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Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust


Last Updated: 2016-07-17

At A Glance

Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust

202 Iowa Ave.

Muscatine, IA United States 52761-3733

Telephone: (563) 263-4010


Type of Grantmaker

Independent foundation

Financial Data

(yr. ended 2015-04-30)

Assets: $319,441,944

Total giving: $15,776,923






Established in 1982 in IA - Founded by Roy J. Carver, who began his career in the late 1930s and 1940s making high quality contractor pumps at the Carver Pump Company in IL. In the late 1950s he started the Bandag Company in Muscatine, IA, a business that eventually became the world's largest producer of tire retread materials and equipment for the transportation industry. The Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust was created through the will of Mr. Carver

Purpose and Activities

Support primarily for biomedical and scientific research and programs addressing the educational needs of youth.

Program Area(s)

The grantmaker has identified the following area(s) of interest:

Carver Iowa Public Library Grant Program

The trust offers directed support for the establishment, expansion and enhancement of community-based library facilities and services. Grants of up to $60,000 are generally awarded for construction, renovation and/or furnishings and equipment needs, including technology-based initiatives that link libraries across multiple sites. Projects emphasizing library patronage among youth are especially encouraged. The trust does not provide grants specifically targeted to making libraries handicapped accessible, although the Board certainly recognizes that need. In addition, while the trust recognizes the significant benefits of distance learning technology, the trust has traditionally avoided awarding grants to support the creation of Iowa Communications Network (ICN) classrooms within new or existing library facilities. Also, although the trust understands that combining library services may be beneficial to a community, as a matter of policy, the trust does not provide funding for joint school/community library projects or facilities.

Carver Medical and Scientific Research Initiative Awards Program

The program provides support for faculty research in the sciences at the University of Iowa and Iowa State University. Tenure-track faculty members from the basic and applied science disciplines are eligible for competitive support to foster innovative ideas that might be considered too tentative or risky by other funding sources. Prospective applicants for this program should contact the research administration office at their respective institutions for more information.

Carver Scholars Program

The Carver Scholars Program provides significant financial aid for selected Iowa students attending four-year public and private colleges and universities within the state of Iowa supported by the initiative. While individual awards may vary, average scholarship amounts are $7,600 at private colleges and $5,200 at public universities. Scholarships are available to graduates of an accredited high school in the state of Iowa. Sophomores at Iowa community colleges or two-year private colleges who intend to transfer to one of these four-year institutions are also eligible. They will apply directly to the institution to which they are transferring. Scholarships are available to full-time (12 hours or more) juniors, who may apply or be nominated for awards in the second half of the sophomore year. Scholarships may be renewed for the senior year, but such renewal is not automatic. Students in all fields of study are eligible for an award. Students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.8 on a 4.0 scale. Other indicators of merit may include test scores, submission of artistic works, essays or other requirements as determined by the selection committee(s). Students must submit a financial profile indicating insufficient personal, family and institutional resources available to pay the cost of attending college full-time. Students must present evidence of unusual social and/or other barriers to attending college full-time, as determined by the selection committee.

Elementary and Secondary Education

A primary focus of the trust's activities in elementary and secondary education is to provide strategic assistance to enhance instruction in the core areas of language arts, science and mathematics. Within this very broad program area projects as diverse as teacher training, development of new curricular models, and the improvement of alternative classroom facilities, have received substantial trust support. Of special interest have been efforts devoted to the unique academic needs of at-risk or underserved youth, as well as initiatives that hold the potential for impacting K-12 education at the state or regional level.

Excellence in Education

The trust celebrates local academic achievement through support for the Excellence in Education program, which honors students, staff and faculty within the Muscatine Community School District with recognition awards and scholarships.

Higher Education

The trust's interests in the area of higher education extend to those projects that strengthen institutions and offer innovative learning opportunities to students enrolled in baccalaureate and graduate programs throughout the grantmaking region of Iowa and parts of Illinois. Typically, funding is awarded to capital or programmatic initiatives that seek to substantively improve instruction or increase access to educational resources, with the goal of better preparing students for future academic and professional challenges. Projects incorporating interdisciplinary approaches and demonstrating the potential for lasting impact among a diverse range of students are especially encouraged.

Medical and Scientific Research

The goal of the trust's program in medical and scientific research is to provide support for innovative investigation that may hold great promise for advancing scientific knowledge and improving human health. In this context, the trust has recognized a variety of university-based scientific endeavors, most notably in the fields of medicine, engineering and the natural sciences. Although grants are occasionally awarded to address institutional capital needs, the focus of this program area is typically on the work of specific laboratories, often emphasizing multidisciplinary approaches and the development of untried, inherently risky research directions.


Projects receiving trust funding under the youth program designation are typically initiatives designed to complement curriculum-based education and encourage individual development and physical well-being. Of grant funds awarded in this category, a significant portion of support has been directed toward the efforts of organizations working with disadvantaged youth and their families.

Youth Recreational Program

Since 1995, the trust has supported a limited number of youth recreational projects within a five-county area of eastern Iowa and western Illinois. Efforts receiving trust support have typically involved the construction or renovation of athletic facilities situated on school or municipal property, such as running tracks, soccer fields and baseball diamonds, among others. However, it should be noted that the trust does not generally provide funding to support school-based playground initiatives, unless they are represented as part of a trust-initiated program, involving multiple sites throughout a region of the state. Program guidelines are: 1) Grants to communities for recreational projects and related activities for youth will be given priority in the counties of Muscatine, Louisa and Scott in Iowa and Rock Island and Mercer Counties in Illinois; 2) Such grants will generally provide no more than 25 percent of total project costs, or $25,000 maximum; 3) Projects that include strong local funding and volunteer support will be given preference; and 4) At least fifty percent of total project costs must be raised before the trust considers an application. Exceptions may be made as circumstances dictate. Recreational projects outside the above areas will continue to be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Fields of Interest

  • Biomedicine
  • Diseases and conditions
  • Elementary and secondary education
  • Higher education
  • Information and Communications
  • Libraries
  • Public libraries
  • Science
  • Youth development
Population Groups
  • Academics
  • Children and youth
  • Students

Financial Data

Year ended 2015-04-30

Assets: $319,441,944 (market value)

Expenditures: $18,249,465

Total giving: $15,776,923

Qualifying distributions: $16,901,139

Giving activities include:

$15,776,923 for 84 grants (high: $1,500,000; low: $4,252)