Gilbert & Jacki Cisneros Foundation

OVERVIEW: The Gilbert and Jacki Cisneros Foundation works to cultivate a community that supports Latino education, and to identify and support the key factors that lead to Latino student success. It also funds some work benefitting veterans. 

IP TAKE:  This foundation prioritizes Latino student success and education; however, it funds some veterans-related grantmaking. 

PROFILE: The Gilbert and Jacki Cisneros Foundation was formed in 2010. It was founded by Gilbert Cisneros, a former shipping and manufacturing manager for Frito-Lay and his wife Jacki, a broadcast journalist, who won the California Mega Millions Lottery, netting $266 million. The Gilbert and Jacki Cisneros Foundation works to "cultivate a community that supports Latino education, and to identify and support the key factors that lead to Latino student success." As such, it prioritizes Latino student success across its grantmaking and also funds some grantmaking benefitting veterans

The foundation supports Latino student success through two avenues, the Frank Terrazas Scholarship, currently limited to students attending El Rancho High School in the city of Pico Rivera, and the Cisneros Scholars award, which is available only for students enrolled at George Washington University. 

As a proud U.S. Navy veteran, Gil Cisneros also prioritizes veterans through the foundation's grantmaking. 

Gilbert and Jacki initially made donations to their alma maters, The George Washington University and University of Southern California, to endow scholarships for Hispanic students. They also endowed a scholarship with the Navy Supply Corps Foundation. Additionally, they partnered with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the city of Pico Rivera, California to create Generation First Degree Pico Rivera, with the goal of putting a college degree in every Hispanic household in the city. Under Jacki’s leadership, several top-notch university-focused preparation programs have been brought to El Rancho High School, giving over 500 students every year the opportunity to access key college-bound guidance programs. 

Grants range from $375 to $100,000. In a recent fiscal year, the foundation gave away $872,238. Past grantees have included University of Southern California (home to the Cisneros Assignment Desk in Annenberg Hall); Orange Catholic Foundation; George Lopez Foundation; Eva Longoria Foundation; and Campaign for College Opportunity.

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