MACP moves to a remote workplace in response to COVID-19 >

Our Mission

To provide meaningful assistance and support to society, the arts, and the environment.

Scroll for more

ABOUT

Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP) supports efforts to enhance quality of life and prevent and relieve suffering of children, families, and seniors; preserve and promote the environment and the arts; and encourage the humane treatment of animals.

Founded by the late Margaret A. Cargill, MACP actively partners with capable organizations to make a lasting difference for individuals and communities, with particular attention to overlooked causes. MACP’s combined assets (Margaret A. Cargill Foundation and Anne Ray Foundation) place us among the top ten foundations in the United States.

MACP develops and implements integrated grantmaking strategies across seven programmatic areas we call domains: Arts & Cultures, Disaster Relief & Recovery, Environment, Animal Welfare, Quality of Life, Teachers, and Legacy & Opportunity.

Our grantmaking approach is rooted in direction from our founder and reflects our Philosophy of Grantmaking.

Grant proposals are by invitation only, and we do not consider unsolicited requests for support.

OUR APPROACH

Within our domains, our program strategies are anchored in compelling issues where we want to make a meaningful, measurable, and sustainable difference in a defined period of time.

We limit the number of issues we choose to address, set clear goals for the difference we wish to make on each one, and allocate our resources accordingly. We pay special attention to underserved or low-attention areas and causes, and we favor community-based, on-the-ground programs rather than policy initiatives or endowments.

We continually hone strategies within our domains, investing in evaluation efforts and making substantial learning grants to inform decision-making and program development.

Core to our approach is strengthening the effectiveness and capacity of our key grantee partners by investing in their leadership, management, and operational capabilities.

We believe the best way to make a lasting difference on issues we care about is by investing in long-term relationships with key grantees, strengthening our combined abilities to make a meaningful difference in the world. Because of this, we look to our key grantees as partners, and they help us shape what we do. We work with these partners to find solutions that are consistent with the objectives and values of both our organization and theirs.

Philosophy of Grantmaking

Our grantmaking reflects our values and Margaret Cargill’s guiding principles and is always directed toward our mission and core purposes.

We expect our grantmaking to have these characteristics:

  • We lead with our values, internally and externally.
  • We partner with capable organizations that have demonstrated their ability to work successfully in our interest areas and in a manner consistent with our values. We look to our grantees as partners and co-learners.
  • We provide meaningful support to strategic grantees.
  • We support work in and with communities toward sustainable solutions.
  • We pay special attention to underserved or low-attention areas, populations, or issues.
  • We value and affirm the integration of all functions of the Philanthropies in our grantmaking.
  • We make measurable impact on focused goals.
  • We evaluate our work, reshape our approaches as we learn, share and apply our learning to future grantmaking.

All this we do, not to bring recognition to ourselves, but to support our grantees in the work they do to provide meaningful assistance and support to society, the arts, and the environment, in a manner consistent with our founder’s wishes and intent. Done well, this will distinguish us.

Our Grantmaking Entities

Margaret A. Cargill Foundation (MACF) is a private foundation that came into existence upon Ms. Cargill’s death in August 2006. In 2018, MACF’s assets were approximately $2.8 billion.

Anne Ray Foundation (ARF) is a supporting organization, which may make grants only to beneficiary organizations specifically named by Ms. Cargill. In 2018, ARF’s assets were approximately $4.0 billion.

Our Reach

In 2018, our national and international grantmaking efforts consisted of 385 grants, totaling more than $275 million.

spacer background image map
Case Study Animals

Southern California Grantmaking (Akaloa)

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHT: SAN DIEGO HUMANE SOCIETY Go to Case Study

The San Diego Humane Society is setting the model for what humane societies nationwide can achieve. An innovative feline nursery and canine behavior center have helped bring the number of adoptable animals who are euthanized each year to zero.

8
Case Study Environment

Quality of Life

Program Highlight: Y-USA Go to Case Study
Case Study Arts & Cultures

Tropical Forests

Program Highlight: CLUA Go to Case Study

Our History

Our History

Margaret A. CargillMargaret A. Cargill

Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP) is the umbrella over the grantmaking entities funded by the late Margaret Cargill.

