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Every journey has a
turning point.
Turning points often appear as obstacles, unbidden,
forcing you to
choose a new path.
The choices you make the turns you take, can have a lifelong effect on you and those around you. And at the end of the path, you just might find that the obstacle has become an opportunity.

Dear Friends, Donors, and Partners,

I think it is safe to say that no one foresaw the extraordinary events of 2020. Each challenge became a turning point, an opportunity to think critically and act decisively to find new ways to address escalating community needs. The decisions were not always easy; the clear path was not always obvious. Fortunately, we were not alone on our journey.

Here at the Area Foundation, we say Stronger Together all the time. There is a good reason for it.

In 2020, there was simply no way we could have mobilized the financial resources and human capital to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and social justice without the collaboration of a multitude of philanthropic partners, both within and beyond the Area Foundation. The generous spirit of the San Antonio community was on display during these tumultuous times, and we are humbled and grateful to serve as trusted advisor, supporter, and collaborative partner in philanthropy.


We were blessed to have a cadre of great leaders interested in helping the community. A special thanks to Harvey Najim and the Harvey E. Najim Charitable Foundation, David Rogers and the H. E. Butt Foundation, the Nancy Smith Hurd Foundation, and Chris Martin and the United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County for their willingness to lead, work, fund, and believe in this transformational relief fund.

The COVID-19 Response Fund was launched on March 20, 2020. Hosted by the Area Foundation and jointly managed with United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County, the Fund raised $6.4 million through the tremendous generosity of hundreds of individual donors and dozens of foundations, businesses, and civic institutions who rallied in support of our community during this crisis.

These funds were distributed to more than 200 regional nonprofits in a rapid-cycle process advanced by our Community Engagement and Impact (CEI) team. The average award size was $28,137, and grants were prioritized for organizations serving 17 of San Antonios lowest-income zip codes.

The COVID-19 Response Fund focused its grantmaking in the areas of social services, business and employment, food security, and shelter. We intentionally aligned with Mayor Ron Nirenbergs key focus areas to amplify and coordinate philanthropic and public investments to address the critical needs of San Antonians. The Area Foundation also jointly invested with the City of San Antonio and United Way in providing temporary childcare access subsidies.

Donor Advised Funds (DAFs) hosted at the Area Foundation recommended an additional $7 million in direct grants to 248 nonprofits, and 95% of all DAF giving in response to COVID-19 stayed in Bexar County.

Just-In-Time Capacity Building AND Online Resources

Fortunately for the hundreds of nonprofit professionals the Area Foundation serves through our trainings and classes, we upgraded our IT infrastructure before the pandemic struck. Working remotely since March 2020, our Learning and Development Department staff readily pivoted to online learning opportunities. In 2020, we offered 77 courses and more than 2,000 participants signed up.

We delivered timely programs and free community sessions on topics such as: Leadership in Times of Transition, Communicating Effectively in Remote Environments, Lead by Example: Sustaining Ourselves, Engaging Employees in Remote Environments, and Brave New World: Returning to Work. Also, through a partnership with Candid, the Area Foundation offered free, online access for all area nonprofits to the Foundation Directory Online the most exhaustive and up-to-date database on grant makers


The COVID-19 pandemic fostered many opportunities for us to engage more deeply with donors and supporters within and beyond the Area Foundation. Throughout the year, we delivered well-attended philanthropic briefings to internal donors and volunteers on COVID-19 and on topics such as corporate social responsibility. We engaged a host of civic and business leaders through strategic conversations and with organizations as varied as Rotary, Humana, and Vistage.

The Area Foundation contributed to the Mayors Taskforce on Workforce Development serving as a key partner. This taskforce was pivotal to the development of and advocacy for Proposition B, which was approved by San Antonio voters in the November election. The initiative, SA Ready to Work, funded by a one-eighth-cent sales tax, will grow job training programs, scholarships, and emergency financial assistance for up to 40,000 residents caught in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.


The Area Foundation provided a start-up grant to the Family Independence Initiative (now UpTogether) which fostered partnerships with several local funders to place earned income directly into the hands of working families. San Antonio is now one of only a dozen sites across the nation to deploy this innovative and proven program which provides access to capital and fuels family-driven solutions. Alongside other local partners, the Area Foundation invested in the launch of Get Shift Done for San Antonio and neighboring communities. The program coordinates, schedules, and pays adversely affected hourly workers in the hospitality industry to work paid shifts for organizations such as the San Antonio Food Bank. It helps food service workers who lost their paychecks and provides immediate support to nonprofits stretched in providing food service to people in need.

