Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund

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The Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund is a private foundation established in 1953 by Evelyn D. Haas and Walter A. Haas Jr. As of 2011, the Fund has awarded nearly $390 million in grants.

Based in San Francisco, California, the Haas Fund supports nonprofit organizations and initiatives in five main program areas: Immigrant Rights and Integration; Gay and Lesbian Rights; Education Opportunities; Nonprofit Leadership; and Community Partnerships and Initiatives.

The foundation is known in the San Francisco Bay Area for its support for institutions such as UC Berkeley and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art,[1] and for its involvement in local efforts such as the San Francisco Chronicle Season of Sharing Fund and the transformation of Crissy Field from a military base to an urban national park.[2]


Haas's great-great-uncle Levi Strauss, an immigrant from Bavaria, arrived in San Francisco in 1853 and started a dry-goods house that grew into a prosperous business and eventually became Levi Strauss & Co. A donor to organizations serving children and the poor, as well as UC Berkeley, Strauss was credited in a 1902 obituary for his "numberless un-ostentatious acts of charity in which neither race nor creed were recognized."[3]

Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. started the Haas Fund while Walter was working as an executive at Levi Strauss & Co. In its mission statement, the Fund describes its goal "to fulfill (its) founders' vision of a just and caring society where all people are able to live, work and raise their families with dignity."[4]

Evelyn and Walter's three children are trustees of the Fund's Board: Walter J. Haas is Chair, Robert D. Haas is Treasurer, and Betsy Haas Eisenhardt is Secretary.


  1. ^ Guthrie, Julian (1 July 2007). "THE HAAS LEGACY How one family's generosity and commitment to civic life are transforming the Bay Area". SF Gate. Retrieved 30 April 2011. 
  2. ^ "Crissy Field". Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy website. Retrieved 30 April 2011. 
  3. ^ "Fund History". Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund website. Retrieved 30 April 2011. 
  4. ^ "Mission Statement". Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund website.