Our Mission

Illinois Prairie Community Foundation connects people who care with causes that matter by offering philanthropic leadership, organization and grant-making for the long-term enrichment of our community

We are a grant-making public charity dedicated to improving the lives of people in our community. We bring together the financial resources of individuals, families and businesses to effectively support nonprofits in the community.

We engage and assist individuals in sharing their gifts and build permanent funds in our four-county service area (McLean, DeWitt, Livingston and Logan counties).

Endowment builder, community connector, grant maker.

Community foundations are grant-making public charities dedicated to improving the lives of people in a defined local geographic area. They bring together the financial resources of individuals, families, and businesses to support effective nonprofits in their communities.

Community foundations play a key role in identifying and solving community problems. More than 750 community foundations operate in urban and rural areas in every state in the United States. Illinois Prairie Community Foundation is a member of the Alliance of Illinois Community Foundations, comprised of 32 community foundations within the state of Illinois, each representing a distinct geographical area.

All Hands


In 1996, a small group of individuals envisioned a community foundation for McLean County. Today, we owe much to the late Carol Reitan, Alan Sender and Drake Zimmerman for doing considerable research on existing foundations and for taking their message to many community leaders. They persisted and gained enough support to turn their dream into a reality by successfully establishing a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization two years later. Mayor Judy Markowitz of Bloomington, Mayor Kent Karraker of Normal and McLean County Board Chairperson Gary Riss agreed to serve as the first incorporating board. The Community Foundation of McLean County was officially established on November 6, 1998.


"Without the structure and support of the Illinois Prairie Community Foundation, I believe we would not have been able to successfully complete this amazing project and our community is so lucky to have this incredible organization as a resource."

– Corin Chapman, Co-Chair of the Harmony Park Project, the first all-inclusive park in McLean County

“It’s amazing what combined contributions can accomplish in a small town. Endow Atlanta partnered with IPCF and we’ve really benefited from their investment, administrative expertise and support.” 

- Bill Thomas, who helped create the Endow Atlanta Fund

“The Community Foundation has shared ideas, expertise, and provided opportunities for us to tell the special story of Poetry Place to potential funders.”

– Patsy Bowles, a longtime speech pathologist at Sheridan School who started the Poetry Place Endowment Fund

“If we didn't have the IPCF grant, we would have to make major changes to the program like charging more and not being able to have it (summer arts and culture program) for three weeks.

– Cathy Maciariello, director of Atlanta Public Library, which received a Mirza/Arts & Culture Grant to help fund the summer arts and culture program