Marshall Foundation

OVERVIEW: The Marshall Foundation supports education, health, and youth causes in Tucson and Pima County, Arizona. Grant applications are reviewed two times per year.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, health, youth

IP TAKE: This group's founder had a fascinating story and strong dedication to Tucson. Different procedures may apply whether your grant request is under or over $5,000.

PROFILE: The Marshall Foundation was established in 1930 and is based in Tucson, Arizona. It serves the needs of Tucson and Pima County residents in the areas of education, health, and youth projects. Louise Foucar Marshall was a university professor, businesswoman, and philanthropist. Louise and husband Thomas created the organization as the very first private foundation in Arizona. Louise had received a sizable inheritance from her parents and had a talent for real estate investing. Her other passion was helping young women attend the University of Arizona.

The story of Louise and Thomas Marshall is an interesting one. Thomas was a former student of Louise's, and after rumors of his affair with an ex-housekeeper, it was determined that Louise had been poisoned with arsenic. This led to Louise shooting Thomas five times at point-blank range, resulting in his death. Louise was charged with first-degree murder. She was one of the most prominent citizens of Tucson at the time, and the jury was ultimately persuaded by her emotional testimony and acquitted her. She went back to managing real estate holdings and promoting the work of the Marshall Foundation until her death in 1956 at the age of 92. The foundation was the sole beneficiary of Louise’s estate.

Today, the foundation gives around $1.2 million to nonprofits in the local area each year. The University of Arizona receives over $400,000 in scholarship funds and nearly half of the foundation’s total annual donations. Funding categories are institutional university and college scholarships, children and youth programs, arts and cultural organizations and programs, education, rehabilitation, community service organizations and medical research. 

The Marshall Foundation does not fund general operating support, annual support, repeat funding for most projects already funded, or anything outside Pima County. However, the funder does provide support for building projects, programs, exhibits, scholarships, furniture, vehicles, and employee compensation. Over the years, this foundation has donated more than $18 million to Pima County nonprofits.

Grant requests are considered two times per year, and the application process is all online. Letters of intent are due on January 31 and May 31. Within three weeks of those deadlines, invitations to submit full proposals will be sent out.

The foundation is governed by a board of directors that meets once per month. Chuck Jackson is the foundation president, and there are five other members of the board. Day-to-day operations are managed by full-time general manager Jane McCollum, an accounting manager, and an office manager/maintenance coordinator. The address is 814 East University Blvd., Tucson, Arizona 85719.


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