Our Mission ...helping donors achieve their charitable goals for the greater benefit of the community

Our Values



We invest in continuous learning and personal development.

We exceed expectations in our service to others.

We do our best. We do it right. We do it now.



We work with humility, energy, and joy.

We explore and embrace new ideas.

We value and celebrate one another.



We are honest, trustworthy and transparent.

We honor our donor’s wishes.

We are accountable for everything we do. 



We collaborate to serve and build community.

We invest to create positive change.

We practice inclusion & diversity. 

Helping the community

Making an impact:

Elementary School Girl At The Front Of The School Bus Queue

Our History

2020: Fifty-six years of Area Foundation history

The faces of our more than fifty-year history represent remarkable generosity and impact. Since our founding in 1964, we have adapted and grown, but our work with donors to address the San Antonio area’s needs through grants, programs, scholarships and training has remained constant.

Faces Collage

1964: San Antonio Area Foundation Established with Honorarium Gift

Mannie Goldsmith sought to create a memorial to his brother, Nat, to honor his wisdom, compassion, and love for San Antonio. With guidance from Nat’s son, Richard C. Goldsmith, Mannie made a gift of $100,000 payable in $10,000 a year for 10 years that ultimately established the San Antonio Area Foundation.

1978: First Major Gift Received

A $2.9 million bequest from Semp Russ was the turning point in the Area Foundation's young history.

1981: First Paid Executive Director Hired

Katherine Netting Folbre 

1996: Assets Reach $50 million

The Area Foundation reached a first with $50 million in assets.

2000: Assets Reach $100 Million

The Area Foundation reached another major financial milestone with $100 million in assets.

2020: Assets Surpass $1 Billion Mark

Through a transformational gift from an anonymous donor, the Area Foundation surpassed $1 billion in assets under management. The new gift will double the scholarships awarded to deserving students starting in the 2021-2022 school year!

What is a Community Foundation?

Community foundations place the power of philanthropy with everyday citizens, all of whom share a common interest: improving the quality of life in our community.

More than one hundred years ago, in 1914, the community foundation concept was born in Cleveland, Ohio, giving rise to a new type of philanthropy, a new way of participating in community and a new vision for the future. Community foundations turn collective giving into big impact. Community foundations give everyone access to the power of endowment. Community foundations are devoted to the people and places you love.

The San Antonio Area Foundation is one of more than 800 community foundations in the United States.

We invite people with a vision and a passion for community to create something together- for good, forever. Community foundations collectively manage more than $48 billion in assets and make grants of approximately $4.5 billion a year to improve life in their communities.

Community foundations build endowment funds that benefit the community forever and help create personal legacies.

When you contribute to the endowment managed by the San Antonio Area Foundation, your gift is invested over time. Earnings from your fund are used to make grants addressing community needs. Your gift—and all future earnings from your gift—is a permanent source of community capital, helping to do good work today and in the future. This philanthropic model has spread beyond U.S. borders, with approximately 1,800 place-based foundations established in 68 countries.

The San Antonio Area Foundation is among the best in the nation.

We are proud to be confirmed in compliance with National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations, meeting the nation’s highest philanthropic standards for operational quality, integrity and accountability. The National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations Program requires community foundations to document our policies for donor services, investments, grantmaking and administration. The Standards are audited and accredited through a peer-review process.