Our Grantmaking Priorities

Driven by the goal of improving lives by helping and educating people, particularly in underserved communities, the Trust continues to focus its grants in the areas of higher education, birth through grade 12 schooling, arts and culture and historic preservation, with a developing concentration on rural “Whole Community Health” at the intersection of the pivotal and universal needs for good health, good education, good housing and good jobs. Starting with the memorable mandate in William R. Kenan Jr.’s Will, “Education is the most cherished gift an individual can receive…,” the Trustees believe that that education is only one of the building blocks leading to enabling disadvantaged children and families to achieve the promising future to which all aspire.

The Trust’s grantmaking is generally centered in the four states of Florida, New York, North Carolina, and Virginia.

In carrying out their responsibilities, the Trustees will give preference to: 

  1. Programs designed holistically, as described above, to meet the needs of underserved communities.
  2. Programs which are sound, seminal efforts, fundamentally improving educational and economic opportunities.
  3. Programs with new or unique aspects.
  4. Programs which actively seek to leverage the Trust’s contribution by encouraging others to participate in the contribution of human and financial resources to the common end. 
  5. Programs which promote diversity and inclusion. 

The Trustees embrace new opportunities to facilitate and encourage systemic change. They also welcome higher levels of engagement with the Trust’s grant partners.

Higher Education


Whole Community Health

Arts & Culture

Historic Preservation

The Trust does not accept unsolicited proposals