Non-profit

Libra Foundation

Website:

www.thelibrafoundation.org/

Location:

SAN FRANCISCO, CA

Tax ID:

36-4812310

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)-PF

Budget (2020):

Assets: $525,532,142

Type:

Private Grantmaking Foundation

Formation:

2002

President (as of September 2024):

Supriya Lopez Pillai

Budget (2022):

According to its 2022 990 forms, the Libra Foundation announced it had Revenue: $3,443,825

Expenses: $39,201,527

Total Assets: $451,295,059 1

References

  1. The Libra Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2022. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/364812310/202303199349104025/full

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The Libra Foundation is a private grantmaking foundation that supports left-of-center advocacy organizations in the United States and around the world. Its funding priorities include left-of-center social policy, immigration, abortion, and the environment. Notable recipients of large Libra Foundation grants include the ACLU Foundation, the National Economic and Social Rights Initiative, Earthrights International, Drug Policy Alliance, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, Center for Reproductive Rights, and Planned Parenthood Federation of America. 1

It is the principal philanthropic vehicle for Nicholas Pritzker and his wife Susan. Pritzker is a billionaire member of the Pritzker political family that made its money through the Hyatt hotels chain. 2

Background

Since its founding in 2002, the Libra Foundation has donated millions of dollars to hundreds of left-progressive advocacy organizations. 3 4 Serving as the philanthropic-vehicle of billionaire-philanthropists Nicholas and Susan Pritzker, and their four children, the Libra Foundation funds social justice and drug policy, environmentalist policy, and LGBT interests. 5 6 In 2019, the Pritzker family appointed a new executive director of the Libra Foundation that will help the organization transition into a so-called “Libra 2.0.”. 7 8

Major Grant Areas

With over 230 grantees as of December 2019, the Libra Foundation has doled out $76 million to support left-progressivism since its inception. 9 The Libra Foundation claims its main priority is supporting grassroots startups, but large, well-established, organizations have received more funding in recent years. 10

Opposed to the political influence levied by business and money, the foundation backs various labor unions and union-aligned advocacy groups, including National Domestic Workers Alliance and the Working World. It also supports left-of-center news outlets such as Mother Jones, New Media Ventures, and the Center for Investigative Reporting. 11

Liberal Social Policy and Immigration

The foundation has given more money to left-progressive “social justice” organizations than any other area, a total of nearly $38 million since 2011. A sizeable portion of its social justice funding has gone to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Drug Policy Alliance, and other large organizations. 12

In response to the Trump administration’s intensified efforts to curb illegal immigration, the Libra Foundation has enhanced its funding of liberal expansionist immigration groups. 13

Abortion

The Libra Foundation has ramped-up its funding of abortion providers and activists since President Trump took office. By the first half of 2019 alone, the group had already spent $550,000 combatting new abortion restrictions in some Southern states, the money flowing to groups such as Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Center for Reproductive Rights. 14

Environment

In 2019, the foundation set aside $12.7 million for environmental causes. It currently focuses on conservation efforts and what it calls “environmental justice” initiatives. 15

Race

The Libra Foundation was one of the original donors to fund the creation of the California Black Freedom Fund (CBFF) at the end of 2020. The CBFF is a left-of-center grantmaking organization that funds California-based groups that seek to eliminate what it perceives as systemic racism. It used funding from the original donors to provide grants that went towards advocacy for targeted redistricting, so-called racial equity, and the firing of who it determines are racist police officers. 16

Financials

According to its 2022 990 forms, the Libra Foundation announced it had $3,443,825 in revenue, $39,201,527 in expenses, and $451,295,059 in total assets. 17

According to public records from 2017, the Libra Foundation has approximately $334 million in total assets on hand. 18 Meanwhile, the foundation’s annual grants and contributions amount to nearly $16 million. 19

Leadership

Ashley Clark is the acting president of the Libra Foundation, who will continue to serve in her role until September 2024 when Supriya Lopez Pillai will take the position. 20 She has previously served as the knowledge and grants manager for the Foundation until becoming acting president. Prior to working at Libra, Clark was the director of grantee impact and strategic strategies for donor-advised fund Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund (SV2). 21

Supriya Lopez Pillai is the incoming president of the Libra Foundation. It was announced in July 2024 that she should take on the role starting in September. 22 Prior to working at Libra, Pillai was the executive director for left-of-center grantmaking group the Hidden Leaf Foundation from 2018 through 2024.  From 2008 through 2012 she was the executive director for the Funders’ Collaborative on Youth Organizing (FCYO). In 2011 she started her own law firm, Vision & Ink, which had received funding from left-of-center organizations including the California Endowment, the Hyams Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Prior to this, she was the program officer for Asia at the International Women’s Health Coalition, and has previously served on the boards of several organizations including the Global Fund for Women, Political Research Associates (PSA) and the Third Wave Fund. 23 24 25

