About Us
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Our Mission Print E-mail

Our mission is to expand opportunity for the people of California to participate in a vibrant, successful and inclusive society.

James Irvine, a California agricultural pioneer, established the Foundation in 1937 to benefit the people of California. Since then, the Foundation has met the objectives of its founder by providing more than $1.3 billion in grants to over 3,500 nonprofit organizations across the state.

The guiding principle in all our grantmaking is the idea of expanding opportunity. In our Youth program, that means increasing the number of low-income young people who complete high school on time and earn a postsecondary credential by age 25. In the Arts, it means promoting engagement in the arts for all Californians – the kind that embraces and advances the diverse ways that we experience the arts, and that strengthens our ability to thrive together in a dynamic and complex social environment. And through our California Democracy program, it means advancing effective public policy decision making that is reflective of and responsive to all Californians.

Our Goals

In pursuing our mission, we are guided by the following goals:

  • Advance the educational and economic prospects of low-income Californians to share in and create California's prosperity.
  • Engage a broad cross section of Californians in the civic and cultural life of their communities and the state.
  • Enhance mutual understanding and communication among diverse racial, ethnic and socioeconomic groups.
  • Enrich the state's intellectual and creative environment.

Glass Pockets

Glass Pockets is an initiative of the Foundation Center designed to promote online transparency and accountability among large private foundations. Click on the icon below to see how Irvine rates in terms of best practices.


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