The Board of the Mexican American Civil Rights Institute (MACRI) and the San Antonio Area Foundation are proud to announce a $500,000 grant award from the Mellon Foundation’s Humanities in Place Program to expand MACRI’s organizational capacity and development of its visitor center. The two-year grant will be administered by the San Antonio Area Foundation.

Founded in 2019 with seed funding from the City of San Antonio, MACRI introduced virtual programming and an inaugural virtual exhibit during the pandemic. The Mellon funds will support MACRI’s transition to a hybrid model of programming to maintain its national virtual audience, while also establishing a physical location for in-person exhibits and programs in San Antonio. Additionally, the Mellon Funds will allow MACRI to expand its staff and increase its program offerings.

“We are very excited about our forthcoming visitor center, which will allow us to showcase our growing collections, develop and host exhibits that will then travel to other places, and host hybrid in-person and live streamed programs. We would not be able to do this without the additional staff that the Mellon grant will make possible. This grant is a gamechanger for MACRI,” said Sarah Zenaida Gould, Executive Director of MACRI.

“San Antonio is the largest Latino-majority city in the U.S. and the birthplace of over two dozen Mexican American civil rights organizations as well as dozens of Mexican American civil rights leaders. We are pleased to be part of ensuring MACRI’s success in San Antonio, as they are positioned to expand the national narrative of civil rights to include the many struggles and contributions of Mexican Americans, while promoting our city as the cradle of a national movement for civil rights,” said Marjie French, CEO of the San Antonio Area Foundation.

About the Mexican American Civil Rights Institute

Founded in 2019, the Mexican American Civil Rights Institute (MACRI), formerly the National Institute of Mexican American History of Civil Rights, is the only national organization dedicated to collecting and sharing Mexican American civil rights history. For more information, visit

About the San Antonio Area Foundation

The San Antonio Area Foundation (SAAFdn) has served as the city’s community-giving headquarters for nearly 60 years, growing to become one of the top 20 community foundations in the nation. The Area Foundation helps donors achieve their charitable goals supporting our community’s greatest needs, managing more than 500 charitable funds nearly $1 billion in assets. Beyond serving hundreds of nonprofit organizations every year through training and grantmaking, where total impact exceeded $71 million in 2020, the Area Foundation operates a strong student scholarship program. Over $37 million has been invested in our future leaders since 1969 through more than 100 scholarship funds. Learn more at

About the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation 

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is the nation’s largest supporter of the arts and humanities. Since 1969, the Foundation has been guided by its core belief that the humanities and arts are essential to human understanding. The Foundation believes that the arts and humanities are where we express our complex humanity, and that everyone deserves the beauty, transcendence, and freedom that can be found there. Through our grants, we seek to build just communities enriched by meaning and empowered by critical thinking, where ideas and imagination can thrive.