Foundation Transitions

Guidance and Discussion Points for Weathering Change

Just like the individuals and families who establish them, foundations change with the passage of time. And because nearly 90% of all foundations are set up with the intent to exist in perpetuity, their success depends on their ability to prepare for and manage change. This booklet provides guidance for the necessary thought work that leads to foundation preparedness.

There is no one-size-fits-all prescription for successfully weathering a foundation transition. Not only is each foundation unique, but each foundation is constantly evolving, gaining complexity over time. As new members and new generations seek to put their own stamp on everything from grantmaking to governance, the foundation may find itself struggling. The challenge isn’t merely a transition, but also the internal stress of balancing the energy and engagement of new blood with the experience and traditions of its senior members.

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