Carlson Foundation: Texas Grants

OVERVIEW: The Carlson Foundation is the philanthropic vehicle of Carlson Capital Founder Clint Carlson, and his wife, Nancy. The couple's Texas grantmaking focuses on education and youth, arts and culture, human services, and health, strongly tracking with board memberships and personal connections in Dallas and Houston. 

FUNDING AREAS: Education and youth, arts and culture, human services, health 

IP TAKE: The foundation keeps a low profile and does not accept unsolicited proposals. Networking will be key for getting on this funder's radar. 

PROFILE: Established in 2002, Carlson Capital Founder Clint D. Carlson and his wife, Nancy, founded the Carlson Foundation. Grantmaking areas of interest include Education and youth, arts and culture, human services, and health.

The foundation does not have a website to guide grantseekers. However, education is a big interest, and the couple strongly supports their alma mater, Rice University. The school has received millions from the Carlsons. Nancy also holds a JD from University of Texas at Austin School of Law, which the family has also supported. The school is home to the Center for Women in Law, an organization the Carlsons have contributed to as well. Other grantees have included Southern Methodist University, Basalt Elementary School, Dallas Children’s Advocacy School, Preston Hollow Presbyterian School, and Greenhill School, which has been strongly supported. In the arts, the couple's Texas grantmaking involves organizations like Dallas Children’s Theater, Dallas Museum of Art (where Nancy sits on the board), Orchestra of New Spain, Texas Ballet Theater, and TACA (The Arts Community Alliance). In health and human services, the foundation has supported places like North Dallas Food Bank, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, and the S.M. Wright Foundation.

Foundation grants tend to be between $10,000 and $100,000. Review the funder’s recent tax records to learn more about its local giving. The couple's grantmaking via their foundation almost exclusively focuses on Texas organizations, primarily in Dallas and Houston.

Grantmaking of late has tended to involve similar organizations, and the foundation does not appear to accept unsolicited proposals. The phone number to reach the foundation staff is 214-932-9600.

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