The Area Foundation partnered with United Way, H. E. Butt Foundation, and LISC San Antonio on a weekly survey to more than 100 nonprofits to assess real-time community needs and engage donors on the most impactful investments. Our approach on the highest-level poverty zip codes in Bexar County illuminated sound and equitable approaches for our philanthropic partners and influenced their grantmaking.

These are just a few of the highlights featured in our 2020 impact report. You will learn more about our commitment and our work to mobilize philanthropy, lead in the community, and operate with excellence. Thanks to your partnership, we can continue to serve our community’s needs today, while building a better tomorrow for all who call our region home.

With gratitude,

Marjie French, CEO, San Antonio Area Foundation

“There is very little that the…Foundation does that doesn’t influence most of our lives…and certainly mine.”

— Mary Rose Brown, Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at NuStar Energy, who served on the COVID-19 Response Fund advisory committee.

“I have volunteered in the nonprofit space for more than three decades, and I have never seen such an efficient operation..”

— Aaronetta Pierce

“You don’t have to be a millionaire to make an investment in a fund. Instead, it’s the kind of person who believes in the community and be able to want to assist others.”

— Janie Barrera
[ Be a catalyst. ]
COVID-19 Response Fund
* Read Poem

Quarantine Is A Cheetah

Quarantine is a cheetah
because the cases of people who are
getting the virus
Are coming in fast. People can’t see
Their family because of the virus.
Quarantine makes me feel like
I can’t do anything anymore.
I want to outrun this cheetah,
Be grateful for seafood every Friday
And for people who recover from Covid.

— Olivia S., 5th Grade

A crisis compels you to
be a catalyst for change,
An unprecedented crisis necessitated unprecedented levels of giving. The San Antonio Area Foundation was there to build partnerships, raise funds, and provide data-driven, targeted funding of nearly $6.5 million through the COVID-19 Response Fund. In addition, Donor Advised Funds recommended more than $7 million in direct grants to nonprofits serving on the front lines of the pandemic.
while remaining a safety net for those who
can’t wait for that change,
One gift card recipient was a single parent who lost her job due to COVID-19. She is raising her 10-year-old son and was concerned about their limited food supply and having to wait 12 days for their SNAP benefits. When she learned she would be receiving a gift card, she was so appreciative and thanked the Resident Services Coordinator and the agencies involved with helping her family. She stated that with the gift card she would be able to purchase much needed groceries.
» Merced Housing Texas


The foundation of our health and safety is a decent place to live. When the COVID-19 crisis pushed many in our community to the brink of homelessness, Merced Housing Texas, which focuses on advocating for and providing affordable housing opportunities, was there to help. And the COVID-19 Fund was there to help Merced by providing a $50,000 grant. Kristin Davila, Merced’s President and Executive Director, reports that the agency used half of the grant to cover its Resident Services Program for April. The other half came in the form of $250 gift cards for residents living at one of the agency’s apartment campuses.


One of the many devastating effects of the pandemic has been an increase in domestic violence. The Bexar County Family Justice Center, a critical service provider to victims of domestic violence, had to find a way to remain open. This was no easy feat, given that it is typically an in-person, walk-in program. Before the pandemic, the Area Foundation had already begun the transition to trust-based philanthropy allowing organizations to focus on their mission and adjust or apply the grant dollars where they were needed most. This pivot to operational funding enabled the Bexar County Family Justice Center to apply the needed funds to provide crisis intervention and support services to a larger-than-normal client base.

“It is so hard to take the chance to accuse someone when you know their next step is to kill you. You feel powerless and desperate. The Family Justice Center’s services helped me to have courage. Today I am safe. I have been able to carry on with my beautiful life. I am able to see my people without being terrified. I just want to express my gratitude to all of you because you help me feel safe and protected.”
» Bexar County Family Justice Center
providing others a moment to rest,
take a breath, and then
keep moving forward.
The people that SAMMinistries serves struggle during normal circumstances to maintain stability. The COVID-19 pandemic amplified vulnerabilities around such issues as food insecurity, rental assistance, access to hygiene, cleaning supplies, and transportation. Those living in transitional housing lost many outlets to socialize and simply let kids expend their energy. Generous funding helped alleviate these burdens, helping to keep households safe and healthy. It helped pay rent, late fees, and mortgages, making SAMMinistries a one-stop shop to address the housing needs of clients in financial crisis. One hundred percent of homeless prevention and rapid re-housing clients remained housed; 60 percent of transitional clients exited to permanent housing; and 98 percent of permanent supportive housing clients remained housed during the worst of the crisis.
[ Make an impact. ]
Grantmaking by the Numbers
* Read Poem

This Year

This year is as beautiful as a white rose.
This year is as bright as a shining red rose
as hot as the sun and as beautiful as a sunset
because this year is the most perfect year
to start over like a blue bonnet just blooming and
waiting to rebloom once again.

