Maggie Morth
Communications Manager
The Foundation Center
(212) 807-2415


New York, NY -- July 9, 2007. Washington, DC, area foundations had close to $12 billion in assets and were responsible for almost $779 million in grants in 2005, according to Key Facts on Washington, DC, Area Foundations, a new report from the Foundation Center's regional center in Washington, DC. The report is the first ever to exclusively highlight the Center's most current data on the size and giving activities of this segment of the nation's grantmaking foundations. It presents a snapshot of activity by 1,605 independent, corporate, community, and operating foundations in 2005.

"We are delighted to present this inaugural report on foundations in the Washington, DC, area," said Anita H. Plotinsky, director of the Center's DC office. "We hope that it will strengthen public understanding of the size, scope, and activities of philanthropic institutions located in and around the nation's capital."

Among the key findings:

  • Foundation assets rose significantly faster in the Washington, DC, area than in the United States overall between 2000 and 2005.
  • Foundations in the Washington, DC, area prioritized giving for education and human services in 2005 and also targeted a larger share of their funding than U.S. foundations overall for the economically disadvantaged.
  • Close to 40 percent of foundations in the area held less than $250,000 in assets.

The report defines the Washington, DC, area as the District of Columbia, seven neighboring counties in Maryland, and six counties and four cities in Virginia. It can be downloaded at no charge from the Gain Knowledge area of the Foundation Center's web site. Key Facts on Washington, DC, Area Foundations was produced with support from the Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation.

Coinciding with this report, the Foundation Center and Washington Grantmakers have released the latest edition of the Guide to Greater Washington, DC Grantmakers on CD-ROM, a research tool with more than 3,000 grantmaker entries, nearly 30,000 grants awarded to area nonprofits, and a searchable index of nearly 17,000 trustees, officers, and donor names.

About the Foundation Center
Established in 1956, and today supported by more than 600 foundations, the Foundation Center is the nation's leading authority on philanthropy, connecting nonprofits and the grantmakers supporting them to tools they can use and information they can trust. The Center maintains the most comprehensive database on U.S. grantmakers and their grants -- a robust, accessible knowledge bank for the sector. It also operates research, education, and training programs designed to advance philanthropy at every level. The Center's web site receives more than 47,000 visits each day, and thousands of people gain access to free resources in its five regional library/learning centers and its national network of more than 325 Cooperating Collections. For more information, please visit or call (212) 620-4230.

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