What is a Community Foundation?

A community foundation is a charitable non-profit organization that serves as a charitable link between donors and the local community to improve and develop the quality of life in a specific geographic location by focusing on the unique needs and goals of the community.

To address these various demands, a community foundation will receive donations from individuals, families, businesses, and other organizations and efficiently distribute the funds to local nonprofits, community projects, and other initiatives.

The IRS recognizes community foundations as public charities because they receive support from the general public and their boards and committees represent the areas served by the foundation.

A key feature of community foundations is the ability to build and manage endowment funds. Endowment funds are permanent investment funds that generate income to help charitable activities and projects over a perpetual period. Using professional advice, guidance, and expertise, community foundations can be continual and sustainable funding sources for various initiatives such as education, healthcare, arts and culture, social services, community advocacy, and environmental conservation.

Community foundations also play a vital role in community leadership and collaboration. By bringing together various stakeholders, including nonprofits, government agencies, and local residents, community foundations act as catalysts that encourage collaboration, address community needs, set priorities, and develop strategies to reach charitable goals. Additionally, community foundations offer expertise and resources to maximize the impact of these charitable activities and help other nonprofits become more effective and efficient.

Taos Community Foundation is your community’s trusted philanthropic partner, committed to nurturing philanthropy, fostering collaboration, and supporting initiatives that improve the well-being and vitality of Taos and surrounding communities.

A History of Taos Community Foundation

Taos Community Foundation, Inc. was incorporated as a community foundation to serve Taos and western Colfax County.
Taos Community Foundation achieved Tax-exempt status, becoming a 501(c)(3) organization.
Taos Community Foundation hires its first executive director, Daniel T. Montoya.
In 1999, TCF granted almost $300k to local nonprofits.
TCF's first competitive grant cycle was established in 2000.
In 2000, Taos Community Foundation established its first donor-advised fund.
Taos Community Foundation awarded its first scholarship in 2003.
In 2004, Taos Community Foundation established its first endowment fund.
TCF established its first fiscally-sponsored project, which would later evolve into the Taos Entrepreneurial Network.
The Taos Public Education Fund was established, which TCF now utilizes for Taos teacher grants.
Taos Community Foundation reaches $5 million in assets under management.
The Taos Property Foundation is established, allowing TCF to accept gifts of physical property.
TCF celebrates the 20th anniversary of Ben Meyers Ridge-A-Thon, a charity event held annually at Taos Ski Valley.
Women Give Taos is established. WGT grants $30,000 annually to organizations that focus on helping local women and children.
Taos Community Foundation reaches $10 million in assets under management.
Taos Community Foundation moves into it's new office at 115 La Posta Rd in Taos.
Taos Community Foundation is able to award over $1 million annually in grants for the first time.
TCF's "Fund for Taos" granted more than $1M to support emergency needs during COVID-19 pandemic.
Taos Community Foundation awards $5 million in annual grants for the first time.
Taos Community Foundation hires CJ Grace as the company's first CEO.