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Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation


Last profile update: 04/12/2017
Last grant data update: 05/09/2017

At A Glance

Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation

223 4th Ave., 1400 Benedum-Trees Bldg.

Pittsburgh, PA United States 15222-1713

Telephone: (412) 288-0360


Type of Grantmaker

Independent foundation






Incorporated in 1944 in PA - The foundation was established as a memorial to Michael and Sarah Benedum's only child, Claude, who died while serving in World War I. The Benedums, both native West Virginians, came to Pittsburgh, PA in 1907. Headquartered thereafter in Pittsburgh, Mike Benedum was well known for his major role as one of the foremost oil and gas wildcatters and independent producers in the American oil and gas industry from its beginning. Mrs. Benedum died in 1951, and Mr. Benedum in 1959 at the age of 90 Michael L. Benedum's directive, to "help people help themselves," suggests the basic human concern that serves as a touchstone for the foundation's efforts, which historically have included a commitment to rural populations in West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania. The foundation focuses its grantmaking on those regions, generally investing two thirds of its grant dollars in West Virginia and one-third in southwestern Pennsylvania The Benedum Foundation purposefully maintains flexibility in its actions. The foundation's chief contribution is its ability, in cooperation with others, to take a long and thoughtful view of problems and solutions and provide carefully directed funding initiatives which involve other community sectors in bringing about positive change and development

Purpose and Activities

The foundation makes grants in three program areas that spans its geographic areas of interest, West Virginia, and in Southwestern Pennsylvania: education, civic engagement, and economic development. In addition, the Foundation supports community development and health & human services grants programs in West Virginia, and in Southwestern Pennsylvania supports the major performing arts organizations within the cultural district. The Foundation recognizes that economic regions do not follow political boundaries, and therefore, the foundation both encourages projects that cross state lines, and supports economic initiatives that benefit the multi-state economy centered on Pittsburgh. .