The Chapman Foundations

OVERVIEW: This funder supports a wide range of issues in Oklahoma and Colorado, including education and medical research. Unsolicited letters of inquiry are accepted throughout the year.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, medical research, health, human services, civic, community programs, arts and culture, nature and wildlife

IP TAKE:  This is a great funder to know for groups in the Tulsa area. Don’t worry about which Chapman Foundation is a better fit for your idea. The trustees will decide that for you.

PROFILE: The Chapman Foundations are made up of the H.A. and Mary K. Chapman Charitable Trust and the Mary K. Chapman Foundation. Each entity makes grants to public charities.

The vast majority of grants from this funder goes to groups in Oklahoma and Colorado. Within those states, the cities of Tulsa and Colorado Springs see the most grants. Many of these grants are in the areas of human services, civic programs, and community programs.

These interests trace back to founder H. Allen Chapman, who was born in Colorado and lived most of his life in Tulsa. He was an independent oil and gas producer and established this foundation in 1976. His wife Mary ran her own giving program after the death of her husband in 1979. She established her charitable trust before her death in 2002. This second foundation was fully funded in 2005.

Each of the two Chapman Foundations has their own typical giving priorities. The H.A. and Mary K. Chapman Charitable Trust focuses on education and medical research. The Mary K. Chapman Foundation focuses more on health, medical research, and caring for the less fortunate—Mary was a nurse. But overall, both foundations give broadly. Other topics of interest have been arts, culture, nature, and wildlife.

Priority has often been given to colleges and universities in Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Texas, as well as elementary and secondary education in Oklahoma. Other Oklahoma priorities are healthcare, human services, civic and community, and arts and culture. After Tulsa and the surrounding counties, the funder is most concerned with the rest of Eastern Oklahoma.

The application process begins with a letter of inquiry, which is to be submitted electronically to Invited applicants should send in the required proposal forms to the Colorado Springs office. The trustees review grant requests in March, June, September, and December.

For administration, both foundations are handled by the same staff and trustees, and all the forms, guidelines, and procedures are the same too. The co-managers and trustees decide which grant requests are the best fit for both trusts. Current 990 forms can be downloaded for both foundations here.

Chapman Foundations Management, LLC’s primary office is based in Tulsa, and there’s also a branch office in Colorado Springs. The best point of contact for grantseekers is the sole program officer Andie Doyle. Donne W. Pitman and J. Jerry Dickman co-manage the operations of the foundations as executive managers and trustees.


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