Albert and Margaret Alkek Foundation

OVERVIEW: The Albert and Margaret Alkek Foundation awards grants in the areas of medicine, education, community, and culture in Texas.

FUNDING AREAS: Medicine, education, community, culture

IP TAKE:  This is a tightly knit family funder that usually sticks to grantees it has a personal affiliation with. The best opportunities for local groups are in building and renovating educational and medical facilities.

PROFILE: Established in 1995 and based in Houston, the Albert and Margaret Alkek Foundation is focused on giving back to the people of Texas in alignment with the founders’ interests. Albert Alkek was a self-made man, stock trader, and entrepreneur. Margaret Alkek was a strong believer in education and assisted Albert with his business. During the couple’s lifetime, most of their donations were channeled towards medical research and education. Current areas of foundation funding are medicine, education, community, and culture.

This family foundation is private and does not articulate its grantmaking strategies. However, the Alkek Foundation almost always chooses grantees based on personal relationships and proactive initiatives. Unsolicited inquiries are rarely funded. The foundation does not typically support equipment purchases, service club organizations, or fundraising events.

Most past grants have been between $10,000 and $500,000. Occasionally, it awards grants over $1 million for hospital construction projects. Otherwise, most grants have gone to program support, not general operating support. In a past year, the funder gave over $9.9 million to medical causes, over $1 million to educational causes, $427,000 to community causes, and $631,000 to cultural causes. Annual giving has hovered around the $10 million mark for many years. See the list of past grantees on the funder’s Grants page. Review recent tax return information here. Grantmaking is limited to organizations and projects that serve Texas.

Although the foundation does not welcome unsolicited full applications, it does accept brief letters of inquiry throughout the year with no deadlines. Such a letter should be one or two pages in length and specify the amount of money requested. Send letters of inquiry via mail to the funder’s address because Alkek does not accept fax or email submissions. Direct general questions to the foundation at 713-652-6601 or via email at info@alkek.org.

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