Baltimore Community Foundation
|Type||Non-Profit Community Foundation|
|Greater Baltimore, Maryland|
|Method||Donations and Grants|
Raymond L. Bank
|Member of Council on Foundations & Maryland Association of Nonprofit Organizations|
The Baltimore Community Foundation (BCF) is a private community foundation created by the community of Baltimore to serve the current and future needs of the Baltimore region. Representing the common interests of a diverse pool of donors, BCF deploys grants, initiatives and advocacy to address issues facing the region today, while building a civic endowment to address the needs of future generations.
Recognized as one of the country’s most civically engaged community foundations, BCF’s role as advocate was highlighted in FSG Social Impact Advisors’ report, Raising Money While Raising Hell.
BCF also offers donors customized support for their individual philanthropic goals, expert assistance in learning more about the causes they care about, and the opportunity to join others with similar interests to learn and give together.
The Baltimore Community Foundation distributed $24 million in 2012 to hundreds of nonprofit organizations in the Baltimore region and beyond. BCF comprises more than 600 different charitable funds created by a diverse group of individuals, families and corporations.
BCF in the community
Community foundations are designed to meet the changing needs of their local communities. BCF currently focuses its discretionary resources on education and neighborhoods.
A number of key initiatives housed at BCF support its interlocking goals for education and neighborhoods.
- Healthy Neighborhoods helps strong but undervalued Baltimore neighborhoods increase home values, market their communities, create high standards for property improvements, and forge strong connections among neighbors.
- Neighborhood Sustainability is an umbrella for several projects including Cleaner, Greener Baltimore and the Baltimore Neighborhood Energy Challenge.
- Middle Grades Partnership offers academically promising Baltimore middle school students the opportunity to excel in the city's most challenging high schools by providing them with comprehensive summer and after-school learning opportunities.
- Central Maryland Transportation Alliance is a coalition of Greater Baltimore’s business, environmental and community leaders dedicated to improving travel efficiency in Central Maryland.
In 1972, leaders of Baltimore’s five major banks of that time joined together to establish the Community Foundation of the Greater Baltimore Area. Inspired by the success of the nation’s first community foundation in Cleveland, Ohio, and a rapidly growing network of community foundations nationwide, co-founder Robert Levi of Mercantile-Safe Deposit and Trust, who would become the fledgling organization’s first chairman, felt strongly that Baltimore needed “a philanthropic organization that was a gathering of all people—no color line, no religious affiliation, no special cause.”
BCF is one of a growing number of community foundations across the U.S. and the world. The Council on Foundations provides a community foundation locator map as well as information and statistics about one of the fastest growing sectors in philanthropy.
BCF is governed by a 31-member board of trustees, selected to represent diverse community interests. The foundation’s staff includes professionals in community investment, donor services, development, finance and administration, and communications.
- Kania, John, et al. Raising Money While Raising Hell. FSG Social Impact Advisors, Fall 2009, p. 2-3. 
- Baltimore Community Foundation About Us
- Healthy Neighborhoods website
- Baltimore Neighborhood Energy Challenge website
- Middle Grades Partnership website
- Levi, Robert H. Interview with Suzanne Wolff. 28 February 1994.
- Council on Foundations Community Foundation Locator Map
- Baltimore Community Foundation Board of Trustees
- Baltimore Community Foundation Staff