— Prestine T., 4th Grade

Here is the
impact we made
in 2020.
$1 Billion Total Assets Under Management
500+ Charitable Funds
$71.9 Million Total Grantmaking
$66.1 Million to nonprofits
$4.7 Million in scholarships
$1.1 Million in hardship grants
2,342 Total Nonprofit Grants
77 Nonprofit Programs and Classes Serving 2,016 Trainees
Annual Responsive
Supporting Organizations$5,168,063
Other Grants including all
hardship and disaster relief grants
COVID-19 Relief Fund$6,490,115
Donor Advised Funds (DAFs)
Direct Giving to Nonprofits
Turning points require
bold leadership,
We are proud to have been the bridge between those most able to give and those who most needed to receive. With community input, research and strategic planning, the San Antonio Area Foundation focused grantmaking and relief efforts on four Impact Areas.
1. Cultural Vibrancy $626,000
2. Livable and Resilient Communities $741,000
3. Youth Success $636,000
4. Successful Aging $545,000
Note: All figures are before final audit. Total Giving includes all scholarships, hardship grants, disaster relief grants, supporting organization grants, designated grants and interfund grants to the Area Foundation to redistribute in alignment with our mission and program initiatives. For the most updated information, visit
» San Anto Cultural Arts
creative thinking,


Our strategic investments and partnerships with arts and culture organizations in 2020 ensured that the brightness and vitality that makes San Antonio special were not dimmed. Quite the opposite. By keeping arts organizations up and running (often virtually), they could continue to provide emotional, intellectual, and creative lifelines to a broad range of audiences in need of community and cultural celebration.

Vital partnerships


The H. E. Butt Foundation co-invested with the SAAFdn in early-stage capacity building for three organizations: American Indians in Texas at the Spanish Colonial Missions, San Anto Cultural Arts and the Classical Music Institute. The Area Foundation partnered with the Ford Foundation to provide $100,000 to the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center in appreciation of its 36-year history as a home for San Antonio’s Latino artists and cultural traditions and as a means to strengthen the Guadalupe’s ability to work through and beyond the current crisis.

» Habitat for Humanity
and committed


The 2019 COSA Poverty Report put numbers to the high economic inequality, racial disparities, and residential segregation that continue to plague our city. The 2020 pandemic put faces and, too often, tragic outcomes to those numbers. As philanthropic leaders, we have taken a hard look at what it takes to build a thriving, connected, and resilient San Antonio where residents in every zip code can enjoy the best quality of life that our city offers.

Vital partnerships


Recognizing the challenges rooted in inequitable systems, and identifying the need to uplift the affordable housing and community development sector, the San Antonio Area Foundation partnered with LISC San Antonio to engage nonprofit executives in a pilot leadership development program supporting new and emerging leaders in the affordable housing arena. “Leading to Change: Building Equity in Community”, includes leadership training, racial equity and organizational culture skill-building, and executive coaching.

In a partnership with Metro Health to address health disparities, the Area Foundation awarded seven organizations grants in the amount of $6,717.86 to support COVID-19 response efforts in communities disproportionately impacted. Over 3,000 individuals received support between the months of December 2020 and March 2021.  Services focused on helping individuals meet their basic needs through food distribution, household and hygiene kits, financial assistance, and accessing healthcare.

» Good Samaritan Center
forging ahead,


The strength of our community lies in the success of our children. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, exposed the lingering inequities in our education system. In response, the San Antonio Area Foundation has invested in organizations who take on the challenge of giving every child an accessible pathway, from cradle to career, to achieve lifelong academic and personal success.

Vital partnerships

Vital partnerships

The Area Foundation with UP Partnership secured an $8 million commitment from Blue Meridian Partners to expand educational and economic opportunities grounded in equity and data-driven approaches. The project will provide support to youth development agencies, workforce programs, childcare, and leadership development programs that amplify our youth’s voice in the community.

The Area Foundation is involved in a city-wide effort to improve youth outcomes through out-of-school time programs. The initiative, known as Excel Beyond the Bell - San Antonio , convened 48 nonprofit organizations serving 80,000 area youth centered on building developmental relationships with youth, growing service capacity, and committing to an equitable recovery for all youth impacted by COVID-19.

The Area Foundation and UP Partnership offer organizations the opportunity to rethink many fundamental components of their operations, service delivery, and finances in the wake of the pandemic. RESET* is an organizational recovery framework designed to strengthen the capacity of organizations to navigate challenges. The RESET course launched August 2020 with a focus on organizational recovery, change management, program model improvements, and equity-centered data analysis to drive strategic decisions in uncertain times.

