A post to Exponent Philanthropy's blog

Boosting Civic Engagement Through Impactful Grantmaking

Photo by Tiffany Tertipes on Unsplash

We’re excited to share the story of a client who’s using its charitable capital to increase civic engagement:

The Langeloth Foundation supports health and racial equity outcomes for all people in order to foster and sustain safe and healthy communities. It envisions a society that is free of the systematic barriers that prevent people and communities from reaching their full potential.

As a leader in charitable giving, the Langeloth Foundation recognizes that it cannot be passive on civic engagement. In June, the foundation made the first of three major investments, totaling $20 million, to support nonpartisan civic participation in the 2020 election.

Supporting nonpartisan civic participation

The Langeloth Foundation supported the Alliance for Youth Organizing whose mission is to empower local organizations managed by young people to strengthen our democracy; fix the economy; and right the injustices many communities face. The Alliance for Youth Organizing worked diligently throughout the election cycle to register as many eligible young voters as possible before the election.

The Langeloth Foundation also invested in the Youth Engagement Fund. Much like the Alliance for Youth Organizing, it strives to energize young voters especially youth of color to create change. And it’s the only donor collaborative focused on expanding youth civic engagement led by people of color, for people of color.

The Langeloth Foundation gave considerably to the State Infrastructure Fund (SIF), a donor collaborative in pursuit of a fair and equitable society with inclusive communities where all members have equal opportunities and access to justice. SIF used the funding to build digital, relational, and online engagement programs to promote voter engagement. The funding was also used for comprehensive election protection efforts to ensure safe and robust access to ballot boxes.

Adjusting spending policies

The immense challenges of this year warranted increased giving. But adjusting spending policies in response to major need can be an uncomfortable process for charitable boards.

To support the Langeloth Foundation’s goal to make a more extensive investment in civic engagement, Glenmede worked with the organization’s board to responsibly evaluate options through continuous conversations. In these discussions, we presented adjusted modeling scenarios that responded to the foundation’s new cash needs. Ultimately, this effort resulted in a $20 million investment designed to amplify the efforts of nonprofits working at the forefront of voter engagement.

We also partner with the Langeloth Foundation on mission-aligned investing. By leveraging the organization’s assets, the foundation can maximize its impact on areas of concern, like civic engagement.

As an OCIO, we know that our work has an outsized impact on the nonprofits and foundations that we serve, as well as the communities empowered by their grantmaking. We are proud to partner with organizations, like the Langeloth Foundation, who strategically allocate charitable resources to create a more equitable future.


Glenmede is an independent and privately held investment and wealth management firm.

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