Hildebrand Foundation: Texas Grants

OVERVIEW: The Hildebrand Foundation is the creation of billionaire couple Jeff and Mindy Hildebrand, who focus their grantmaking on faith-based organizations that serve the poor and needy in Houston and throughout Texas.

FUNDING AREAS: Poor and needy families, local parks, faith-based nonprofits

IP TAKE: Interested grantseekers should pursue a faith-based angle unless they are directly affiliated with a local cause that the Hildebrand couple is already involved with. Low-income families in Houston are the target for much of the foundation’s grantmaking.

PROFILE: Established in 2002, the Hildebrand Foundation is the foundation of Jeff Hildebrand, the CEO of Hilcorp Energy and his wife, Mindy. Jeff Hildebrand found success in the oil industry, and the couple resides in Houston. He started Hilcorp in 1989 with a passion for buying old oilfields and applying technology to make them profitable again. He's one of the biggest players in the industry, having bought several oil fields in Alaska from BP for $1.25 billion and previously making a $1.8 billion sale to Marathon Oil. The foundation aims “to provide for the poor and needy through faith-based organizations.”

The Hildebrand Foundation’s website does not provide extensive information, but it does give a few insights into the grant guidelines. Hildebrand prefers faith-based organizations, especially ones in the Houston area. Overall, nonprofits should serve the poor and needy. Although the foundation considers requests for construction funding, it rarely supports equipment needs.

Hildebrand grants range anywhere from $5,000 to $10 million. The funder does not provide an online grants database on its website. However, past grantees include the Bayou Greenways 2020 project, a program of the Houston Parks Board, Northwest Assistance Ministries, and Monarch School. Texas and especially the Houston areas are the geographic focuses of this funder.

This funder accepts letters of inquiry at any time of the year. The foundation provides grantseekers with a full application upon receipt and approval. There are no deadlines for grant applications, and the board considers requests quarterly. Direct questions to Executive Director Carol Deason at cdeason@hilcorpventures.com or 713-965-9177.

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