Reflect on the vision guiding your work
Evaluate the underlying needs of your community
Strengthen your program design
Educate your stakeholders
Transform how your organization learns

» San Antonio Oasis
Even when it feels
to do so.


The pandemic has severely affected all of us, but the impact has been even greater for older San Antonians. It’s not just health outcomes. Some older adults face challenges with social isolation, loneliness, transportation, food security, and mental health. We are all aging and the San Antonio

Area Foundation is committed to a community where older adults are respected, thrive, and enjoy connected lives. We are dedicated to Reframing Aging, a social change endeavor designed to change the publics’ perception of aging by empowering us to all live our best lives as we age.

Vital partnerships

Vital partnerships

In 2020, the Successful Aging and Living in San Antonio (SALSA) collective impact initiative built significant momentum. SALSA inspires its 38 multi-sector partners to develop a common agenda and implement agreed upon strategies and activities. Significant accomplishments for SALSA this year include:

• In partnership with WellMed Charitable Foundation, the creation, development, and distribution of the Family Caregiver Toolkit, in Spanish and English, to offer resources to spouses, family, and significant others who provide care for their loved ones.

• Training and launch of our community’s Reframing Aging Initiative. With training received from The Gerontological Society of America (GSA), who lead the national reframing aging initiative, SALSA trained and graduated 15 Reframing Aging Facilitators dedicated to using evidence-based, cutting edge communications tools and messages developed by FrameWorks Institute, and tailored for our community.  By changing the way that people talk and think about aging, we are setting the foundation for policies and practices that leverage the strengths and talents of older people, and systems that support well-being for all of us as we age.

• Co-authoring with City of San Antonio and Disability SA of a survey and report of the experiences of people with disabilities during COVID-19.

• Receiving a nomination for the Innovators in Aging award for unique and successful efforts to serve older Texans (Texas Health and Human Services).

Because turning back
is not an option.
With the second half of its 2019/20 theater season suspended, The Public Theater of San Antonio implemented remote theater arts programming to ensure the community had access to live professional theater experiences to increase the social and emotional well-being of individuals of all ages. By hosting virtual play readings, musical cabarets, instructional classes, and free youth programming, The Public was able to provide income opportunities for displaced performers and technical crew members, supplement youth educational theater arts programming in distance learning settings, and provide much-needed entertainment.
[ Embrace change. ]
Addressing Equity
* Read Poem

I Hope the New Year Is

I hope the new year is a happy color like yellow
I hope the new year is like the yellow on mac-n-cheese
I hope the new year is waving at everyone as long as it can
I hope the new year is slow like a sloth so we can enjoy
the good things about it.

— Breona C., 4th Grade

Together we can
face turning points,
Over the past five years, The San Antonio Area Foundation has activated its long-standing commitment to racial and social justice by implementing a strategic, data-driven approach to serving the community. This “equity-based decision-making” is the targeted investment of money and human capital to equip our most under-served residents to realize a quality of life filled with hope, good health, and opportunity.
while embracing
what matters most.
Over the past five years, The San Antonio Area Foundation has activated its long-standing commitment to racial and social justice by implementing a strategic, data-driven approach to serving the community. This “equity-based decision-making” is the targeted investment of money and human capital to equip our most under-served residents to realize a quality of life filled with hope, good health, and opportunity.
Words from former chairman of the board


I had many friends check in on me in the summer of 2020. Given everything going on at that time with racial unrest across the country, they just wanted to make sure I was doing OK. I appreciated their care and concern and let them know as much. But I was also honest with them – no, I told them. I have not been OK.

Following the deaths of George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks, Breonna Taylor, and a growing list of African Americans taken away from us far too young and far too soon, I cannot deny feeling personally impacted. It has taken a heavy emotional toll on me.

As Chairman of the Board of Directors of the San Antonio Area Foundation, I was responsible  —  along with my fellow board members  —  for overseeing the organization’s various programs and activities. Taking on societal ills such as racial injustice and inequity is not new for us  —  but making it an important part of our agenda moving forward is something we have a responsibility to do.

That is why we sent out an official organizational statement signed by me and Area Foundation CEO Marjie French delineating our stance against discrimination and injustice.

So, no, I am not OK. I cannot be OK when I reflect on our national climate as our country continues to grapple with its centuries-old racial reckoning. Institutional and systemic racism is still here with us, making its presence felt in all areas of society.

Yet this is not about me. It is about my beautiful grandchildren and countless other young African Americans like them. Will they grow up also fearing they will experience the scourge of racism we see rear its ugly head?

Can you imagine being afraid to call the police in a time of need? Can you imagine having to have the talk with your 10-year-old son just to make sure he knows how to properly respond to a police officer so that he can come home alive? People need to know this is still all too real in our country.

