Gelvin Foundation

OVERVIEW: The Gelvin Foundation supports mostly community services, but also healthcare, education, and the arts, in and around Tulsa and Eufaula, Oklahoma.

FUNDING AREAS: Community services, healthcare, educational projects, arts

IP TAKE:  This foundation has a small yet accessible staff, so give them a call to discuss an idea or proposal details before submitting. The funder often supports new projects.  

PROFILE: Established in 1996, the Gelvin Foundation is the foundation of Lyle M. Gelvin and is based in Eufaula, Oklahoma. Since inception, the funder has given out millions of dollars to hundreds of nonprofits. The funder aims to “make a significant and positive impact on the quality of life for all Oklahomans by supporting a variety of community services, health care programs, educational projects, and programs in the arts.”

These are the top four areas of funding. However, Gelvin has indicated that it may change its priorities as community needs change. The only religious grants typically go to St. John’s Episcopal Church in Tulsa, which the founder attended and supported during his life. Past support has gone to community service groups like Emergency Infant Services, Global Gardens, Hope House of McAlester, and Crossroads. Arts grants include the Tulsa Project Theatre, the Tulsa Historical Society, and others. Health support has gone to Prevent Blindness Oklahoma and Oklahoma Project Woman,

Foundation grants often range from $20,000 to $100,000, but it occasionally awards grants over $1 million. View a list of grant recipients here. Foundation grantmaking is limited to nonprofits in the state of Oklahoma. Most of the grants stay in northeastern Oklahoma and within a thirty-mile radius of Tulsa or Eufaula. All projects must benefit the residents of this geographical area. Gelvin provides project and program support for new ideas, not general operating support. Gelvin also commonly supports basic capital funding, equipment purchases, and special program needs. It is also common for this funder to provide matching grants.

Gelvin accepts unsolicited grant proposals from local nonprofits. Grants applications received by February 10 will be reviewed in March, by May 10 in June, by August 10 in September, and by November 10 in December. Either mail or email the proposal to one of the directors. There are no specific forms to fill out, but the foundation appreciates brevity with any format. Grantseekers will typically receive an acknowledgment of receipt within about two weeks of sending in a proposal. Direct general questions to the staff at 918-452-3703 or 918-581-5500.


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