Gerald R. Jordan Jr. Foundation: Boston Area Grants

OVERVIEW: Like many philanthropic foundations, the Jordan Foundation was built on the founder's hedge fund success. Jordan awards grants to Massachusetts and Florida-based organizations in the arts, education, health, and social services areas.

FUNDING AREAS: Arts, education, medical care, social services, youth services

IP TAKE: Since the Jordan Foundation doesn't have a website or a staff, the founder's wife and executive director, Darlene, might be your best bet to find out more about the grant application process.

PROFILE: Gerald R. Jordan, Jr. is the kind of guy who goes sailing in the Virgin Islands, reads Tom Clancy novels, and has a mansion that gets tagged on paparazzi sites. But before you write him off as just another rich hedge fund manager, you should take a look at what he's doing for the city of Boston. Jordan started his own foundation in 1996 to donate funds to Massachusetts charities in the standard array of program areas: arts, education, health, and social services. He built up over $30 million in assets from his success in running the Hellman Jordan Management Company Inc..

Jordan got his start at Harvard University, served as a Navy Lieutenant, began an investment career at Putnam Management Company, and then started his own management company. Since Jordan's son has now taken over as President and Senior Portfolio for the hedge fund, he's had more time to focus on his retirement career as a philanthropist.

The Jordan Foundation does not award grants to individuals, but pretty much anything else is fair game. Universities seeking scholarship funds tend to fare well with the foundation, as do cancer research facilities, specialty hospitals, orchestra groups, and museums. Some Jordan Foundation grants around the Boston area have included $2.7 million to Harvard, $637,000 to Massachusetts General Hospital, $100,000 to Fordham University. Many years, Jordan has given over a million dollars to his alma mater, Harvard University, for scholarships and general fundraising.

At the end of a past year, the foundation reported over $32 million in assets and more than $4.5 million in total giving.

Gerald and his wife, Darlene, run the foundation and don't seem to employ any staff. Unfortunately for non-profit organizations, this means that the foundation isn't exactly accessible and you don't have a guiding program officer to reach out to. In an interview with Hedge Fund News, Jordan admitted that he wasn't good at managing people, so he just focused on managing money. Aside from his foundation's grants, Jordan has served on the President's Council of Massachusetts General Hospital, been an overseer of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston, and a trustee of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and the Belmont Hill School.

The foundation doesn't have a website and it doesn't publicize its grant application procedures. Therefore, we are only left to assume that Jordan doesn't accept unsolicited grant proposals. Although Jordan has another residence in Florida these days, he's a Boston kind of guy, so Boston-based organizations may have the best chance at getting noticed. His wife, Darlene has been the foundation's executive director, so she should be your initial contact. Mail correspondence can be directed to the foundation's Boston office located at 125 High Street, Suite 801, Boston, Massachusetts 02110-2704. The phone number to call is 617-261-9800.


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