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The F. B. Heron Foundation


Last Updated: 2016-05-11

At A Glance

The F. B. Heron Foundation

100 Broadway, 17th Fl.

New York City, NY United States 10005-4506

Telephone: (212) 404-1800


Type of Grantmaker

Independent foundation

Financial Data

(yr. ended 2014-12-31)

Assets: $288,711,960

Total giving: $8,446,426






Established in 1992 in DE - Heron was created in 1992 with the mission of helping people and communities help themselves, especially those at the bottom of the economic ladder. The foundation's goal is to help people in the United States escape poverty, thrive, and enjoy the benefits of full livelihood, opportunity and community. Its strategy is to invest capital to expand reliable employment and economic opportunity for those on the margins

Purpose and Activities

The foundation exists solely to serve a public purpose--making investments that further the ability of people and communities to move out of poverty and thrive. This purpose guides not only the foundation's grantmaking, but the use of all of its resources, including investment capital, so that it can use them fully to contribute to the reduction of poverty, the widening of opportunity, and the improvement in material and social well-being for disadvantaged people and communities. The Heron investment policy reflects its intent to balance the social and financial return on all assets, and to select opportunities for deploying capital, whether as grants or as investments, so as to maximize the combination of both kinds of return within each. Heron's investing goal is to align 100 percent of its capital with its mission. Heron targets growth stage nonprofits and for-profits that will: 1) increase and maintain reliable employment, especially for people who are economically disadvantaged; 2) advance systemic innovations in the economy that will help individuals and communities succeed; 3) and result in net positive contributions to society. The foundation operates through a single capital deployment office, removing the traditional foundation's distinction between investing and grantmaking. Heron understands that money alone is not enough for an enterprise to succeed, therefore the foundation primarily co-invests. Heron's Investment Approach: a) 100 percent of its assets for mission; b) Tax-status agnostic (for-profits and nonprofits); c) All forms of capital (debt, equity, grants, intellectual, etc.); and d) Growth-stage enterprises.

Program Area(s)

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

Effective Practices in Philanthropy

The program supports mission-related investing (MRI) and general operating support for efforts that: educate, catalyze and encourage others to undertake promising MRI and core support grantmaking strategies; develop products that promote MRI and facilitate specific MRI deals; and that disseminate lessons learned and case examples for both MRI and core support grantmaking.

Employee Matching Gifts

The foundation matches the monetary gifts of its employees to charitable organizations.

Investment in and Influence of Good Employers

The foundation invests all its financial assets in a range of enterprises that hire, train, and promote Americans now excluded from or trapped at the bottom of the economy. The investments span the asset class spectrum, including grants, loans, and equity investments and include every type of enterprise; nonprofits, for-profits, cooperatives, partnerships, and government. It also invest non-financial forms of capital; social, moral, reputational, and knowledge; engaging with like-minded investors and enterprises to influence more people to share our approach. The foundation invest directly and with others, through co-investments, intermediaries, and funds. .

Program-Related Investment

The foundation seeks to accelerate the level of its assets invested in efforts with strong financial and social returns. Mission-Related Investments may take the following forms: 1) Program-Related Investments, typically low-interest senior or subordinated loans or equity-like investments to nonprofit or for-profit organizations whose work closely corresponds with the Foundation’s programmatic interests; 2) Market-rate insured deposits in low-income designated credit unions or community development banks; and 3) Other mission-related investments including, but not limited to, private equity and fixed-income securities offering a risk-adjusted market rate of return with substantial social benefits to low-income families and communities.

Fields of Interest

  • Economic development
  • Employment
Population Groups
  • Economically disadvantaged people
  • Low-income and poor people

Financial Data

Year ended 2014-12-31

Assets: $288,711,960 (market value)

Expenditures: $14,766,543

Total giving: $8,446,426

Qualifying distributions: $14,616,208

Giving activities include:

$20,456 employee matching gifts

$1,375,433 for loans/program-related investments