Edna McConnell Clark and Others Launch $1B Initiative Providing Long-Term, Unrestricted Funding

Tuesday, February 2, 2016
Edna McConnell Clark and Others Launch $1B Initiative Providing Long-Term, Unrestricted Funding
The Edna McConnell Clark Foundation (EMCF) and nine other donors announced a new investment inititative called Blue Meridian Partners, which uses collaborative-funding model to meet the challenges of today's world. Blue Meridian Partners will invest at least $1 billion in high-performance nonprofits that are poised to have truly national impact for economically disadvantaged children and youth.
Private funders have worked together to marshal resources of this scale in areas such as global health and land conservation. But this level of concentration has rarely been attempted or achieved to help nonprofits in the dramatically undercapitalized field serving disadvantaged children and youth in the U.S.
Blue Meridian Partners is being incubated at EMCF and chaired by Stanley Druckenmiller, whose investment in and chairmanship of the Harlem Children’s Zone has been an inspiration to me and many others. 
Nancy Roob, President and Chief Executive Officer of the EMCF, will serve as CEO of the venture, in addition to her existing responsibilities at EMCF. Chuck Harris and Woody McCutchen, of EMCF, will serve as Managing Directors of Blue Meridian Partners, supported by colleagues Kelly Campbell and William Foster from the Bridgespan Group.
Blue Meridian Partners has secured $750 million toward our goal of investing at least $1 billion to help high-performance nonprofits achieve much greater scale.
Six General Partners, listed in alphabetical order, have committed $50 million or more:
  • The Ballmer Group, Philanthropy
  • The Edna McConnell Clark Foundation
  • Stanley and Fiona Druckenmiller
  • The Duke Endowment (with a focus on North Carolina and South Carolina)
  • George Kaiser Family Foundation (with a focus on Tulsa, Oklahoma)
  • The Samberg Family Foundation. 
Four Limited Partners intend to commit $10 million or more:
  • The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
  • The JPB Foundation
  • The David and Lucile Packard Foundation
  • The Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation. 
Blue Meridian’s investments will be big bets. They will be flexible, unrestricted, long-term (5-10 years), tied to performance, and total up to $200 million for each grantee. They will help grantees to expand their impact directly, by allowing them to strengthen their work, grow and serve greater numbers of youth, as well as indirectly, by helping them increase their influence on the child welfare, educational, judicial, and other systems that affect children’s lives.