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New Record for Grantmaking

Embargoed For Release:
December 15, 2006

Karen Whalen
Director of Communication
(269) 968-1611

Kellogg Foundation Sets New Record for Grantmaking

BATTLE CREEK, Michigan – The Kellogg Foundation reported today that it awarded nearly $287 million in grants during fiscal year 2005-06 – the largest annual total in its history, and a 15 percent increase over last year.

“While our emphasis will always be on ‘helping people to help themselves,’ there’s no question that having more funds at our disposal allows us to extend the impact of our work,” said Sterling Speirn, president and CEO of the Kellogg Foundation. “This growth puts us in a better position to face the challenges – planned and unplanned – that lie ahead.”

In 2005-06, the biggest unforeseen challenge to face the Foundation came in the forms of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. After the storms devastated the Gulf Coast in August 2005, the Foundation took quick action. To date, the Foundation has awarded $39 million in grants to the region, making it one of the leading private funders of hurricane relief and recovery efforts.

Stories, photos, and video of the Foundation’s hurricane recovery efforts — and all of its program areas — are featured in the 2006 Annual Report, available on-line at www.wkkf.org.

The Foundation’s primary program areas are: health; food systems and rural development; youth and education; and philanthropy and volunteerism. As detailed in the annual report, of the Foundation’s program payments, $235 million were made in the United States (including $56 million in Michigan); $28 million were made in southern Africa; and $23 million were made in Latin America and the Caribbean.

In its hometown of Battle Creek, Michigan, the Foundation awarded $7.5 million. Since it was established in 1930, the Foundation has awarded nearly $300 million in the Battle Creek/Calhoun County area.

Earlier today, during its Annual Meeting of the Board of Trustees, the Foundation announced the retirement of Howard Sims of Detroit, Michigan. Sims had served as a trustee since 1981. 

“An architect by profession, Howard Sims has helped to build a strong Foundation,” noted Cynthia H. Milligan, chair of the Board.  “His active participation in the work of the Board has helped the organization to stay focused on fulfilling its donor’s desire to help people help themselves.”

Replacing Sims on the Board will be Rod Gillum, of Detroit, Michigan. Gillum is currently vice president for corporate responsibility and diversity at General Motors. He is also the chairman of the General Motors Foundation. 

Gillum joined General Motors in 1979 and has held several executive positions.  He also served in two separate capacities at Saturn Corporation, a GM subsidiary.  From 1985 to 1986, he was the manager for Strategic Planning; and, from 1988 to 1993 he was the Saturn vice president, general counsel and secretary.

From 1986 to 1988, Gillum was secretary to the General Motors Board of Directors. Immediately prior to his election in 1997 as a vice president, his assignment was as the chief personnel, benefits and labor attorney. In that capacity, he was responsible for all legal matters related to personnel, labor relations, benefit plans, and worker’s compensation. 

Along with Gillum’s appointment to the Board, two other trustees were elected for three-year terms during the Foundation’s Annual Meeting on December 14: Cynthia H. Milligan of Lincoln, Nebraska; and Joseph M. Stewart of Battle Creek, Michigan. Milligan will continue to serve as chair of the Board, the second year of her two-year appointment in that role.

Other Foundation Board members are: Fred P. Keller, Grand Rapids, Michigan; Shirley D. Bowser, Williamsport, Ohio; Hanmin Liu, San Francisco, California; Wenda Weekes Moore, Minneapolis, Minnesota; Dorothy A. Johnson, Grand Haven, Michigan; and Sterling K. Speirn, Battle Creek, Michigan.

Re-elected as Foundation officers were Sterling K. Speirn, president and chief executive officer; Gregory A. Lyman, senior vice president and corporate secretary; James E. McHale, senior vice president for programs; Paul J. Lawler, vice president and chief investment officer; La June Montgomery-Talley, vice president for finance and treasurer; Gail D. McClure, vice president for programs; Richard M. Foster, vice president for programs; Robert F. Long, vice president for programs; C. Patrick Babcock, vice president for programs; and Mary Carole Cotter, general counsel and assistant corporate secretary.

Elected to the Board’s Audit Committee were Johnson, chair; Bowser, Liu, Gillum, Speirn (ex-officio) and Milligan (ex-officio). Elected to the Board Development Committee were Keller, chair; Moore, Johnson, Liu, Speirn (ex-officio), and Milligan (ex-officio). Elected to the Budget Committee were Moore, chair; Keller, Stewart, Speirn (ex-officio), and Milligan (ex-officio). Elected to the Finance Committee were Stewart, chair; Bowser, Gillum, Speirn (ex-officio), and Milligan (ex-officio).

The theme of this year’s annual report is “Building Hope, Building Communities.” In his CEO’s message, Sterling Speirn explains how “hope asserts itself in every effort supported by the Kellogg Foundation. Each of our projects begins as a vision. It’s an unfulfilled hope, but one that’s based on a very clear plan for realization.”

One of the key challenges for philanthropy, Speirn writes, is to give in a way that truly benefits people in the long-term.

“Charity, like philanthropy, is rooted in love of humankind. And direct acts of charity will always be noble and necessary. Yet the mission of philanthropy is to pick up where charity leaves off; to extend the impact and deepen the value of giving.

“The time-honored example is to teach a hungry man to fish – instead of simply giving him enough fish for his next meal …. Like our founder, W.K. Kellogg, we wish to give in a way that makes people stronger and more capable to use their own assets and abilities.”

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation was established in 1930 “to help people help themselves through the practical application of knowledge and resources to improve their quality of life and that of future generations.” To achieve the greatest impact, the Foundation targets its grants toward specific areas. These include: health; food systems and rural development; youth and education; and philanthropy and volunteerism. Within these areas, attention is given to exploring learning opportunities in leadership; information and communication technology; capitalizing on diversity; and social and economic community development.

Grants are concentrated in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the southern African countries of Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe.

For further information, visit the Foundation’s Web site at www.wkkf.org. The site offers: in-depth information about the Foundation’s programming interests; information on the Foundation’s grant application process; a database of current grant recipients; and access to publications which report on Foundation-funded projects.


For a PDF version of this release, please click here.

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