Belo Foundation: Grants for Journalism

OVERVIEW: This funder has supported journalism at the college level for decades. Grant requests are typically accepted throughout the year, and communication is encouraged with the executive director.  

FUNDING AREAS: College-level journalism, newspapers

IP TAKE: Contact the foundation before going through the trouble of submitting a formal grant request to make sure that it’s still accepting journalism requests when you’re ready to apply. There’s been a big shift towards funding for urban parks, but journalism support may still be possible.  

PROFILE: The Belo Foundation was established in 1952 and originally known as the G.B. Dealey Foundation. Dealey was the founder and majority owner of The Dallas Morning News and part of the A.H. Belo Corporation. This corporation is a “leading local news and information publishing company with commercial printing, distribution and direct mail capabilities, as well as businesses with expertise in emerging media and digital marketing.” The foundation took on its current name, Belo Foundation, in 2000. All told, this funder has given out over $40 million in grants.

This foundation has had two areas of interest in recent years: journalism and urban parks. Support for parks centers on Dallas, Texas. The foundation has indicated that it plans to fully devote itself to Dallas parks in the future and to eventually cease giving through its journalism program. But for now, the Belo Foundation’s website suggests that journalism is still on its grantmaking radar. One example of Belo’s journalism grants was the $1.5 million award to The University of Texas at Austin to create the Dallas Morning News Journalism Innovation Endowment.

Other major gifts went to the University of Texas at Austin College of Communication to establish the Belo Center for New Media and to the Division of Journalism at Southern Methodist University to help develop an applied journalism program. Since the A.H. Belo Corporation was founded on the newspaper business, newspaper-related grants have been awarded.

In the past, the Belo Foundation trustees have met twice per year. However, grant requests are accepted year-around and processed as received. Expect this review process to take several months. Grants are typically few in number per year, but often significant in size.

General questions can be directed to the two-person staff at 214-977-8267. Amy M. Meadows serves as the vice president and executive director, and Jan Tallichet is the office manager and senior executive assistant. You can also email Ms. Meadows at ameadows@ahbelo.com to discuss your project idea before submitting a formal inquiry—and to confirm if the foundation is still accepting journalism inquiries when you are ready to apply.

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