Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles Announces Audited 2017 Financial Results

LOS ANGELES —The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles (The Foundation) today reported audited financial results for the year ended Dec. 31, 2017, during which it awarded a record-high $100 million in grants to more than 2,600 nonprofit organizations locally, nationally and in Israel.

Last year’s grant distributions are an increase of more than 23 percent from $81 million awarded in 2016, and cap a five-year period where distributions totaled $413 million, according to The Foundation, the largest manager of charitable assets and planned-giving solutions for Los Angeles-area Jewish philanthropists.

The Foundation stated that approximately $48 million, or 48 percent, of total 2017 grants were awarded to causes in the greater Los Angeles area, with the balance going to programs across the U.S. and throughout the world, principally Israel. Of that $100 million figure, $61 million, or 61 percent, went to Jewish- affiliated causes, while approximately $39 million, or 39 percent, was granted to initiatives and organizations in the secular community.

By field of interest (which are provided in detail at the end of the release), approximately $24 million, or 24 percent of total awarded grants, was directed to programs supporting human services. Another $24 million, or 24 percent, was granted to programs supporting education.

At the most-recent-year end, The Foundation’s total charitable assets under management stood at $1.25 billion, rising 14 percent from $1.1 billion at Dec. 31, 2016 and reflecting the continued strong inflow of contributions from donors, as well as investment portfolio growth.

Contributions (or inflows) to new and existing charitable funds at The Foundation totaled $120 million in 2017. During the past five years, donors have contributed $627 million to Foundation-administered charitable funds. The Foundation reported that it opened 58 new donor advised funds and endowments in 2017.

President and Chief Executive Officer Marvin I. Schotland stated: “The Foundation and its donors distributed a record-breaking $100 million of grants in 2017, reflecting our unwavering belief in tikkun olam (Hebrew for “repair the world”) and the incredible generosity of our family of donors. Putting this into context, nearly 50 percent of last year’s grant awards were distributed to local programs, which speaks to our mission as a community foundation. Of particular note, nearly a quarter of all monies granted went to programs and causes that support human services, underscoring a fundamental obligation to assist those less fortunate in meeting basic human needs.”

Schotland continued: “We and our donors also directed slightly more than 50 percent of grants to sustain initiatives across the country and in Israel. Our charitable-asset growth to $1.25 billion is significant. As our assets increase, so too does our ability to reinvest in the community through The Foundation’s grantmaking.”

Calendar 2017 Grantmaking by the Numbers

The Foundation reported that last year’s $100 million in grant awards breaks down by field of interest (in dollars and percentage of total giving) as follows:

  • Human services – $24 million (24 percent)
  • Education – $24 million (24 percent)
  • Civic life – $17 million (17 percent)
  • Religious life – $15 million (15 percent)
  • Health – $13 million (13 percent)
  • Arts, culture and humanities – $4 million (4 percent)
  • Environment and animal welfare – $2 million (2 percent)
  • International and foreign affairs – $1 million (1 percent)

Total – $100 million (100 percent)

About The Jewish Community Foundation
Established in 1954, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles manages charitable assets of $1.25 billion entrusted to it by over 1,300 families and ranks among the 10 largest Los Angeles foundations. It partners with donors to shape meaningful philanthropic strategies, magnify the impact of giving, and build enduring charitable legacies. In 2017, The Foundation and its donors distributed $100 million in grants to more than 2,600 nonprofit organizations with programs that span the range of philanthropic giving. Over the past 25 years, it has distributed more than $1 billion in grants to thousands of nonprofits across a diverse spectrum. www.jewishfoundationla.org