Union Pacific Foundation Supports Public Media and More

Union Pacific Foundation is the philanthropic offspring of Union Pacific Corporation and Union Pacific Railroad. Through the "Community and Civic" category of its Community-Based Grant Program, it gives a healthy amount each year to public media broadcast organizations that are working in both a journalistic and eduational realm.

Recent examples include:

  • $15,000 to Idaho Public Television (Boise, ID);
  • $10,000 to Marfa Public Radio (Marfa, TX);
  • $10,000 to Arizona Capitol Broadcast Education Foundation (Gilbert, AZ);
  • $10,000 to Arkanasas Educational Telecommunications Network (Conway, AR);
  • $7,500 to the Northern California Education Televeision Association (Redding, CA);
  • $7,500 to Channel 5 Public Broadcasting (Reno, NV);
  • $6,500 to Capital Public Radio (Sacramento, CA);
  • $5,000 to South Texas Public Broadcasting (Corpus Christi, TX);
  • $5,000 to Permian Basin Public Telecommunications (Midland, TX);
  • $2,500 to the Pacifica Foundation (Houston, TX).

Union Pacific Foundation also recently gave $5,000 to the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (New Orleans, LA), which includes "radio documentaries" as a primary programming focus.

If you're a public media broadcast organization in one of Union Pacific Foundation's communities of focus (see below), it's obvious that this is a good fit for your organization. If you're a journalistic enterprise outside of that pocket, there is still an opportunity for you, as long as you'e a 501(c)(3). Keep in mind that for all of its philanthropy, Union Pacific Foundation seeks to promote “program effectiveness,” and therefore particularly likes its grants to go capacity building, which it describes as “helping new or existing programs reach more people or reach them effectively.”

This definition and prioritization opens up a lot of opportunity for a media organization or journalistic enterprise seeking support— but be sure to emphasize the community you'll serve, because Union Pacific Foundation really is about supporting communities, specifically those that make up the 56 large regions along their railroad lines.