Supporting Organizations


High impact, high involvement, low hassle.

A Supporting Organization is an excellent alternative to a private foundation - with only a fraction of the administrative responsibilities. You select some of the board members, maintain personal involvement, and support the causes you care about most while enjoying the favorable tax treatment of a public charity. Leave investment management, startup costs, grant administration, and reporting to your community foundation.


Maximum involvement, reduced work.

Ethel and Dave Steen were about to sell their decades-old family business. Over the last couple years, they had discussed using a portion of the proceeds to establish a charitable foundation. "Our community had given us our livelihood, and we want to say 'thank you,'" says Ethel. "But we also want to enjoy our retirement. I was surprised at the time, energy, and money it takes to start and manage a private foundation." The Steens wanted to make a big and positive impact but were not sure that they could consistently identify their community's most pressing needs. After talking to their professional advisor, the Steens decided to establish The Steen Foundation for Giving, a Supporting Organization affiliated with their community foundation. "Our son and granddaughter sit on the board with us, so we get the involvement and togetherness we were looking for," says Dave.