Greater Cincinnati Foundation Awards $1 Million to Six Area Nonprofits Through its Racial Justice Fund

September 24, 2020

CINCINNATI (September 24, 2020) — Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) has awarded $1 million to six area non-profits from its new Racial Justice Fund.

Established June 2020 with a commitment of $5 million over five years, the goal of the Racial Justice Fund is to advance matters of fairness and justice with a critical focus on the systems that affect the Black community, specifically criminal, economic and social justice. More broadly, the fund seeks to address the root causes of systemic racism in our community through policy change.

GCF supplemented its own research and data compilation by speaking directly with social justice organizations and community members about the region’s greatest needs and the work underway that could be accelerated with additional support.

“We are inspired by these passionate organizations that are on the ground, rallying against injustices and moving our community forward,” said Ellen M. Katz, President/CEO of GCF.­  “Through the Racial Justice Fund, we are excited to amplify their work.”

The current Racial Justice Fund grant recipients are:

Ohio Justice and Policy Center 

Leading criminal justice reform entity in our state working to protect the rights and dignity of incarcerated people; the Racial Justice Fund will support operations and capacity building.

Ohio Transformation Fund 

A funder’s collaborative committed to equity in Ohio and working on policy to reduce the number of Ohioans incarcerated; the Racial Justice Fund will support traditional and rapid response grants.

National Development Council (Technical Assistance) 

Ensures black-owned businesses recover from COVID-19; the Racial Justice Fund and co-investment funds will support women-owned businesses & solopreneurs.


Coaches economically marginalized individuals to launch, maintain and grow enterprises; the Racial Justice Fund will support small business grants to Mortar’s network of alumni entrepreneurs facing closure and income loss due to COVID-19.

The Heights Movement

Resident-led organization serving the first predominately Black self-governing community north of the Mason-Dixon line (est. 1947); the Racial Justice Fund will support operations, advocacy efforts and help move the shooting range out of Lincoln Heights.

Queen’s Village of Cradle Cincinnati

A supportive network of Black women and an initiative of Cradle Cincinnati, this community empowers the voice of Black women around decision making and racial healing. The Racial Justice Fund will support operations and growth in the network’s social capital.

“Our initial grants signal the beginning of what is a multi-year commitment by the GCF Governing Board to address the root cause of inequity within our community,” said Delores Hargrove-Young, GCF Governing Board Chair. “We hope to inspire other funders and donors to join us in this effort.”

Through the Racial Justice Fund, GCF empowers non-profit partners to rely on their expertise to apply multi-year investments to programs or initiatives that will provide the greatest impact to our community.

In addition to making its initial investments, GCF is committed to including the voice of the community and those most impacted in this work. GCF has identified Black-led research and consulting firm Praxis Matters as its lead partner. Between now and the end of the year, Praxis Matters will host community conversations with grassroots organizations and residents to better understand the challenges surrounding racial justice work. Based on these insights, Praxis Matters will work with GCF to identify focus areas, needs and investment priorities to maximize the impact of the Racial Justice Fund moving forward.

Individuals interested in contributing to the Racial Justice Fund can go to


About Greater Cincinnati Foundation

As the region’s leading community foundation, Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) connects people with purpose in an eight-county region in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. GCF is leading the charge toward a more vibrant Greater Cincinnati for everyone — now, and for generations to come.