Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation

OVERVIEW: The Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation supports the tri-state area of Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana with grants for education, health, medical research, children’s welfare and competitive sports, arts and culture, civic public affairs, animal welfare and preservation, and environmental and community stewardship.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, health, medical research, children’s welfare and competitive sports, arts and culture, civic public affairs, animal welfare and preservation, environmental and community stewardship

IP TAKE: This is a great Northern Kentucky funder to know for nearly any nonprofit program because it is accessible and collaborative.

PROFILE: Established in 2004, the Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation is an independent philanthropic foundation based in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky. Sule pursued a career in radio and television broadcasting in the mid-1900s, and she was active in charitable endeavors in Northern Kentucky and the Cincinnati area. She passed away in 2010. The foundation’s grantmaking includes education, health, medical research, children’s welfare and competitive sports, arts and culture, civic public affairs, animal welfare and preservation, and environmental and community stewardship.

Across all of these areas, Sule grants benefit children, adults and animals. Past grantees include Fort Mitchell, Kentucky, organizations, including the Madison Avenue Christian Church. The foundation has supported organizations in Kentucky cities including Covington, Wilder, Lexington and Newport. Also, the Sule Foundation is part of a funder collaborative called NYK Funders, which supports nonprofits in Northern Kentucky through competitive grant cycles. The Sule Foundation does not provide general operating funds, support for capital fund campaigns, or funding for individuals.

Foundation grants are typically between $1,000 and $25,000, although it awards some larger grants occasionally, as well. Learn about past grantees on the funder’s annual report page. This foundation focuses on the tri-state areas of Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana. Grants are typically for one-year periods.

The Sule Foundation accepts unsolicited letters of inquiry from local nonprofits and has an online application system. Nonprofits can submit LOIs at any time of the year. Then groups will receive an invitation to apply if the LOI is approved by December 15, March 15, June 15, or September 15. The foundation makes some of its grant cycles by invitation only, and via an open application process during other cycles. Direct general questions to the foundation staff at 513-335-4798 or to the staff members directly by email.

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