Tucson Foundations

OVERVIEW: Tucson Foundations is made up of 11 private family foundations that are locally focused. The Lohse family directs all 11 foundations and has a lot of funding power in Tucson, Arizona.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, health, hospitals, child welfare, libraries, the arts, community benefit, youth, hunger, homelessness.

IP TAKE:  Check the funder’s website to see if unsolicited applications are being accepted again and what the guidelines are. It recently took a break from new grants to focus on current commitments.

PROFILE: The Tucson Foundations is a collection of 11 foundations directed by the Lohse Family. Attorney Ashby I. Lohse was a Tucson native who specialized in estate planning and probate law. He worked with many local families who set up private foundations in their names to distribute funds after their deaths. The Lohse family is committed to philanthropy in Tucson and throughout Southern Arizona.

The Tucson Foundation offers challenge and matching grants, program support, capital campaign support, general operating expense supports, emergency funds, and endowments. Reports from capital campaign recipients are required once or twice per year, and funding reports are required of all grant recipients.

Here is a list of the foundations within the Tucson Foundations and what they support:

  1. Walter and Juliet J. Absolon Foundation – hospitals, universities, medical research, children.
  2. Calistri Family Foundation – pre-selected organizations, possibly education and religion.
  3. Martin and Hildegard Gluck Foundation – humanitarian organizations, medical, child welfare.
  4. Graesser Foundation – University of Arizona, elderly, child welfare, veterans organizations, aid to military families.
  5. George Mason Green and Lois C. Green Foundation – hospitals, child welfare, libraries, public radio and television, the arts.
  6. Lohse Foundation – family designated, possibly community benefit.
  7. Margaret E. Mooney Foundation – the arts, child welfare.
  8. Mulcahy Foundation – child welfare, education.
  9. Martha R. Neff Foundation – education.
  10. Vance Foundation – child welfare, arts, museums, homelessness, the University of Arizona.
  11. Lucille E. Williams Foundation – arthritic, asthma and heart research and treatment, homelessness, hunger, youth, education, child and adult welfare.

In a recent year, the Tuscon Foundations awarded over $1.4 million. Grants ranged from $1,000 to $100,000. Top grantees included St. Ambrose Parish and School, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Arizona, the University of Arizona. Other grantees include the YMCA of Southern Arizona, Hopi School, Habitat for Humanity Tucson, and the Civic Orchestra of Tucson.

Lists of recently awarded grants, as well as a link to Form 990s for financial information, can be found here.

Tuscon Foundations recently stopped accepting uninvited grant proposals because it is heavily committed to current grantees. However, this could change in the future—the funder has continued to meet with current recipients and other groups seeking advice. At other times, this funder has typically accepted requests throughout the year.

The organization's board of directors values collaboration, respect, integrity, and community impact. Robert Lohse, Linda Lohse, Jennifer Lohse, Patricia Lohse, and Jason DePizzo serve on the board of the Tucson Foundations.

General questions can be directed to the foundation team at 520-791-3939 or to Linda, Jennifer, or Trish Lohse via online form. These three professionals are the best contacts for grantseekers. They will meet with nonprofits to discuss plans, activities, or just to brainstorm. Meetings are scheduled Mondays through Thursdays from 9am to 1pm.


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