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Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation


Last Updated: 2016-07-17

At A Glance

Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation

44 E. 64th St.

New York City, NY United States 10065-7306

Telephone: (212) 486-2424


Type of Grantmaker

Independent foundation

Financial Data

(yr. ended 2015-06-30)

Assets: $142,588,771

Total giving: $5,549,195






Incorporated in 1930 in NY - Since 1930, the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation has devoted itself to the promotion of health and the relief of suffering. Kate Macy Ladd established the foundation to honor the memory of her father, Josiah Macy Jr., who was an eighth generation descendant of Thomas Macy, who emigrated from England in 1635. In 1659, Thomas Macy and nine other men purchased Nantucket Island (then a part of New York) to seek religious freedom. Six generations and nearly 200 years later, Josiah Jr.’s grandfather, Captain Josiah Macy, left Nantucket and established a successful shipping firm in New York City. Under Captain Macy’s sons and grandsons the firm prospered, opened one of the first oil refineries in New York, and ultimately was purchased by the Standard Oil Company. In 1876, Josiah Macy, Jr. (known as a prominent philanthropist) died of typhoid fever at the age 38. The family’s philanthropic tradition was continued by his daughter, Kate, who by the time of her death in 1945 had given the foundation $19 million. This endowment has grown and represents the sole source of the foundation’s funds. Until 1945, the foundation focused its grantmaking on medical research in such fields as traumatic shock and war-related psychiatric disorders, geriatrics and aging, arteriosclerosis, genetics and human development, and psychosomatic medicine. The foundation’s extensive conference and publication program was also started during this period. From the end of World War II through the mid-1960s, the foundation shifted its focus to support the efforts of medical schools to expand and strengthen their basic science faculties. During that time, the foundation also began supporting the emerging fields of basic reproductive biology, human reproduction, and family planning, and fostered their incorporation into the biological, behavioral, and social science bases of academic obstetrics and gynecology. Since the mid-1970s, the overwhelming majority of the foundation’s grants have supported projects that broaden and improve medical and health professional education. Today, it is the only national foundation solely dedicated to improving the education of health professionals.

Purpose and Activities

Dedicated to improving the health of the public by advancing the education and training of health professionals. The foundation's grantmaking is focused on projects that: a) Demonstrate or encourage interprofessional education and teamwork among health care professionals;b) Teach principles of patient safety, quality improvement, and system performance; c) Develop new models for clinical education, including community-based models;d)Increase the diversity of the health care professional workforce through career development for underrepresented minorities; and c) Improve education for the care of underserved populations. .

Program Area(s)

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

Career Development in Health Professions Education

This program supports initiatives to nurture creative faculty members who are devoted to health professional educational reform. It also supports initiatives to diversify the health professions in order to achieve the goal of uniform excellence in health care.

Education for the Care of Underserved Populations

This program supports initiatives to increase the number of healthcare professionals who chose to serve in rural and inner city areas and some of the most vulnerable people in society--racial and ethnic minorities, elderly people, low-income patients and others--who are not receiving the care they need.

Employee Matching Gifts

The foundation matches gifts from full-time employees, directors, director emeriti, and officers to qualified charitable organizations. The gifts are matched up to two dollars for every dollar contributed with a maximum annual match of $10,000 per participant.

Interprofessional Education and Teamwork

This program supports a variety of initiatives designed to support planned and rigorous interprofessional education, focusing on the strong evidence which demonstrates that health care delivered by well-functioning teams leads to better outcomes.

New Curriculum Content

This program supports initiatives for incorporating patient safety, quality improvement, and population health into medical education curriculum.

New Models for Clinical Education

This program supports initiatives that provide clinical education and training for the management of chronic diseases in outpatient or community-based settings.

The Macy Faculty Scholars Program

The Macy Faculty Scholars program – the first of its kind – launched in December 2010. The program aims to accelerate needed reforms in health professions education to accommodate the dramatic changes occurring in medical practice and health care delivery.Under the program, the foundation will select up to five faculty leaders each year. Each Scholar will receive salary support at $100,000 per year over two years. Scholars must be nominated by the Dean of their institutions, who must commit to protecting at least 50 percent of the Scholars’ time to pursue education reform projects at their institution. Each school may nominate only one candidate each year, and will be expected to provide a senior faculty member to mentor the Scholar.The foundation will support educational change in each Scholar’s institution and develop a national network for the Scholars, who will receive career advice from a National Advisory Committee and participate in an Annual Meeting for the program. .

Fields of Interest

  • Education
  • Graduate and professional education
  • Health
  • Medical education
  • Nursing care
  • Public health
Population Groups
  • Academics
  • American Indians
  • Ethnic and racial groups
  • Females
  • Low-income and poor people
  • People of African descent
  • People of Latin American descent

Financial Data

Year ended 2015-06-30

Assets: $142,588,771 (market value)

Expenditures: $9,103,327

Total giving: $5,549,195

Qualifying distributions: $7,951,358

Giving activities include:

$5,417,331 for 53 grants (high: $300,000; low: $1,000)

$131,864 employee matching gifts

$512,265 for foundation-administered programs