Greater New Orleans Foundation
Greater New Orleans Foundation was founded by leaders of the Community Chest of New Orleans, an organization dating back to 1923. These leaders worried that, along with rapid development, the region might face "problems of unprecedented magnitude" better addressed by a full-fledged community foundation. This idea of a full-fledged community foundation became reality in 1983. The foundation opened with nearly $4 million in assets. Eventually, these assets would grow to $170 million and the Foundation would become the region's leader in promoting the power of philanthropy. These qualities were called upon in unprecedented ways in 2005 when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated the region. The greatest challenge of the Foundation's short lifetime had arrived, and long-time suppoters as well as new ones from around the world responded. Since the hurricanes, the Foundation has played a key role in the recovery of the region, coordinating efforts with national and local foundations, and state and city officials to support the Unified New Orleans Plan, an effort that made possible the release of hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid to the city.