Alicia Patterson Foundation: Grants for Journalism

OVERVIEW: This funder provides one-year and six-month grants to individual working journalists pursuing investigative projects. You must be a U.S. print journalist with at least five years of experience to be eligible.

FUNDING AREAS: Rigorous, probing, spirited, independent and skeptical work that will benefit the public; fostering a community of journalists

IP TAKE: This is a great opportunity for print journalists around the country. Only individuals, not organizations, can apply. Check out the new opportunity for environmental and science writers.

PROFILE: The Alicia Patterson Foundation is based in Washington, D.C., and aims to improve the best traditions of American journalism. The foundation was established in 1965 in Ms. Patterson’s memory. She was the editor and publisher of Newsday for almost 23 years. Interestingly, Patterson was reluctant to enter the field of journalism at first. She became a publisher in 1940 to appease her husband and show her father that she could be a good journalist just like him. Patterson passed away in 1963.

This foundation awards one-year and six-month grants to journalists who are currently working on independent projects and write investigative articles for The APF Reporter, an online magazine published by the foundation. The foundation’s ultimate goal is to boost the quality of print journalism.

An annual competition opens in June each year. Submissions must be postmarked by October 1 and only accepted from print journalists who are U.S. citizens and have at least five years of experience. However, freelancers are welcome to apply as well. Winners are chosen by a panel of judges in the fall, and the awards provide $40,000 for the full year or $20,000 for the half year opportunity. The foundation does not match salaries, and the stipend must cover travel and research costs.

Application tips and FAQ are listed on the foundation’s application instructions page. Learn about current and past fellows here, and read some of the writers’ stories here.

There is also a separate Cissy Patterson fellowship available for environmental or science topics. This opportunity just began in 2016 and honors Alicia Patterson’s aunt, Chrissy, who was a publisher too. No separate application form is needed here, and any environmental or science writers will be automatically considered.

Applications should be mailed to the foundation at 1100 Vermont Avenue, NW, Suite 900, Washington, D.C., 20005. However, inquiries can be directed to 202-393-5995 or Rather than a large staff, this foundation has an executive director, president, chairman emeritus, and other board members. You can also keep up with foundation happenings on its blog.


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