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The Philadelphia Foundation is the linchpin of an innovative media structure

An innovative partnership was launched in 2016 between TPF and a leading national philanthropist who thought “out of the box” to create The Lenfest Institute for Journalism, whose goal is to bolster democracy by developing a lasting business model to sustain independent local journalism in the digital age.

Originally announced as the Institute for Journalism in New Media, it was renamed in honor of H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest, who created it. Mr. Lenfest also contributed a $20 million endowment and 99.9% of the Philadelphia Media Network, owner of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News and philly.com.

Jim Friedlich, who had been CEO of Empirical Media Advisors, became the Institute’s Executive Director and CEO on Sept. 1.

The investment in innovative news initiatives, new technology and sustainable business models for local news generated widespread interest. The announcement generated more than 358 stories regionally, nationally and internationally, with coverage by Fortune, the Wall Street Journal, NPR, Reuters, The Guardian, ShanghaiDaily.com and Al Jazeera America – to name just a few.

The Institute also was the focus of presentations at venues including the Knight Media Learning Seminar, the Quarterly Executive Forum of The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia and other convenings of funders, nonprofits and advisors.

The Institute’s structure allows for donations from individuals, foundations, corporations and other entities, all of which are tax-deductible through TPF.

It’s an example of how The Philadelphia Foundation works creatively with leaders and corporations – often on complex solutions – to strengthen the well-being of the region.

Gerry Lenfest, creator of The Lenfest Institute for Journalism


Working with a global company to provide regional philanthropic impact

Our partnership with GSK allows one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies to effectively support a community where it has a major presence.

The GSK Opportunity Scholarship, begun in 2009 with $1 million, had awarded almost $335,000 by the end of 2016 to Philadelphians who have overcome adversity such as serious illness, sexual abuse, domestic violence and personal loss.

Funded by a three-year $5 million GSK grant, the Get Hype Philly! initiative celebrated its first full year in 2016. It supported 10 nonprofits working collectively to empower Philadelphia teens as agents of healthy change.

The GSK Inspiring Youth Endowment Fund, established with us in 2011 to benefit young people in the city of Philadelphia, has provided $750,000 to support summer youth work preparation programs and has helped launch a bio-medical employment training program.

Greater Philadelphia is among many locations to be enhanced by the presence of GSK, which sets a stellar example of corporate community commitment. We are honored to work closely with them.

Students participating in Get Hype Philly! as they work with Common Market

Harry Halloran headshot

The Harry R. Halloran, Jr. Charitable Trust supports an ambitious program of inspiring, innovating and accelerating sustainable social interventions that promote human well-being around the world. According to Mr. Halloran, the goal is “to advance job creation, financial inclusion, clean energy, education and the performing arts.”


Photo Credit: Jessica Griffi
Philadelphia Orchestra

A supporting organization and impact investing with a bold international purpose

The Philadelphia Foundation provides the platform that allows the trust to focus on those bold goals while receiving favorable tax treatment as a public charity. The trust also partners with TPF on impact investing.

The Halloran trust is a supporting organization of TPF – a separate legal entity that supports TPF’s mission while providing a cost-effective alternative to a private foundation.

Through TPF, the trust awarded almost $1 million in 2016 to make a difference in our region – and far beyond it. It supported both such long-established regional institutions as The Philadelphia Orchestra Association, the Free Library of Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Ballet Association, Ben Franklin Technology Partners and lesser known local entities such as The Joseph Fund of Camden, which works to transform the lives of those most at-risk, B Lab in Berwyn.

Carbon Roots International: Making “green charcoal” from agricultural waste instead of tree wood reduces deforestation in Haiti.

The trust’s international reach extended to support for Educate! Uganda and to Carbon Roots International, which works to create jobs and reduce deforestation to improve lives in Haiti. Our impact investing partnerships also allow the trust’s investments to align with its values.

Through SJF Ventures, the trust has invested in high growth companies creating a healthier, smarter and cleaner future. It also works with Arborview Capital to achieve impact focused growth capital in areas such as water conservation, sustainable food production and energy efficiency.

A direct investment by Halloran Trust in Revolution Foods has allowed it to provide students in Philadelphia, Boston, Phoenix and Nashville with healthy, fresh and affordable meals and snacks. Key support also has been provided to Be Girl, which provides adolescent girls access to high-performance menstrual products that promote their autonomy – allowing them to attend school – while preserving the environment.

It’s a win-win for all, as together we drive positive social and economic change.