I cannot be silent at this time. I need to speak up. We simply cannot move forward without acknowledging the pain and suffering inflicted on the Black community  — indeed, many communities of color  —  without doing the challenging work to change the systems that have ushered such palpable inequities.

As Chairman of the Area Foundation Board in 2020, I personally witnessed generous and courageous leaders who have given of themselves over our organization’s 55-year history to effect change and to create a community where we can all thrive. There is no better time than now to ask ourselves what we can do to be part of the solution and how we can take ownership of our role as a community leader to address institutional racism and advance equity.

Change and improvement will not come overnight nor will it be an easy endeavor. But we have the brightest minds in the world, and I am confident we can indeed bring about meaningful change. The only way we can fail is to think we cannot succeed. Yet, we must succeed. Failure is simply not an option, at least not for me  —  my grandchildren’s lives are at stake.

Theodore (Theo) Guidry II, CPA

Chairman of the Board, SAAFdn, 2019-2020

Retired, Former Senior Vice President of Risk Management, Valero Energy Corporation

“I have volunteered in the nonprofit space for more than three decades, and I have never seen such an efficient operation.”

— Mary Rose Brown, Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at NuStar Energy, who served on the COVID-19 Response Fund advisory committee.
2020 demanded that we deepen our
community engagement

Addressing Equity

The urgency of addressing inequities, spurred by the murder of George Floyd, has driven the Area Foundation to provide additional new investments, partnerships, research, and advocacy supporting the African American and other marginalized communities to ensure that we recognize various marginalized communities are disproportionately impacted. Our path to achieving more equitable outcomes began by more intentionally focusing our annual responsive grantmaking on the city’s most distressed zip codes and most disproportionately impacted families.

“Where you were born, where you live, and the color of your skin, should not determine your life outcomes.”

— Marjie French, CEO
2020 demanded that we deepen our
community engagement


A clear understanding of a situation is the only way to achieve clear results. The San Antonio Area Foundation has partnered with CI:NOW and the San Antonio Area African American Community Fund to sponsor a first-of-its-kind report for Bexar County detailing key indicators within the African American community: population, education, employment and income, business and workforce development, health, housing, justice, and social issues. The report, to be released in autumn 2021, will be used to guide policy and future community investments in the African American community.

2020 demanded that we deepen our
community engagement


We assisted the fund and lead donors Cara and Brian Wright to establish a new charitable fund to provide free legal services for matters involving bail issues, law enforcement excessive use of force, racial discrimination, and voting rights.


We partnered with data analysis organization CI:NOW and the African American Fund to develop outreach strategies and collateral materials to target African American communities historically underrepresented in the U.S. Census. Additionally, we partnered COSA and Bexar County and five other organizations to ensure a complete count.


The Area Foundation also provided emergency and rapid response grants to multiple nonprofits who were connected with families disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 to continue to provide critical safety net and recovery services in the wake of a crisis.

San Antonio equity fellowship program


The San Antonio Equity Fellowship Program is a pilot transformational leadership program focused on bringing together African American and Latinx participants who are committed to constructively altering societal conditions toward fuller justice and equity for all. The San Antonio Area Foundation is pleased to offer this unique opportunity for personal and professional development as part of the Foundation’s commitment to equity work, capacity building of our nonprofit sector, and commitment to strengthen the leaders of nonprofit organizations in San Antonio.

The San Antonio Equity Fellowship Program will provide a series of leadership workshops to nonprofits in the four SAAFdn impact areas — Cultural Vibrancy, Livable and Resilient Communities, Youth Success, and Successful Aging in San Antonio — who are committed to social change, policy impact, and/or community improvement that serve communities of color throughout San Antonio.

The six-month nonprofit leadership program is focused on strengthening relationships from diverse communities of color. Applicants may be executive directors or senior program staff at their sponsoring organization. San Antonio Equity Fellowship Program will result in strengthened leadership for community impact, increased cross-cultural understanding, bolstered community collaboration to address pressing social issues, and a network of diverse leaders who will be able to call upon each other in the future.

» American Indians in Texas at the Spanish Colonial Missions
with clarity of purpose and a resolve to
find new solutions
to old problems.
As the country embarked on renewed racial reckoning ushered by the horrendous murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May 2020, the reverberations of growing social unrest were soon felt here in San Antonio. The community needed bona fide sources of leadership that could help tackle racial injustice and work toward establishing equity. The San Antonio Area African American Community Fund (SAAAACF), a charitable fund of the San Antonio Area Foundation, was repeatedly pointed out by News 4 WOAI, San Antonio Magazine, and national nonprofit circles as a go-to organization in the Alamo City. The organization has quietly but effectively advocated for the Alamo City’s Black community for more than a decade. “We want to be a major player,” said Bobby Blount, Chairman of the SAAAACF Board of Directors and a figure in the local educational scene, serving on the Board of Trustees of the Northside Independent School District. “People started looking around to see which organizations were willing to step up and we quickly realized that we needed to be more engaged, providing more leadership in the community.”
[ Have courage. ]
* Read Poem

Except this ONE: A free verse poem

I have no other fears
Except for this one
This strange, twisted thing
Isn’t all so fun
So I put it up high
Up on a shelf
The thing that I fear
Is fear itself
Why should we be scared
when we can feel great?
Was it something it did?
Maybe something it ate?

