Lee and Cynthia King Vance

NET WORTH: Unknown


FUNDING AREAS: Education, Human Services, Health, Arts & Culture, NYC Community

OVERVIEW: Lee Vance and his wife Cynthia King Vance conduct their philanthropy through the Vance Family Foundation, which gave away a little under $500,000 in a recent fiscal year. The Vances' philanthropy centers on New York, and the couple serves on a number of different boards. Human services is one interest. Cynthia has worked in education, and the couple's philanthropy has an education component as well.

BACKGROUND: Lee G. Vance is a graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Business School, earning an MBA in 1985. Vance worked for Goldman Sachs and had a 20-year career in the firm, managing derivative trading in foreign exchange, equity, commodity and fixed income markets. He also made partner at Goldman. Since his retirement in 2000, Vance has turned to novel writing and playwriting, and has published several books. 


EDUCATION: Cynthia is active in education, works as an adjunct professor at Hunter College, and as a strategic advisor for student success at the school. She serves on the board of Classroom Inc., and is a member of the leadership council of NewSchools Venture Fund. Some of Cynthia's other work includes project leader for Newark Public Schools and for the New York City Department of Education. Other recent grantees include Dartmouth College (which received a $100,000 grant in the most recent fiscal year available), Cynthia's alma mater Princeton, Classroom Inc., Hunter College Foundation, City Year New York, Cooke Center for Learning and Development, NewSchools Venture, and Students for Education Reform, which "develops college students into grassroots organizers who fight for educational justice in their communities." 

HUMAN SERVICES: Cynthia has served on the board of SCO Family of Services and Lee currently sits on the board. The outfit provides "necessary services and unconditional care to more than 55,000 of New York’s most vulnerable people." The couple has steadily supported SCO through their foundation, and have also funded other human services outfits, including City Harvest, Robin Hood Foundation, St. Thomas/Food of Life Pantry, Food Bank for NYC, and Connecticut Food Bank. The Vances have underwritten youth-focused outfits, such as Children's Defense Fund and Kids in Crisis, which "provides free, round-the-clock help for Connecticut children, teens, and families of all socio-economic levels dealing with any type of crisis."

HEALTH: Cynthia sits on the board of Montefiore Health System. Other grantees include Montefiore Medical Center, American Red Cross, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Physicians for Reproductive Health.

ARTS AND CULTURE: Recent grantees include Brooklyn Museum, The Public Theater, The Flea Theater, and Theatre For A New Audience.

NYC COMMUNITY: Support has gone to Central Park Conservancy, Broadway Mall Association, and The Fund for Park Avenue. The Vance's foundation also gave close to $90,000 to WNYC Radio through their foundation in the most recent fiscal year available; Cynthia has been board chair at WNYC Radio since 2013.

LOOKING FORWARD: Expect Vance and Cynthia's New York City priorities to continue, particularly considering the various board memberships that this civically-active couple continues to amass.


The Lee and Cynthia Vance Foundation does not provide a clear method of contact, but below is an address: 

Lee and Cynthia Vance Foundation

77 Water St., 9th Fl.

New York City, NY 10005