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From The Columbus Foundation

“The quality that makes for greatness in a city is its dynamic. How well and how freely are its people working together, giving of themselves, to make it a still finer city?” Harrison M. Sayre, Founder, The Columbus Foundation

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At the heart of The Columbus Foundation’s purpose is the idea that, in working together, our collective action achieves more for our community than our individual acts. That notion prompted founder Harrison M. Sayre to embrace the idea of a community foundation for Columbus 75 years ago, and it continues to motivate our work today.

The Foundation’s ongoing momentum would not be possible without the generosity of our donors and community members. Without those who choose freely to put financial support behind new ideas, programs, and innovative growth and opportunities, our community would be a much different place. They built this, and so can you.

Their commitment is evident when we look at the record-setting grants to the community from donors and legacy gifts at the Foundation over the past three years. In total, an incredible $643 million has been distributed to nonprofits in central Ohio and beyond, helping to bring our donors’ charitable goals to life and illustrating the enormous impact of people coming together to make a difference.

Since our founding, an extraordinary $2.5 billion has benefited our community and others in a wide variety of areas, from healthcare and education to conservation and the arts. These dollars benefit Columbus’ dedicated nonprofit community that serves on the front lines of some of our region’s most pressing issues.

The Foundation is proud to partner with many of the nonprofits featured in this edition of Sophisticated Giving to collaboratively address issues affecting residents—from homelessness and infant mortality to mental health services and the opiate crisis—and work with them to create positive change. The work they do on a daily basis strengthens our community, as inspiring leadership and insightful new programs and services make Columbus stand out as a hub where ideas and innovation meet hard work with great rewards. 

As we transition into our fourth generation of helping donors achieve their charitable goals and establish legacies of giving, we honor Harrison M. Sayre and other visionaries who displayed determination, grit, and, most importantly, hope. We carry that same hope forward, with the same intent—to create a stronger community for all.

Onward, in the spirit of generosity.  


Douglas F. Kridler
President and CEO
The Columbus Foundation

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