Ms. Cargill was a woman of warmth and modesty who used her wealth to support organizations doing work she valued. During her lifetime she made significant, but usually anonymous, donations to organizations globally, nationally, and in Southern California, where she lived most of her adult life.

MACP began with the formation of Akaloa Resource Foundation in 1995. The name Akaloa was selected to preserve our founder’s anonymity and direct attention toward grantees’ good work. That approach remains central to our cultural values today.

Our philanthropic mission began with separate entities, each with distinct grantmaking criteria, but Margaret always envisioned her philanthropy as a whole and she approached her giving with a single philosophy. More than twenty years later, Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies has made her vision a reality with more than $1 billion in cumulative grantmaking.

Our History

1995

Akaloa Resource Foundation formed; first grant to Mingei International Museum in San Diego, Calif.

MACP History 1995

Our History

1996

Anne Ray Charitable Trust formed; first grant to American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis, Minn.

MACP History 1996

Our History

2006

Founder Margaret A. Cargill passes away; Margaret A. Cargill Foundation formed

MACP History 2006

Our History

2009

Margaret A. Cargill Foundation launches an ambitious restricted grant program to better inform its grantmaking process.

MACP History 2009

Our History

2011

MACP begins increasing the size and scale of our grantmaking

MACP History 2011

Our History

2014

MACP reaches estimated level of annual grantmaking

MACP History 2014

Our History

2015

MACP celebrates $1 billion in total, cumulative grantmaking

MACP History 2015

Our History

2016

MACP announces integrated grantmaking strategy and approach across our grantmaking entities

MACP History 2016

Our History

2016

MACP completes expansion of our Eden Prairie headquarters

MACP History 2016

Our History

2017

MACP finalizes governance transition, moving from three grantmaking entities to two foundations. Founding CEO Christy Morse announces her retirement and Paul Bush is named President & CEO.

MACP History 2017
Our Home

Our Home

A home that reflects our mission

With one of our key philanthropic priorities centered on the environment, we saw our headquarters as a chance to lead by example. In spring 2016, we completed a major building expansion. Through sustainable design practices we tripled our building’s size while reducing its environmental impact.

Our Home
Our Home

A sustainable model

Our building is among the greenest in the country, using 95% reused or recycled materials and designed to the platinum LEED standard for energy conservation and sustainability.

Our Home
Our Home

Recycling our water

The project includes Minnesota’s first greywater drip irrigation system and 19 water storage tanks, which store 55,000 gallons of rainwater to sustain the native plantings, vegetable gardens, and orchards on our property.

Our Home
Our Home

Here comes the sun

Our rooftop photovoltaic and solar thermal panels will provide 15% of the electricity to operate our facility and 70% of the energy to heat our water.

Our Home

Harnessing geothermal energy

The building has an extensive geothermal system that uses the earth’s constant underground temperature for heating and cooling the building. This innovative system is estimated to reduce energy costs by 60-70%.

Our Home

Preserving our backyard

With a protected wetland adjoining our property, and regional parks nearby, we designed our landscaping with water quality in mind. An extensive rain garden, native plantings, and permeable pavers will help ensure effective water management in these sensitive natural areas.

OUR PEOPLE

Our people are at the core of all that we do. What started out as three friends around a kitchen table has now grown to an organization of more than 100 employees dedicated to achieving our mission and honoring the intent of our founder, Margaret Cargill.

Meet Our Staff

Join Our Team

Our Senior Leadership Team

Pictured left to right: Ted Chen, Director, Evaluation and Organizational Learning; Heather Kukla, Vice President and General Counsel; Terry Meersman, Vice President, Programs; Naomi Horsager, Chief Financial Officer; Shawn Wischmeier, Chief Investment Officer; Kim Christianson, Director, Human Resources and Administration; Paul Busch, President & CEO; and Amber Rudell, Director, Strategic Planning and Project Management

Our Boards of Directors bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the organization, including several members who knew our founder, Margaret Cargill, personally. Our Domain Learner initiative helps each member better understand MACP program strategies and the work we support in communities.

Meet Our Board Members

MACP board members also serve on our Investment Committees, along with five external investment committee members that provide deep expertise in the finance and investment sectors.

Meet Our Committee Members