Lee and Joseph D. Jamail Foundation: Texas Grants

OVERVIEW: The Lee and Joseph D. Jamail Foundation focuses on Houston area nonprofits and the issues of education, Texas communities, arts, and health.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, Texas communities, arts, health

IP TAKE: Recently, the foundation’s annual grantmaking has been less than $1 million, but many organizations are still receiving steady funding.

PROFILE: Established in 1986, the Lee and Joseph D. Jamail Foundation is based in Houston, Texas. Joseph D. Jamail was born into a Lebanese family and graduated from St. Thomas High School in Houston before going on to the University of Texas at Austin, where he received his B.A. in 1950. Jamail graduated from the University of Texas School of Law three years later. Jamail was referred to as the "King of Torts" and was once considered one of the wealthiest practicing attorneys in the nation. He passed away in December 2015. The foundation’s grantmaking interests are education, Texas communities, arts, and health.

The foundation does not have a website to guide grantseekers. With his late wife Lee, Jamail gave millions to education, medical research and the performance arts in the state of Texas. In education, the foundation has given millions of dollars to the University of Texas system over the years. It has also given millions to UT Law School and University of Texas at Austin. Though Jamail's largest sums in this area have gone to the University of Texas, other sums have gone to other colleges and universities in Texas and also to elementary and secondary schools in the state. Meanwhile, other grantmaking efforts include parks, art museums, music projects, theaters, and medical centers.

Foundation grants are often between $50,000 and $1 million, with individual grant amounts varying widely based on the cause and grantee. Review the funder’s recent tax records to learn more about local giving. Although Houston is a centerpiece of this foundation’s giving, it supports causes throughout the state of Texas.

The foundation does not appear to accept unsolicited grant applications. The foundation’s telephone number is 713-622-3900.

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