But it doesn’t have eyes
Nor a nose or a tongue
No body, no ears,
Certainly no lungs
Well, after all,
It doesn’t exist
At least not for me,
And it will not be missed

— Taylor B.

Change comes when you have the
courage to seize
an opportunity.


A conversation with a colleague about recognizing scholarship donors at our school caused me to reflect on my own experience  —  first as a scholarship recipient 25 years ago and now as someone who funds scholarships.

Eric Wilson’s full story

A conversation with a colleague about recognizing scholarship donors at our school caused me to reflect on my own experience  —  first as a scholarship recipient 25 years ago and now as someone who funds scholarships.

As scholarship donors, my husband and I could choose to bequeath gifts to help future students, or we could give now so that we have an opportunity to meet the people we’re helping. The conversation with my coworker along with my shared desire to meet our scholarship recipients made me think that I should reach out to those who helped me along my own academic journey.

Much has transpired since graduating from Judson High School in 1995 and then attending Texas A&M University with the help of a scholarship from the San Antonio Area Foundation. I feel it’s important to send an updated note of thanks to the Foundation to express my sincere gratitude for the impact that their gift had on my life and career. The Foundation scholarship helped me achieve my initial goal of earning my bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1998. The Foundation grant helped me graduate from college without the need for loans.

After graduation, I pursued a career in higher education, and I have enjoyed working for the Texas A&M University and Texas State University systems. The highlight of my career was having the opportunity to work in Qatar at Texas A&M University’s branch campus for eight and a half years. I was able to support the educational aspirations of Aggie engineers from over 20 different countries and travel extensively in my free time.

My experience of living, working, and traveling abroad has deepened my understanding for the need to embrace diversity and to include perspectives from underrepresented groups. My time abroad afforded me the opportunity to grow personally and professionally, preparing me for my current role as Assistant Dean for Accountability and Strategic Initiatives at Texas A&M’s School of Public Health.

My professional success began with the Foundation’s early investment in me. In turn, my husband and I have been able to fund several scholarships for students at Texas A&M, providing financial assistance to the next generation of professionals. None of this would have been possible had it not been in part for the Area Foundation.

Thank you again for the work you do to support future generations of students and thank you again for helping me pursue my dreams.

Eric Wilson

Assistant Dean for Accountability and Strategic Initiatives, Texas A&M School of Public Health

“Thank you again for the work you do to support future generations of students and thank you again for helping me pursue my dreams.”

— Eric
Change comes when you have the
courage to create
an opportunity.


Thanks to the generosity of our donors, the Area Foundation awarded $4.6M in support of 905 scholarship grants in 2020. The Area Foundation hosts more than 100 scholarship funds available for graduating high school students and current college students. Each fund has its own criteria based on the fund advisor’s interest. Some scholarships fund a specific area of study, a donor’s alma mater, or scholarships to students from a specific school.

- Alexes Salazar
   Harvey E. Najim Charitable Foundation Scholarship Fund

» Alexes Salazar Harvey E. Najim Charitable Foundation Scholarship Fund


“Thank you all so much for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to continue my pursuit in secondary education! I could not have done it without all of your help!”

- Katelyn R. Gudenau

Rapier Educational Foundation Scholarship

“Being a first-generation student is challenging and overwhelming, but as a recipient of the Whataburger Family Foundation Scholarship, you have given me the hope and confidence to continue to pursue my career in the healthcare field. More than anything, I am filled with gratitude.”

- Diana Herrera

Whataburger Family Foundation Scholarship

“The San Antonio Area Foundation has invested in me the same way I plan to invest in my community for the rest of my life. This scholarship for my education is just the first of many steps I’ll be taking to become a lawyer. I want to use my education for my people of San Antonio and my Latino community. I thank you the San Antonio Area Foundation for showing me that my future is worth investing in.”

- Isabella Garcia

John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation Scholarship

“The day I met the head of Women in Engineering at Notre Dame, my future was set. Thanks to the Brice and Theresa Moczygemba Scholarship, my dreams are now my reality!”

