Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Foundation

OVERVIEW: This family funder supports education, health, and human rights/social justice in New York City, as well as in Washington, D.C., and Baltimore. The other Blaustein philanthropies are focused more exclusively on Baltimore.

FUNDING AREAS: Educational opportunity, health, human rights, social justice

IP TAKE: MKJBF has been heavily involved with public school reform and children’s advocacy in New York City. Make your pitch to this funder about NYC kids.

PROFILE: The Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Foundation (MKJBF) is part of the Blaustein Philanthropic Group, which is made up of four family foundations. Louis Blaustein was the family patriarch who immigrated from Lithuania to the U.S. and founded the American Oil Company (Amoco) with his son, Jacob, in 1910. The Blaustein family is represented by American Trading and Production Corporation (Atapco), Lord Baltimore Capital Corporation, and Rosemore Inc. today.

This particular Blaustein Foundation supports the program areas of educational opportunity, health, and human rights/social justice in New York City, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C. Education grants go to improve teacher quality, summer learning programs, and policies that make schools more inclusive. MKJBF has been actively involved with the New York City-based Donors’ Education Collaborative, which is overseen by the New York Community Trust and includes other local donors passionate about school reform in New York City public schools.

Health grants seek to strengthen primary care, with grants typically going to programs for underserved children and youth. The funder has supported the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare and provided multiyear nursing scholarships. Human rights and social justice grants work for equal justice and fair treatment of immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. The funder looks both nationally and internationally to support these causes and also responds to natural disasters and urgent humanitarian needs. MKJBF has supported the Fund for New Citizens, a collaborative group that responds to the needs of refugees and immigrants in New York City.

The foundation recently reviewed and revised its funding priorities, during which only requests from current grantees were considered. Check the foundation website for the up-to-date guidelines. New York-based grantees include Big Mouth Productions in Brooklyn, Comprehensive Development, Advocates for Children of New York, LitWorld, and Peer Health Exchange. A list of grantees is here.

The total amount of grants paid in a recent year was just over $3 million. The current 990 form can be viewed here. Collectively, the Blaustein Philanthropic Group has awarded over $13 million dollars through more than 450 grants. In general, the foundations provide only a limited number of capital grants, mostly to organizations they have a prior connection to.

The MKJBF foundation president is Jeanne P. Blaustein, the executive director is Betsy F. Ringel, the senior program officer is Tanya C. Herbick, and the program associate is Michael J. Arnst. For general questions, reach out to the staff at info@blaufund.org.

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