Allan and Shelley Holt

NET WORTH: Unknown

SOURCE OF WEALTH: The Carlyle Group 

FUNDING AREAS: Education (STEM), Youth, Health, Jewish Causes, Arts & Culture

OVERVIEW: Allan Holt and his wife Shelley move their philanthropy through the Hillside Foundation. The Holts recently gave a $20 million gift to United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Besides Jewish causes, the couple also supports STEM education, health, and more. The family's philanthropy through their foundation centers on the Mid-Atlantic region. 

BACKGROUND: Allan M. Holt graduated from Rutgers University and received his MBA from UC Berkeley. Holt worked at Avenir Group, Inc., an investment and advisory group, before joining The Carlyle Group in 1992. Based in Washington D.C., Holt is a senior partner and managing director of the Carlyle Group and Co‑Head of Carlyle’s U.S. buyout group.


EDUCATION: Allan and Shelley Holt have keyed in on STEM in their education philanthropy. Part of this could be that Carlyle deals with the aerospace, defense, and IT sectors. Holt is a board member of Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum. The Holts helped establish the Holt Scholars Program at the museum which supports classroom activities, field trips, and teacher professional development. The couple and their foundation have also supported DCSTEM Network's STEM Institute for Teachers, and the ARCS Foundation, an "organization started and run entirely by women who boost American leadership and aid advancement in science and technology."

Outside of STEM education, the Holts have also supported Holt's alma mater UC Berkeley; Maya Angelou School, a public charter; DC Greens, a nonprofit that provides education and school garden programs to engage children and low-income families in sustainable nutrition; and Island Grown Initiative, a sustainable agriculture organization providing local food advocacy and farm education through a farm-to-school program on Martha’s Vineyard.

YOUTH: Shelley is a trustee of the Barker Adoption Foundation, which the family steadily supports. The family has also given strong support to YMCA of Martha's Vineyard. The Holts have taken up residence in Martha's Vineyard, where a portion of their giving takes place. 

HEALTH: The Holts have focused a lot on women's healthcare and access to treatment. The couple via their foundation have supported 3D mammography at Mercy Hospital in Baltimore and Martha’s Vineyard Hospital.

JEWISH CAUSES: The son of Holocaust survivors, Holt was appointed vice chairman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council by President Obama in December 2015. The Holts, via their Hillside Foundation, recently gave a $20 million gift to United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in support of a comprehensive revitalization of its permanent exhibition. Another important grantee is Congregation B'nai Tzedek (CBT). The Holts have been steady supporters of the synagogue. Other grantees have included Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, and The Defiant Requiem Foundation. The film, Defiant Requiem, tells the little-known story of the Nazi concentration camp, Terezin.

ARTS AND CULTURE: Grantees have included the Kennedy Center, National Children’s Museum, and the Smithsonian Institution.

OTHER: The Holts have supported Venture Philanthropy Partners (VPP), a "philanthropic investment organization that helps great leaders build strong, high-performing nonprofit institutions." A component of the family's philanthropy also involves human services.  

LOOKING FORWARD: Holt is in his 60s and very much engaged in business. Grantmaking of late seems to be on the rise, up from around $1 million annually at the start of the decade, to around $5.2 million in the most recent fiscal year released to the public. If Holt is like other Carlyle philanthropists we've written about, this is just the beginning. 


The Hillside Foundation does not provide a clear avenue for getting in touch with the couple but below is an address

The Hillside Foundation, Inc.
1001 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., Ste. 220S
Washington, DC 20004