- Eleanor Zinsmeister

Brice & Teresa Moczygemba Engineering Scholarship Fund

“Thank you for allowing me to pursue my dream of being a nurse and a future nurse practitioner! Right now, I work on the front line of COVID-19, and I can’t wait to be able to do more to help people!”

- Eloy Garcia

Methodist Hospital Stone Oak Employee Scholarship Fund

Our turning point has made us a
stronger catalyst
for change,


Those lines shape the long-standing philosophy of a cherished local couple who may now be gone from our lives but whose legacy will live on for years to come through the dedicated work of their charitable fund.

Jack and Laura Richmond may not have been born and raised in San Antonio, but how lucky are we that they ended up settling here as their longtime adopted home? Certainly, those working in philanthropic circles are all the better to have had the honor of seeing many wonderful nonprofits benefiting from The Richmond Family Foundation.

“My father was always very proud of how generous this city is as a whole,” said their youngest son, Clay Richmond. “He wanted to contribute. He just wanted to help people and create opportunities to see them grow.”

The Richmonds were originally from Kansas, where Laura worked as an elementary school teacher while Jack rose as a manager for the phone company. Despite being business entrepreneurs, it was never about the bottom line for Jack and Laura. Far from it. The couple was always about giving back to their community, first by contributing to various causes and nonprofits and then starting their own philanthropic fund in 1998 at the Area Foundation.

“I think he wanted to more succinctly direct his giving where he thought organizations could have a positive influence on those they were serving,” Clay Richmond explained. “And the matching grants could be a launching pad for those organizations.”

Indeed, the matching aspect of The Richmond Family Foundation grants are what makes it unique. One nonprofit each year is selected to be eligible to receive $100,000 — as long as they raise the same amount or more on their own. The incentive has proven more than fruitful, given that on average participating nonprofits raise $180,000. In all, the Richmonds thus far have contributed $1.4 million to 14 San Antonio nonprofits. 2020’s recipient was Jewish Family Service of San Antonio. Talk about going beyond the minimum requirement — the agency raised $200,000 on its own, making the combined $300,000 infusion as the largest fundraiser in its history.

“It was a lifesaver as it allowed us to continue our services right as the pandemic hit, as well as start offering teletherapy for our counseling clients and provide home essentials for our homebound senior clients,” said Talli Dolge, CEO of Jewish Family Service.

Jack and Laura represent the type of quiet, no-nonsense philanthropy that is quintessentially altruistic — giving with no expected or assumed reciprocity. “They’re humble, not flashy. They are not in it for themselves. It’s not about them, but about the nonprofits they support,” Board Member and family friend Brad Parman offered. “It’s truly inspiring to watch.”

We should love each other — that means caring for our neighbors. Where those in mourning are comforted. Where the hungry are fed. Where the poor hear good news.

bringing all of our resources to bear as we
create a path toward
» Conjunto Hall of Famer Bene Medina teaches accordion with Conjunto Heritage Taller

Connecting the Dots

The Donor and Development Services team equips each donor with the tools they need to make informed decisions about where, how, and when to give. The San Antonio Area Foundation accepts a wide variety of assets and can facilitate even the most complex forms of giving. We partner with professional advisors to create highly effective approaches to charitable giving. We offer the maximum tax advantage for most gifts under state and federal law.

The Center for Corporate Philanthropy at the San Antonio Area Foundation, launched in 2020, hosted a virtual townhall for fundholders and key business leaders featuring Darryl Walker, President of the Ford Foundation. Mr. Walker provided keen insights on how corporate citizens could help lead a robust and equitable rebound for the nonprofit sector during and after the pandemic, as well as challenging the lack of diversity on corporate boards.

“The San Antonio Area Foundation’s role is to connect the dots. It’s to be able to see people who have resources and where their wishes are and then connect those wishes of making our world a better place with the right non-profit.”

—Janie Barrera

Your compassion, amplified.

Donor Advised Funds (DAFs) are donor-directed charitable funds administered by the Area Foundation, which provided an additional $7 million in grants made directly to nonprofits impacted by COVID-19, while also contributing $1.2 million to the COVID-19 Response Fund. Additionally, Donor Advised Fund grants directly supporting nonprofit organizations totaled $42.3 million for 2020.

DAF grantmaking grew 33% in the first and second quarters of 2020 compared to the same time in 2019, with 95% of all giving in response to COVID-19 staying in Bexar County. This sharp increase is directly attributable to independent donors’ urgent concern for nonprofits working on the front lines of the crisis.

“One of the major assets of the Foundation is that what we care about is cared for forever.”

—Aaronetta Pierce
a new, better
San Antonio for all.
Will you take that
journey with us?
Then, when the next turning point
comes, we can face it with confidence
and hope.



