The Kinsman Foundation

College of Philomath Bell Tower

Eligibility Areas

The Foundation makes grants primarily for the purposes detailed here. An important element of all grants is a benefit to the public at large, rather than to specialized populations or groups.

Historic Preservation

Historic preservation has been our principal funding area since our beginning. In 2006 we identified our primary interest in this area as architectural preservation — the preservation, rehabilitation, restoration and reconstruction of historic buildings, structures and related sites. Most of the projects we fund involve buildings that are listed in the National Register of Historic Places, either individually or as a contributing resource in an historic district.

We will continue to consider grants for other historic preservation activities as a secondary interest.

For 2011, Historic Preservation grants are budgeted for approximately one-quarter of our total grants, about $275,000.

Chintimini Wildlife Center baby skunk

Native Wildlife Rehabilitation and Appreciation

Native wildlife rehabilitation is the focus of this interest, and is almost exclusively limited to nonprofits managed by state- and federally-licensed wildlife rehabilitators. These programs offer urgent care of injured and orphaned wildlife native to Oregon and Washington.

A small portion of our native wildlife budget is reserved for wildlife appreciation projects or programs that offer the general public opportunities to observe and appreciate the natural world. These activities will

  • promote individuals’ stewardship of native wildlife and its natural habitat
  • enable people to understand and minimize their impact on the Earth, and
  • promote responsible enjoyment of wildlife in recreational settings.

We do not intend these grants to include policy, research, preservation or protection of wildlife habitat.

We have projected that $150,000, about 15% of our total grant budget, will go to Native Wildlife Rehabilitation and Appreciation in 2011.

Theater women

The Betty Kinsman Fund for Arts, Culture and Humanities

Through this fund the Foundation makes grants supporting literary, theater and photographic arts.

The characteristics we evaluate for these activities, performances, projects and programs are:

  • celebrating the excellence of an individual artist
  • promoting one of the arts disciplines listed above
  • offering an artistic experience directed to the general public
  • exhibiting professional quality
  • including a public presentation of artistic work
  • emphasizing innovation or excellence in presentation.

The Fund does not expect to make grants for:

  • physical improvements to performance or exhibition spaces
  • fairs and festivals
  • arts education
  • activities directed to specialty audiences
  • hobbies or personal enrichment activities
  • commercial museums or galleries

Because we are a small foundation, we see our role as supporting smaller organizations and companies, and in larger urban areas, alternate or secondary ones.

When this Fund was initiated in 2005, music, dance and fine arts grantees were included in this interest area. By the end of 2008, we realized we could not sustain support for those grantees, and 2009 was the last year our former grantees in these disciplines were offered grants. Grants in 2010 were generally limited to previous grantees whose performance seasons we had supported or to whom we had awarded grants in multiple or continuous years.

For 2011, we again anticipate offering grants only to previous literary, theater and photographic arts grantees. Although all proposals will be considered, we do not anticipate awarding 2011 grants to new or previous grantees in other disciplines.

Grants from this Fund will be decided in April 2011; the letter of inquiry deadline is February 15. We will not consider routine small grants for the balance of 2011.

For documentary films, we are unlikely to support an individual film unless it addresses one of our other interest areas or otherwise uniquely appeals to our Foundation. We will continue to consider events that showcase or acknowledge filmmaking or collections of films, such as festivals, awards or prizes.

The Betty Kinsman Fund is expected to distribute approximately $375,000 in 2011.


We expect to continue to initiate some grants not included in these areas, consistent with the interests of our current Directors.

We have reserved $275,000 of our grant funds for these grants in 2011.

Health Care Policy: Discontinued

We have discontinued our Health Care Policy interest area because we have realized we do not have the resources that we think are required to make well-reasoned decisions in this area. Our directors, however, continue to think health care policy issues are important, and have asked staff to refer to them grant requests addressing broad statewide policy issues. We intend to continue grants to the Center for Ethics in Health Care at OHSU. We do not intend to make grants for the delivery of health care or social services.