References

  1. Data compiled by FoundationSearch.com subscription service, a project of Metasoft Systems, Inc., from forms filed with the IRS. Queries conducted January 8, 2020.
  2. “Nicholas Pritzker.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine. Accessed January 8, 2020. https://www.forbes.com/profile/nicholas-pritzker/#49ab533d59d6.
  3. “The Libra Foundation.” GuideStar. Accessed November 11, 2019. https://www.guidestar.org/profile/30-0031117.
  4. Rojc, Philip. “Inside the Libra Foundation: How a Branch of the Pritzker Family Backs Movement Building.” Inside Philanthropy. October 22, 2018. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2018/10/22/inside-the-libra-foundation-how-a-branch-of-the-pritzker-family-backs-movement-building.
  5. Rojc, Philip. “Inside the Libra Foundation: How a Branch of the Pritzker Family Backs Movement Building.” Inside Philanthropy. October 22, 2018. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2018/10/22/inside-the-libra-foundation-how-a-branch-of-the-pritzker-family-backs-movement-building.
  6. “Nicholas Pritzker, II.” Forbes. October 2, 2019. Accessed December 5, 2019. https://www.forbes.com/profile/nicholas-pritzker-ii/.
  7. “About Us.” The Libra Foundation. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/about/.
  8. Williams, Tate. “How One of the Country’s Wealthiest Families Is Linking Up Climate and Justice.” Inside Philanthropy. January 14, 2015. Accessed November 18, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2015/1/14/how-one-of-the-countrys-wealthiest-families-is-linking-up-cl.html.
  9. “Grantees.” The Libra Foundation. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/grantees/.
  10. Rojc, Philip. “Inside the Libra Foundation: How a Branch of the Pritzker Family Backs Movement Building.” Inside Philanthropy. October 22, 2018. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2018/10/22/inside-the-libra-foundation-how-a-branch-of-the-pritzker-family-backs-movement-building.
  11. Rojc, Philip. “Inside the Libra Foundation: How a Branch of the Pritzker Family Backs Movement Building.” Inside Philanthropy. October 22, 2018. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2018/10/22/inside-the-libra-foundation-how-a-branch-of-the-pritzker-family-backs-movement-building.
  12. Rojc, Philip. “Inside the Libra Foundation: How a Branch of the Pritzker Family Backs Movement Building.” Inside Philanthropy. October 22, 2018. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2018/10/22/inside-the-libra-foundation-how-a-branch-of-the-pritzker-family-backs-movement-building.
  13. Kappe, Laurie. “$350,000 in Grants Approved in Response to Family Separation at the Border.” The Libra Foundation, August 15, 2018. Accessed December 28, 2019. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/2018/08/350000-in-grants-approved-in-response-to-family-separation-at-the-border/.
  14. “Grantees.” The Libra Foundation. Accessed November 2, 2019. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/grantees/.
  15. “Program Areas.” The Libra Foundation. Accessed January 7, 2020. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/program-areas/.
  16. California Black Freedom Fund, February 4, 2021. https://cablackfreedomfund.org/#partners.
  17. The Libra Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2022. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/364812310/202303199349104025/full
  18. The Libra Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2017.
  19. The Libra Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2017.
  20. “LIBRA FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES SUPRIYA LOPEZ PILLAI AS NEXT PRESIDENT.” Libra Foundation, July 15, 2024. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/news/supriya-lopez-pillai-named-libra-president
  21. “Ashley Clark.” The National Center for Family Philanthropy, Accessed July 24, 2024. https://www.ncfp.org/people/ashley-clark/
  22. “LIBRA FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES SUPRIYA LOPEZ PILLAI AS NEXT PRESIDENT.” Libra Foundation, July 15, 2024. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/news/supriya-lopez-pillai-named-libra-president
  23. Kavate, Michael. ”
    Six Things to Know About the Libra Foundation’s New President, Supriya Lopez Pillai.” Inside Philanthropy, July 17, 2024. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2024/7/17/six-things-to-know-about-the-libra-foundations-new-president-supriya-lopez-pillai?utm_source=Funding+News+%26+Tips&utm_campaign=b4119904c4-newsletterdaily&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c776dbf0df-b4119904c4-95150929
  24. “LIBRA FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES SUPRIYA LOPEZ PILLAI AS NEXT PRESIDENT.” Libra Foundation, July 15, 2024. https://www.thelibrafoundation.org/news/supriya-lopez-pillai-named-libra-president
  25. “Who We Are.” Hidden Leaf Foundation, Accessed July 24, 2024. https://www.hiddenleaf.org/who-we-are/
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: September 1, 2015

  • 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
    2020 Dec Form PF $0 $0 $525,532,142 $9,573,123 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2019 Dec Form PF $0 $0 $513,535,676 $11,748,584 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2015 Dec Form PF $0 $0 $1 $1 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Libra Foundation

    1 LETTERMAN DRIVE SUITE C4-420
    SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94129-1494