- Assets: $68,650,008 (2009)
- Grants Awarded: $61,820,540 (2009)
The AT&T Foundation was established in 1983 to function as the AT&T Corporation's grant-making arm. Mirian Graddick-Weir, who is the Executive Vice President of Human Resources for AT&T Corporation, chairs the Foundation and is responsible for determining its philanthropic priorities in three principal areas: Education; Arts and Culture; and Civic and Community Service.
According to its mission statement, “The AT&T Foundation invests globally in projects that are at the intersection of community needs and AT&T's business interests. Emphasis is placed on programs that serve the needs of people in communities where AT&T has a significant business presence, initiatives that use technology in innovative ways, and programs in which AT&T employees are actively involved as contributors or volunteers."
AT&T grants are frequently earmarked to finance technology designed for use in education programs -- as the Foundation puts it, to promote "collaboration among educational institutions to share resources, increase efficiencies, and reduce costs."
The AT&T Foundation's self-descriptions and stated objectives emphasize the importance of racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity as a consideration in its grant-making decisions. Reasoning from the premise that the United States is a nation rife with discrimination against nonwhite minorities, the Foundation directs fully 50 percent of its philanthropy to predominantly nonwhite organizations; Hispanic and African American beneficiaries garner the most support. The Foundation states that its commitment to promoting "educational opportunities for diverse populations is reflected in [its] support for the United Negro College Fund, the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, and the American Indian College Fund." "We have devoted special efforts," adds the Foundation, "to advance the participation of women and underrepresented minorities in the fields of science and engineering."
In the field of arts and culture, the AT&T Foundation concentrates its philanthropy "on the work of living artists and on extending the availability of the arts to a wider audience." This is especially true for minority artists. "Diversity,” the Foundation re-emphasizes, “is a core value at AT&T. For more than a decade we have actively supported the presentation of works by women and artists of diverse cultures so that these works may reach a wider audience."
In the realm of civic and community service, the AT&T Foundation supports the Children's Defense Fund and its Student Leadership Network for Children. Designed to help create the leftist activists of the future, this program features a national network of young adults (aged 18-30) who teach "a new generation of leaders eager to serve, empower, and advocate for positive social change through community service and child advocacy."
Among the AT&T Foundation's recent grantees are the following organizations: the Aspen Institute; the Brookings Institution; the Center for Community Change; the Children's Defense Fund; the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation; the Council on Foundations; the Earth Day Network; the Greenlining Institute; Human Rights Campaign; the Izaak Walton League of America; the League of United Latin American Citizens; the Mexican American Legal Defense & Education Fund; the Ms. Foundation for Women; the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy; the National Council of La Raza; National Public Radio (NPR); the National Urban League; the National Women's Law Center; the Natural Resources Defense Council; the Progressive Policy Institute; Public Broadcasting Service (PBS); the Puerto Rican Legal Defense & Education Fund; the Tides Foundation and the Tides Center; and the World Resources Institute.
To view a list of additional noteworthy grantees of the AT&T Foundation, click here.
(Information on grantees and monetary amounts courtesy of The Foundation Center, GuideStar, ActivistCash, the Capital Research Center and Undue Influence)