Theo Guidry, Board Chair
Gen. James T. (Tom) Hill, 2021 Chair Elect
Michelle R. Scarver, CPA/PFS, Treasurer
Alex Perez, Secretary
James D. (Darryl) Byrd
Luis de la Garza
Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler
Lorenzo Gomez, III
Sarah Harte, Past Board Chair
Blake Hastings
John Hayes, Past Board Chair
David Komet
Adena Williams Loston, Ph.D.
Brad Parman
Jane Phipps
Marie Smith, Past Board Chair
R. Bruce Tilley
Harry W. Wolff, Jr.

The San Antonio Area Foundation would like to thank outgoing directors for their outstanding service on our board through 2020:

Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler
Luis de la Garza
Theo Guidry
John Hayes
Jane Phipps
Marie Smith


The Visionary Circle Legacy Society recognizes those who, through their estate or financial plans, ensure that the causes they care about today will have support in the future. While we honor these individuals in our Visionary Circle who are listed below, we also appreciate the gifts of those who wish to remain anonymous.

Bill Asher and Molly Asher

James Ardoin, Jr. and Priscilla Hill-Ardoin

Isabelle Badouh

Elsa G. Barshop

Jamie L. Barshop

Arthur H. Bayern

Glenn Bernard and Gisele Bernard

Dr. Charles Brady, III and Teresa Llanas

Lila R. Brehm Charitable Lead Trust

Dee Ann Bridges

Dr. Willis Brown, Jr. and Elizabeth A. Brown

Calvin Buchholtz, Jr.

Lee Cabibi and Christine Schmid Cabibi

Sue Caldwell

Barbara Candler

Gary and Pam Chambers

Lee Childress and Cecilia Childress

Tom Christal and Lyn Christal

Dr. Pamela Christian

Dr. Elizabeth D. Conklyn

Phyllis Conrad

Evelyn Cooper

Rose Marie Cutting

Albert DeLauro and Claire DeLauro

John Demsey

Heather C. Diehl and J. F. Bierlein

Sue Dodson

Seymour Dreyfus and Jane Dreyfus

Randell L. Drum

Francis Bowie Duncan, II and Helen Duncan

Carl I. Duncan

Howard D. Engleman and Dr. Lorna L. Engleman

Dr. Robert M. Esterl, Jr.

Dr. Sylvia P. Fernandez and Raul Fernandez

Colonel Stephen R. Fischer, Ph.D., USAF (Ret.)

Bertie Frank

Pauline S. Freberg

T. Paul Furukawa, Ph.D

Alicia Z. Galvan

Richard and Antonia Goldsmith

John S. Gutzler and Sarah Harte

Raymond Hannigan and Patricia Hannigan

Jack Hansen

Dr. Dwight Henderson

John Hill and Caroline Hill

Dr. Linda J. Holley and Lon Taylor

David Holmes and Rebecca Holmes

Sterlin Holmesly

Dr. Penn Jackson and Dr. Carlayne Jackson

Dr. Norman L. Jacobson

Rosemary Jasso

Roquey and Anna Jobes

Curtis R. Johnson

Concha Jones

Wister H. Kampmann

Xonia Kargl

William Kromer

Anne C. Larme

James Lazarus, Ph.D. and Dr. Susan L. Gershenhorn

James Letchworth and Kirk Swanson

Dr. Ruth Lofgren

Colonel Lawrence Luken (Ret.) and Margaret Luken

Meredith McGuire, Ph.D.

Dr. Laura McKieran

Marlene Merritt

Brice Moczygemba and Teresa Moczygemba

Dr. John V. Mumma and Judy Jay Mumma

Henry R. Muñoz, III

Keith Orme and Pat Orme

Sean Oslin

Major General Susan L. Pamerleau, USAF (Ret.)

David W. Pasley and Elizabeth G. Pasley

Donna Parker

Brad J. Parman

Philip Peacock and Sallie Steves Peacock

Fred Pfeiffer and Ann Maria Pfeiffer

Robert Phipps and Jane Phipps

Claire Pronovost

Charles Puls and Jenny Puls

Mary Quandt

Edwin P. Riley, Jr.

Noel Robin

Leonel Rodriguez and Gerry Frost

Chickie Rose

Larry W. Rosenberger, Jr. and Diana Rosenberger

Nancy Russell

Dr. Deanna Schupbach

Patricia S. Scott

Donald Schmidt and Susan Kent

Joseph A. Soane

Doris Barshop Spector

Sue Spellman

Kevin Steingart and Karen Steingart

John T. Suggs, Jr. and Karen Suggs

Kathy Toyoda

Denise Trujillo

Robert Watson and Suzanne Watson

Dorothy R. Wilson

Juanita Wittmer