Supporting Just and Sustainable Communities

Our History

The Surdna Foundation was founded in 1917 by John Emory Andrus to pursue a range of philanthropic purposes. To this day, family stewardship of the Foundation is guided by Andrus’ commitment to serving those in need.

Learn More


Through our investments, we dismantle the barriers that limit opportunities to create more prosperous, enriching, and sustainable communities. Taken together, our investments build capacity, spark innovation, and connect stakeholders while encouraging lesson-sharing between grantees.

Inclusive Economies

We support and invest in the growth of robust, sustainable economies with diverse businesses owned by people of color and the advancement of equitable economic development.

Learn More

Sustainable Environments

We support the creation of just and sustainable communities in which low-wealth and communities of color have the power to self-determine the ownership, control and stewardship of land and its infrastructure assets.

Learn More

Thriving Cultures

We invest in artists, culture-bearers, designers, and media-makers of color who partner with their communities to radically imagine justice and foster the conditions for just systems and practices to be adopted.

Learn More
Latest News & Events Learn More
Inclusive Economies
August 4, 2022

Mekaelia Davis Joins Ballmer Group; Patrice R. Green to Serve as Interim Director

The Surdna Foundation announced today that Inclusive Economies Program Director Mekaelia Davis is moving on to head up a new program at the Ballmer Group, a philanthropic entity that invests roughly $450 million annually in creating economic…

Sustainable Environments
August 1, 2022

Alison Corwin Departs Surdna for an Exciting New Role at a Climate-Focused Foundation

The Surdna Foundation announced today that Sustainable Environments Program Director Alison Corwin is leaving to take on an exciting new role with a spend-down foundation focused on climate. Stay tuned for more on that soon! For nearly a decade,…

July 26, 2022

Threewalls Announces 2022 RaD Lab+Outside the Walls Fellows

THREEWALLS ANNOUNCES 2022 RAD LAB+OUTSIDE THE WALLS FELLOWS Five ALAANA-Identified Artists Receive Research Support for Racial Justice Work Artists Will Receive $400,000 to Support Five Year-Long Neighborhood-Based Projects in Chicago…