The mission of the Community Foundation of Broward is to provide leadership on community solutions, and foster philanthropy that connects people who care with causes that matter.
We envision a community where people feel connected and are actively engaged to make Broward better.
The Community Foundation of Broward must:
- Lead boldly
- Bring out the best
- Unite the community
Libby and Jack Deinhardt led a small, dedicated group of community champions who founded the Community Foundation of Broward in 1984. These Foundation pioneers understood that fostering strategic, local philanthropy would ensure a brighter future for Broward. They believed in the power of endowment to provide permanent resources able to tackle our fast-growing community’s emerging challenges. Thanks to their foresight and commitment, the Foundation has grown to more than 400 charitable Funds, which our Fundholders have used to provide more than $100 million in support for the place we call home.
1984 – 1989
- The Community Foundation of Broward was founded by Libby and Jack Deinhardt, who moved to Broward from Cleveland, Ohio where they were closely connected to the Cleveland Foundation.
- The Foundation recruited our Founding Board of esteemed community leaders. The effort was chaired by Jim Blosser, a notable Broward attorney.
- Libby Deinhardt served as full-time volunteer Executive Director.
- The Foundation gave its first grant of just over $1K to pour the foundation on the very first home Habitat for Humanity built in Broward. It was the start of a decades-long relationship that most recently resulted in a $1 million grant from the Foundation’s Mary N. Porter Legacy Fund to prepare the site for Habitat’s new 77 home community in Pompano Beach.
- The Community Foundation adopted the HIV/AIDS crisis as its first leadership role. Though only 2 years old at the time, the Community Foundation of Broward quickly became the first non-government funder to lead the charge for education and understanding as the HIV/AIDS epidemic devastated Broward. Read more about this important effort in our HIV/AIDS Community Update, published in 2012.
- By 1989, more than $588,000 in total grants were awarded to create bold impact in the community (since inception) and total assets exceeded 1.4 million.
1990 - 1995
- Gertrude Gray, became the Foundation’s first “Community Builder” with a gift of over $1 million. A long-time Margate resident, Gray saved her money and invested wisely. When she passed, the gift from her estate created the endowed Gertrude Gray Memorial Scholarship Fund at the Foundation, which to this day, helps needy college students complete their education. Community Builders are bold leaders who create endowed charitable Funds of $1 million or more to tackle Broward’s biggest issues today and forever.
- The Community Foundation gained national recognition when the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation awarded the Foundation a $100,000 grant to build our capacity.
- Libby Deinhardt retired in 1993, nine years after founding the Community Foundation of Broward.
- Jan Crocker was appointed the Foundation's first salaried President in 1993. She had spent the previous three years as full-time associate director of the Foundation. She was also a past president of the Junior League and recipient of the Woman of the Year Award from the American Cancer Society. She served as the Foundation’s President for two years, retiring in 1995.
- The Museum of Discovery and Science established its own operating endowment with a $3 million charitable Fund at the Foundation.
- By 1995, more than $5 million in grants had been awarded to create bold impact in the community (since inception) and total assets exceeded $11 million.
1996 - 2000
- Linda Carter was hired as first President/CEO in 1997. She had spent 15 years as Executive Vice President of the Museum of Discovery and Science, raising nearly $33 million in the museum’s first capital campaign. Twenty-two years later, Linda remains at the helm of the Foundation and has driven significant growth in total endowed assets and bold community impact.
- The Foundation created a Leadership Institute to strengthen local nonprofit organizations through training and coaching of nonprofit CEOs and their Boards. The program ran for 20 years training 11,000 participants who served millions of Broward residents.
- A partnership with the Sun Sentinel created the Unique Lives & Experiences Lecture Series with global celebrities, including Ann Richards, Maya Angelou, Lilly Tomlin and Mary Tyler Moore. Proceeds created a Women’s Fund at the Foundation.
- The Community Foundation of Broward was one of only six Community Foundations nationwide selected to participate in The Kresge Foundation Challenge to promote the establishment of lasting endowments in support of local nonprofit agencies.
- By 2000, more than $13 million in grants had been awarded to create bold impact in the community (since inception) and total assets exceeded $37 million.
2001 – 2007
- The Foundation was selected to be a primary partner in the Merrill Lynch Community Charitable Fund. It was the first Fund that linked a major financial services firm with a nationwide network of Community Foundations.
- The Community Foundation of Broward, the Jewish Community Foundation of Broward and United Way of Broward joined forces to host their first Joint Tax and Estate Planning Seminar for professional advisors in Broward. More than 350 local attorneys, accountants and financial advisors attended the event. The annual event is still going strong today.
- The Professional Advisors Council (PAC) was established. PAC is an elite group of dedicated attorneys and financial professionals who understand the important role philanthropy plays in estate planning. All have referred clients who have established charitable Funds or included the Foundation in their estate plan.
- The First Legacy Society Luncheon was held at Northern Trust Bank to honor bold, forward-thinking local philanthropists who commit to creating a charitable Fund for Broward through their estate plan.
- The Foundation initiated Foster Care reform in Broward by putting spotlight on an issue that had no advocates. By creating public/private partnerships, Broward formed a safety-net for countless youth who age-out of foster care annually. It included the creation of a dedicated one-stop agency that connects youth to education, housing, jobs, transportation and life-coaching. This important and live-changing work is documented in our Collective Impact for Foster Children report.
- The Foundation completed the Kresge Foundation Challenge and exceeds goal by $1 million, results in $4 million in unrestricted dollars to benefit the community in perpetuity and $9 million for the endowments of 18 local nonprofits.
