Topic: Diversity

Timeline: A Century of American Philanthropy’s Engagement with Race and Racism

Delving into a century of philanthropic engagement with race, from Reconstruction to the Civil Rights era.

1960s

“Highest Standards”: Elite Philanthropy and Literary Black Voices during the Civil Rights Era

Against a backdrop of white, establishment concepts of literary excellence, one foundation struggled to appreciate Black voices.

1950s 1960s 1970s

Funding a Social Movement: The Ford Foundation and Civil Rights, 1965-1970

A story recounting many accusations, from rigged elections to the meddling of big private money in grassroots organizing.

1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s

Black Education and Rockefeller Philanthropy from the Jim Crow South to the Civil Rights Era

Applying a vast fortune to the American race problem, but with decades of false assumptions and well-intended approaches that fell short.

1990s

In Brief: “Manels” Before #MeToo

A foundation’s early criticism of the all-male conference panel, before #nomoremanels

1960s 1970s

Programming for the People: Diversity in Early Public Television

Philanthropy helped carve out a public space for the expression of race, culture, and critical perspectives.

1920s 1930s

Who Belongs in the Boy Scouts? Philanthropy’s Support for Black Scouting

A foundation struggled to make one of America’s oldest youth organizations more racially inclusive. But it only got so far under Jim Crow.

1960s

The Origins of the Rockefeller Foundation Equal Opportunity Program

How a simple grant request seeded the launch of a full program addressing inequality.

Elementary children of diverse ethnic backgrounds get ready to go inside their school, two hold hands
1950s 1960s

Can Data Drive Social Change? Tackling School Segregation with Numbers

In the years before Brown v. Board, a philanthropic fund hoped research and data would turn the tide on attitudes toward segregation.