Mission & History

Our Mission

Our mission is to build permanent endowment funds and meet charitable community needs. The Foundation achieves its mission by:

  • Enabling donors to fulfill their charitable desires
  • Increasing the capacity of nonprofit organizations to fulfill their individual missions
  • Facilitating prudent management and care of funds
  • Promoting community philanthropy through education
  • Providing affiliate services to neighboring communities
  • Meeting needs through grants, scholarships, and pass-through funds

Our History

The foundation was established in 1999 by a committed group of individuals who wanted to create a vehicle that would promote endowment building in the Salina community. The group recruited a board of directors who donated the funds and time to complete the paperwork to create the nonprofit corporation.  A founding donor campaign was initiated and completed within the first year.  Board members secured $2.9 million in gifts and pledges from more than 100 donors to form an administrative endowment for Foundation operations.  In 2000, the foundation’s first executive director was hired and served in the role until 2015. Today, the foundation has grown to 9 staff members in the Salina office, one in the Russell office, and one in Hays.

The foundation’s name was chosen with care to reflect a desire not to limit the scope of its work within the boundaries of Salina. With Salina being the “hub” of a region of smaller communities, the board of directors felt it was important to allow these smaller communities to be included, thus resulting in the addition of the word “Greater” to its name.  The first affiliate was established in 2000. Additional affiliates were added over the years and GSCF now hosts 14 regional affiliate foundations and serve north central Kansas.

Since 1999, the Foundation has enabled donors to generously contribute through its 501(c)(3) status to benefit charitable organizations in Salina and throughout the nation.  The first Foundation Board set a goal to have $10 million in assets in 10 years.  On the foundation’s 10th anniversary, GSCF had assets of more than $50 million and had distributed more than $20 million on behalf of its donors.  The foundation’s assets are now over $200 million. Currently it is the largest community foundation in the state and has grown to include more than 600 funds, serving the needs of hundreds of nonprofits, initiatives and funds throughout greater Salina and north central Kansas.

The Greater Salina Community Foundation continues its vision to multiply the impact of charitable giving by connecting community members, nonprofits and other partners to look forward to a brighter future.  Much has been accomplished and we are ready to do more.

View this timeline to see brief snippets of the Foundation’s growth over time.

Recent News

Match Madness raises over $325,500 for area nonprofits

SALINA, Kan.— The Greater Salina Community Foundation hosted Salina’s 8th annual Match Madness giving day on Thursday, March 22, at Salina Fieldhouse. In 24 hours, over $325,500 was raised for 72 area nonprofit organizations through donations and bonus prizes. A total of 751 unique donors contributed a record-breaking total of $319,444 through 2,011 gifts. This is the highest total dollar amount and number of gifts raised in the event’s history. “This day always amazes me beyond belief,” said Jessica Martin, president and executive director of the foundation. “It is humbling to witness the growing generosity of our donors and the enthusiasm of our nonprofits. Our community is blessed to have such a great[...]

Match Madness set for March 21 at Salina Fieldhouse

SALINA, Kan.— The Greater Salina Community Foundation will host Salina’s eighth annual Match Madness giving day on Thursday, March 21, 2019. On this day, donations to any of the 72 participating charities will be matched up to 50%. All donations will go to the organization’s endowed fund held at the Greater Salina Community Foundation. These funds are permanently invested to produce a steady stream of income charities can count on every year, which eases the pressure to raise annual funds. Every gift to a nonprofit’s endowed fund will be matched up to 50% with a cash grant. This year, $150,000 in[...]