Non-profit

Chicago Community Trust (CCT)

Website:

cct.org/

Location:

CHICAGO, IL

Tax ID:

36-2167000

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2017):

Revenue: $508,813,283
Expenses: $329,251,240
Assets: $2,691,371,233

Formation:

1951

Type:

Left-of-center 501(c)(3) Donor Advised Fund

President:

Helene D. Gale

Chicago Community Trust (CCT) is a left-of-center community foundation and provider of donor-advised funds that provides grants to left-of-center and liberal organizations, social programs, and nonprofits primarily in the Chicago city area, but also nationwide. The organization is one of the largest providers of donor-advised funds in the United States and makes and handles hundreds of millions of dollars in grants annually. As of 2015, the organization was the 36th largest foundation by total giving in the country by total assets, 34th by total giving, and 27th by gifts received. [1]

History

CCT was founded in 1915 by Albert W. Harris, the president of Harris Trust and Savings Bank in Chicago. Upon its founding, Harris made a $200,000 donation to the organization, an amount that would be equal to around $5 million in 2019 dollars. [2]

Board of Directors and Staff

Helene D. Gayle is the president and CEO of the Chicago Community Trust. Appointed in 2017, Gayle has shifted the focus of the organization from general philanthropic ventures to a strategy more focused on race-conscious identity politics and other liberal issues. Gayle previously served as the president of CARE, an international disaster relief organization, and serves on the boards of directors for a number of organizations including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, one of the largest private foundations in the United States that tends to fund left-of-center entities; the Brookings Institution, a center-left think tank based in Washington, D.C.; and New America, a left-of-center think tank. [3]

Grantmaking

The Chicago Community Trust has a history of making grants to left-of-center and liberal organizations which cover a broad array of issues. This organization gives primarily to other organizations in Chicago and Illinois but also makes grants to national and international organizations.

Arabella Advisors Network

Chicago Community Trust makes grants to a number of organziations managed by Arabella Advisors, a large for-profit philanthropic consultant that supports liberal issue campaigns. In 2018, the organization made a $242,000 grant to New Venture Fund, a large liberal fiscal sponsor and grantmaking fund managed by Arabella which advocates for liberal positions a number of issues. The organization also made a $155,000 grant to Windward Fund, an Arabella-managed organization which mainly advocates for environmentalist issues. [4]

Identity Politics

Chicago Community Trust has made a number of donations to organizations which advocate for left-wing identity-politics approaches to policy issues. The organization made a $536,250 grant to the ACLU Foundation, an arm of the ACLU, one of the largest social-liberal advocacy organizations in the United States. ACLU Foundation funds and engages in a number of left-of-center and liberal projects.

CCT also made a $125,000 grant to the Illinois Branch of National Black Fund, a left-of-center organization which funds projects claiming to combat alleged racial segregation in Illinois. [5]

Abortion

CCT makes a large number of grants annually to organizations which push for more lenient abortion regulation in the United States. In 2018, the organization made a $10,447 grant to the Center for Reproductive Rights, a large organization which advocates for legislation on a state level which would legalize most abortions including late-term cases. The organization also made a $172,000 grant to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), an organization which carries out and advocates for abortions in the United States, and $174,402 to Planned Parenthood of Illinois, the Illinois state-level branch of PPFA. [6]

Immigration

The organization also makes grants to organization in Illinois and the United States which advocate for more liberal immigration policy, with some going so far as to call for functionally open borders. The organization made a $35,000 grant to the Arab American Action Network,  an organization which focuses on left-of-center immigration issues; $40,000 to Centro de Trabajadores Unidos, a left-of-center organization which focuses on labor issues associated with illegal immigrants; and $245,000 to Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, a left-of-center organization which focuses on obtaining state-level rights for undocumented workers including state identification cards for illegal immigrants, adoption of “sanctuary city” policies, and the provision of tax incentives for illegal immigrants. [7]

Environmentalism

CCT also makes a number of grants annually to environmentalist organizations. In 2018 the organization made a $52,250 grant to Earthjustice, a left-of-center environmental law organization; $24,750 to the Greenpeace Fund, the fundraising arm of one of the largest and most vocal left-of-center environmentalist organizations in the United States; $117,500 to Environmental Defense Fund, a left-of-center advocacy group which pushes an alarmist agenda concerning global warming; and $18,700 to the Sierra Club Foundation, one of the largest environmentalist advocacy groups in the United States. [8]

Funding

The Chicago Community Trust is one of the largest organizations in the United States by assets and held more than $3 billion as of 2018. The organization is also one of the largest in the United States in terms of grantmaking. In 2018, it reported making $357,097,627 in grants to other organizations. [9]

References

  1. “Foundation Stats: Largest Foundations By Total Giving.” Guidestar. Accessed February 22, 2020. http://data.foundationcenter.org/#/foundations/all/nationwide/top:assets/list/2015. ^
  2. “Albert Wadsworth Harris and Kemah Farm Financier, Philanthropist, and Great Lover of Animals.” Love, Michelle Bie. Accessed February 23, 2020. http://wmsbayhistory.ipage.com/uploads/3/4/6/8/34688241/albert_wadsworth_harris_website_article.pdf. ^
  3. “Staff Profiles: Helene D. Gayle.” Chicago Community Trust. Accessed February 23, 2020. https://www.cct.org/people/dr-helene-gayle/. ^
  4. 2018 IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax: Chicago Community Trust. Schedule I, Part II: grants and other assistance paid to organizations and domestic governments. ^
  5. 2018 IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax: Chicago Community Trust. Schedule I, Part II: grants and other assistance paid to organizations and domestic governments. ^
  6. 2018 IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax: Chicago Community Trust. Schedule I, Part II: grants and other assistance paid to organizations and domestic governments. ^
  7. 2018 IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax: Chicago Community Trust. Schedule I, Part II: grants and other assistance paid to organizations and domestic governments. ^
  8. 2018 IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax: Chicago Community Trust. Schedule I, Part II: grants and other assistance paid to organizations and domestic governments. ^
  9. 2018 IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax: The Chicago Community Trust. Part I: Summary. ^

Directors, Employees & Supporters

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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: September - August
  • Tax Exemption Received: June 1, 1951

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2017 Sep Form 990 $508,813,283 $329,251,240 $2,691,371,233 $64,158,828 Y $391,495,440 $0 $38,631,962 $2,348,617 PDF
    2016 Sep Form 990 $389,574,255 $254,129,144 $2,400,554,442 $56,646,446 N $318,580,535 $0 $35,139,265 $1,851,648
    2015 Sep Form 990 $363,265,778 $227,109,745 $2,166,574,609 $43,490,780 N $279,997,753 $0 $33,649,702 $1,755,849 PDF
    2014 Sep Form 990 $290,361,380 $185,624,341 $2,154,153,101 $39,019,832 N $195,636,524 $0 $31,274,444 $1,506,552 PDF
    2013 Sep Form 990 $299,248,702 $174,173,335 $1,958,655,846 $33,479,200 N $207,390,253 $0 $29,999,409 $1,502,110 PDF
    2012 Sep Form 990 $223,388,025 $187,992,776 $1,698,090,675 $31,271,837 Y $171,173,332 $317,500 $29,427,238 $1,348,927 PDF
    2011 Sep Form 990 $64,517,401 $67,817,832 $1,041,089,398 $33,544,883 N $20,116,939 $0 $21,678,569 $1,194,200 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Chicago Community Trust (CCT)

    225 NORTH MICHIGAN AVENUE SUITE 220
    CHICAGO, IL 60601-7757