The Lyndhurst Foundation is positioned to resume grantmaking as early as this fall following the completion of a comprehensive strategic planning process and the adoption of a new mission statement, officials said.
Accompanying the mission is a list of eight focus areas of community life that will help target the foundation’s grant activity over the next several years, it was stated.
According to Lyndhurst President, Bruz Clark, the Lyndhurst staff has begun to research prospective grantees involved with the focus areas: education, conservation, arts, culture, economy, urban design and development, neighborhood revitalization, and physical health.
The Lyndhurst staff will seek to identify and interview candidate organizations and invite them to submit proposals that are aligned with the foundation’s programmatic goals and interests. Unsolicited grant proposals will not be accepted. “We look forward to exploring promising partnerships that empower significant and enduring improvements in our city and enhance collaboration, connectivity and quality of life throughout the neighboring tri-state region,” said Mr. Clark.
The new mission statement says that the foundation “identifies and invests in initiatives, institutions, people and programs that contribute to the long-term livability and resilience of the greater Chattanooga region.” Mr. Clark said the regional language is important. “There is no question that our future quality of life will depend on our ability to think and act as a region, whether we’re talking about conservation, education or economic growth,” he said.
An addendum to the mission statement notes that the foundation hopes to have a positive influence on the region’s living, working, playing, learning, movement, fuel and stewardship. “Collectively, those activities will have a great deal to do with what our region looks and feels like ten years from now,” said Mr. Clark.
The release of the mission statement and giving priorities marks the completion of Lyndhurst’s organizational transition that began several years ago when the descendants of John T. Lupton and his sister, Elizabeth Lupton Davenport, decided to establish individual foundations in their respective communities. In an extraordinary gesture, they agreed to sustain Lyndhurst and hand oversight to a new board of trustees. That group was appointed in early 2011, and they have been working to identify the foundation’s priorities over the course of their past four board meetings.
Foundation board chairman Rob Taylor emphasized the remarkable generosity of the predecessor trustees. “It’s hard to imagine a more wonderful gift to our community than to have the former trustees leave Lyndhurst in place to continue its contributions to our region’s quality of life,” Mr. Taylor said.
With the formation of the individual family foundations, the Lyndhurst budget will be smaller than it has been during the previous grant cycle. Mr. Clark estimated that the annual grant budget for the next several years will be around $4.5 million.
The Lyndhurst Mission Statement
The Lyndhurst Foundation identifies and invests in initiatives, institutions, people and programs that contribute to the long-term livability and resilience of the greater Chattanooga region.
The Foundation will accomplish this mission by focusing its efforts on education, conservation, arts, culture, economy, urban design and development, neighborhood revitalization, and physical health. The intent is to have a positive influence on our region’s:
- Living – how we create thriving communities that are unique, desirable, economically viable, and of enduring quality;
- Working – how we foster robust and innovative job creation;
- Playing – how we create ways in which we can relax, unwind, compete and otherwise enjoy our leisure time;
- Learning – how we prepare our children and ourselves to understand and relate to the world around us and to meet the demands of the workplace;
- Movement – how we create modes of transportation for moving efficiently around our community in ways that conserve resources;
- Fuel – how we fuel our infrastructure, our buildings, our vehicles and feed ourselves in manners that are sensible and efficient;
- Stewardship – how we nurture a culture committed to conserving the natural resources that underpin our quality of life and our ability to accommodate future generations.