- We were the first community foundation in Florida to be deemed in full compliance with Council on Foundations National Standards.
- By 2007, more than $34 million in total grants had been awarded to create bold impact in the community (since inception) and total assets reached nearly $82 million.
2008 - 2010
- Mary B. Mackenzie, founder of the Motherhood Maternity chain, left $12 million to the Foundation through her estate plan, which was our largest unrestricted gift at the time. Today, the Mary and Alex Mackenzie Community Impact Fund is creating bold impact on the issues that matter in Broward. As of 2019, her Fund has awarded more than $6.5 million in grants and has a balance of more than $13.2 million. It’s a growing investment in our community that will last forever.
- The Foundation introduced the private label technology, PhilNet: Philanthropy Network for Broward, an internet-based software that enables Donor Advised Fundholders to learn about meaningful projects in the community and real time access to Fund information.
- The Foundation launched Re-engage for Good, our initiative to develop ways to engage the 200,000 baby boomers in Broward who would be at retirement age by 2010.
- The Foundation celebrated our 25th Anniversary in 2009. Jerry Greenfield, philanthropist and co-founder of, Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream, gives keynote address at Foundation’s anniversary celebration.
- The Deinhardt Society was established in memory of Libby and Jack Deinhardt, our founders, to support our community leadership work.
- The Community Foundation was selected as one of an elite group of community foundations to be part of CFLeads, a ground-breaking program on the importance of community leadership.
- By 2010, more than $47 million in total grants had been awarded to create bold impact in the community (since inception) and total assets exceed $86 million.
2011 - 2016
- The Foundation announced our largest transitional grant at the time of $300,000 to create a lead agency to address sustainable HIV/AIDS prevention and education in Broward. The result was a decrease in HIV/AIDS infection rates among newborns by increasing testing rates of women in childbearing years. The Foundation’s efforts on this important issue are documented in the HIV/AIDS Community Update, published in 2012.
- Broward Cares was launched. It’s a partnership between the Community Foundation, United Way of Broward County and the Jewish Federation of Broward to jointly engage community philanthropy and respond to disasters affecting our community. It was first activated in 2017 as Hurricane Irma approached Broward and raised nearly $400,000 to support relief, recovery and rebuilding after the storm.
- The Foundation moved to its current location on Fort Lauderdale’s Las Olas Boulevard to accommodate growth and create a town square to convene partners around issues that matter and collaborate on community solutions.
- We completed $2 million OneBroward operating endowment campaign to offset administrative costs and boost support for the Foundation’s leadership work on the issues that matter in Broward.
- The Foundation received a historic $42 million gift from the estate of Mary N. Porter, which created several endowed charitable Funds at the Foundation. Mary’s family was one of the original investors in Mrs. Smith’s pies. One of her Funds, the Mary N. Porter Legacy Fund, was a first-of-its-kind Fund established to help nonprofit organizations expand their facilities to better serve Broward County.
- The Foundation launched the School is Cool initiative to boost Broward’s high school graduation rate to 90% by focusing on middle school success. $1.2 million in matching School is Cool grants supported projects co-created by nonprofits and school principals – a kind of collaboration that had never before occurred in Broward. Today, School is Cool has become a national model powered by a unique $6 million partnership between the Foundation and Broward County Public Schools.
- By 2016, more than $86 million in grants had been awarded to create bold impact in the community (since inception) and total assets broke the $100 million threshold for the first time.
2017 - Present
- Welcomed our 31st and 32nd Community Builders, John and Elaine Krupnick, and The Hudson Family, with an elegant reception atop Pier Sixty-Six Hotel & Marina in Fort Lauderdale.
- The Foundation is named to the Top 100 Community Foundations in the nation from 2013-2019.
- After extensive community research, the Foundation launched the 10 Issues that Matter. They are the greatest challenges to a brighter future for Broward and major community-wide issues that affect each of us. They are the focus of the Foundation’s community leadership work and strategic grantmaking activities.
- The Foundation awarded the largest grant in Foundation history in 2018, a $3 million 3-year matching commitment to Broward Schools to boost high school graduation rates by focusing on middle school success.
- The Foundation released The Silver Tsunami: Is Broward Ready? - a special report that uncovered the real day-to-day challenges facing Broward’s seniors. More than 500 people from the community participated in the study, which has provided increased visibility and driven new collaborations that will change the lives of Broward’s older residents forever.
- The Community Foundation conducted eye-opening research that revealed the pervasive discrimination and stigma that exists in our community and harms the well-being, health and economic security of Broward’s LGBT residents. The research was published in Broward Pride: A Report to the Community, which was widely distributed and has created urgency around this issue across Broward.
- Launched Be Bold Leadership Campaign in 2018, which seeks to raise $500 million in endowed Funds by the Community Foundation’s 40th anniversary in 2024.
- In 2019, the Foundation achieves a Campaign milestone, raising a total of $100 million in combined Legacy Society gifts and new endowed funds in the first year of the Be Bold Leadership Campaign.
- A $1 million grant, made possible by Mary N. Porter’s estate gift to the Foundation, jump-started construction of 77 homes at Habitat for Humanity of Broward’s largest ever new neighborhood.
- To date, the Foundation has awarded $119 million in total grants to create bold impact in the community (since inception), total assets have topped $211 million and the Foundation now is now home to more than 470 charitable Funds established by generous local philanthropists who define Broward’s future.