rich cultural diversity of their residents. Surdna supports efforts to encourage teens to explore the arts, involve artists in community development projects and foster the growth and success of local artists as economic engines and agents for social change. Capacity and Infrastructure Fund: In addition to the three core programs, Surdna works to support and build the capacity of the nonprofit sector.

Eligibility: See website link.


W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Deadline: Grant applications are accepted throughout the year. Initial LOI is required and can be submitted online.

Funding: Several thousand to several million, depending on organization/project

Purpose: The Kellogg Foundation's program areas include Healthy Kids, Educated Kids, and Secure Families. The Foundation views its mission and goals through the two approaches of civic engagement and racial equity and partners with those who embrace these ideals. Additionally, the Foundation's Mission-Driven Investment Program invests endowment dollars in enterprises that both realize market rates of return and improve the lives of vulnerable children.

Eligibility: To be eligible for support, organizations or institutions, as well as the purpose of the proposed project, must qualify under regulations of the United States Internal Revenue Service.

Website: ‎

W.M. Keck Foundation, Special Projects Program

Deadline: Varies. By invitation only.

Funding: Only one submission per institution per cycle. Historically, grants range from $500,000 to $5 million and are typically $2 million or less.

Purpose: The Research Program seeks to benefit humanity by supporting projects in two specific areas (1) medical research and (2) science and engineering, that are distinctive and novel in their approach, question the prevailing paradigm, or have the potential to break open new territory in their field. Past grants have been awarded to major universities, independent research institutions, and medical schools to support pioneering biological and physical science research and engineering, including the development of promising new technologies, instrumentation or methodologies.

Eligibility: Research universities, medical colleges and major private independent scientific and medical research institutes are eligible.


Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, Translational Partnership Award in Biomedical Engineering

Deadline:by invitation only

Funding:$2.9 million over five years

Purpose: The award funds efforts to commercialize university technologies that save, extend, and improve the lives of patients suffering from any disease or condition, in any size market, in any discipline, in any country around the world. With this award, the Foundation will form a working partnership with the Biomedical Engineering Department to promote translational research. The Translational Research Partner Institutions will work closely with the Foundation to promote, develop and realize the clinical potential of translational research.

Eligibility: Only pre-selected universities are eligible to apply. The Biomedical Engineering department chair is considered PI on the award. *Drexel University already has a Coulter Translational Partnership Award in Biomedical Engineering.


William Penn Foundation

William Randolph Hearst Foundations