Working with Foundations

Tips for Scheduling Foundation Visits

A Report on Family Foundation Philanthropy (PDF)

Foundation partners are critical to advancing the UW’s mission. We work with foundations to pursue shared commitments to discovery, innovation, and impact. In particular, our relationships with foundations enable faculty to pursue creative ideas in their scholarship and in the classroom and foster an entrepreneurial climate at UW with far-reaching benefits for society.

First established in the early 20th century when civic-minded industrial leaders leveraged their wealth to improve society and in an effort to move from charity to change, foundations now number more than 70,000, and include:

  • independent foundations, including family foundations
  • community foundations
  • corporate foundations
  • operating foundations

Tips for partnering with foundations:

  • Visit the foundation’s web site —determine if their vision and giving priorities are a strong match for your program: how does your opportunity/expertise address their vision?
  • Study the Advance database—review giving and contact history to learn as much as you can about areas of past and current involvement. (Be sure to use “Reports”/”Reports”/”UW Giving Profile Report” from the top toolbar to see the history of grants to UW from the foundation not captured on the entity profile or gift summary screens.)
  • Talk with the RM for the foundation to discuss your interest in approaching the foundation. Obtain as much background information as possible about UW’s relationship with the foundation and any changes in the foundation’s agenda before making your approach.
  • If a limited submission policy applies, contact the UW relationship manager (RM) for the foundation to learn how UW coordinates proposals.
  • Talk with faculty in your department who may have a relationship with the foundation.
  • Need more information? Contact Advancement Research and Relationship Management.
  • Follow the foundation’s directions for making contact/inquiries. If you will submit a proposal, make sure the gift expectancy is recorded on Advance.
  • To learn more about developing productive relationships and effective proposals, visit Templates, Tools, & Samples.

Thank you for helping to forge robust relationships with UW’s foundation partners that advance knowledge and contribute to our world. Please contact the Office of Corporate & Foundation Relations for assistance or if you have questions.