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Doris Duke Charitable Foundation


Last profile update: 05/24/2018
Last grant data update: 05/24/2018

At A Glance

Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

650 5th Ave., 19th Fl.

New York City, NY United States 10019-6108

Telephone: (212) 974-7000


Type of Grantmaker

Independent foundation






Established in 1996 in NY - Founded by the late Doris Duke, the only child of James Buchanan Duke, a founder of the American Tobacco company and Duke Energy Company. Upon his death in 1925, J.B. Duke's fortune was divided between his 12-year-old daughter and the Duke Endowment, the foundation he established to serve the people of the Carolinas. Although Doris Duke lived a private life, she contributed to a number of public causes. She was an active supporter of medical research and child welfare throughout her life. When she was just 21, she established a foundation called Independent Aid, which later became the Doris Duke Foundation. It is estimated that she gave away more than $400 million in current dollars during her lifetime, often as anonymous contributions. Doris Duke died in October 1993 at the age of 80. In her will, she left the majority of her estate to the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

Purpose and Activities

The mission of the foundation is to improve the quality of people's lives through grants supporting the performing arts, environmental conservation, medical research and the prevention of child abuse. In addition to its grantmaking activities, the foundation will support three affiliated operating foundations: Duke Farms Foundation, the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, and the Newport Restoration Foundation.