Skip to content

Press Release

The New York Community Trust Launches Centennial Celebration Honoring 100 Years of Philanthropic Impact


CONTACT: [email protected]

Looking Ahead, The Trust Reinforces Commitment to Democratizing Access to Philanthropy to Support Lasting Impact Across Eight NY Counties, Representing Over 12.4 Million People

The New York Community Trust, New York’s largest community foundation, today announced the launch of its centennial celebration, commemorating 100 years of uniting the most generous New Yorkers with the most high-impact nonprofits to support healthy, vibrant, and equitable communities throughout New York City, Long Island, and Westchester. A look into how The Trust has shaped New York over the past 100 years can be found here

For a century, The Trust has been at the forefront of critical causes, including racial, ethnic, and religious equity, food and housing insecurity, environmental justice, economic inequality, education, and health care reform, equitable access to the arts, making the region a better place to grow old, and LGBTQ+ rights. In the 1930s, The Trust created the first-ever donor-advised fund, forever changing the landscape of philanthropic giving. 

An invaluable agent for change, The Trust has catalyzed pivotal projects by funding pioneering ideas. It was one of the first private funders of AIDS research, has been instrumental in expanding the city’s capacity to help immigrants, and supported the creation of the High Line and redevelopment of Governors Island. It has also played a key role in emergency response efforts to our city’s most urgent crises, from September 11th to Covid-19. 

The New York Community Trust makes more than $50 million in grants each year from its competitive grantmaking program across a broad range of issue areas and $150 million in grants suggested from its donor-advised funds; The Trust awarded a total of $5.7 billion from 1924 to 2023.  

As part of its centennial celebration, The Trust is unveiling a new visual identity reflecting the organization’s core values and mission to foster and engage in enduring and innovative philanthropy. The new brand is united by a common throughline, signifying the continuity of The Trust from the past, through the present, and into the future. The new brand architecture also integrates its longtime regional offices, The Long Island Community Foundation and the Westchester Community Foundation, with its New York City office under one name: The New York Community Trust. 

“The New York Community Trust is proud to be an essential part of the fabric of our city and our region and we are endlessly grateful for our generous donors and nonprofit partners who have made that possible over the past century,” said Amy Freitag, president of The New York Community Trust. “Our grantmaking serves as the full expression of our values, rooted in our shared vision for truly inclusive and equitable communities. As we look to the future, we know The Trust is only as strong as the diverse communities we serve. We are committed to democratizing access to philanthropy and harnessing the collective power of the 12.4 million people in our region to address key issues, from climate change and homelessness to arts and the environment to criminal justice reform and education equity. In one of the most diverse and vibrant places in the world, we are honored to help build a better New York today, tomorrow, and forever.” 

The Trust aims to engage the next generation of donors by making philanthropy more accessible to New Yorkers from all walks of life. Its months-long centennial celebration will continue into the fall and through the end of the year with an inspiring lineup of special events held across the five boroughs, Westchester, and Long Island. The events will bring together generous donors, grantmaking partners, and communities to discuss issues ranging from the role of the arts in cultural preservation to climate resilience in our neighborhoods. All events will be free and details will be available on The Trust’s website this summer.

“The New York Community Trust is the silent force behind major victories for justice – landmark achievements like legalizing gay marriage and over-the-counter birth control in New York State, reforming literacy education, and New York’s Raise the Age legislation, which changed the age that a child can be prosecuted as an adult in criminal cases from 16 to 18,” said Jamie Drake, board chair at The New York Community Trust. “We’re the secret ingredient driving positive change in our communities every day. From historic milestones to everyday impact, The Trust stands as a beacon of collaboration and philanthropic innovation. As we mark our centennial, we celebrate our role in shaping a better future and eagerly engage the next generation of changemakers.”

“On Long Island, we have seen firsthand the impact that can be achieved when donors and nonprofits work together toward a common goal,” said David Okorn, The Trust’s executive director for Long Island. “Community foundations can make focused, intentional investments that can catalyze positive change in tangible ways. From supporting and advocating for better policies for farmworkers to funding local arts organizations to drive economic development across our communities, we are so honored to be a part of The Trust’s enduring legacy and look forward to creating a brighter future together.”

“For decades, we’ve been a go-to partner to generous individuals, companies, and other foundations looking to make strategic contributions to communities throughout the county,” said Laura Rossi, The Trust’s executive director for Westchester. “From protecting and preserving the Hudson River and Long Island Sound watersheds to ensuring Westchester’s young people are prepared for college and careers, The Trust is deeply committed to bringing to life New Yorkers’ vision for the future of their communities.” 

For more information about the New York Community Trust and its centennial celebration, please visit:

About The New York Community Trust 

As New York’s largest community foundation, The New York Community Trust fosters and engages in enduring and innovative philanthropy, making grants that bring together the diverse, local knowledge and expertise of its team, nonprofits, and partners to help donors fulfill their vision for the causes they love. The New York Community Trust has an endowment of over $3 billion. From education and the arts to health care and the environment, The New York Community Trust seeks to improve every aspect of the cultural and civic life of New York City, Long Island, and Westchester. The New York Community Trust celebrates 100 years of impact and looks forward to the next 100 years of improving life for New Yorkers. This is philanthropy for New Yorkers, by New Yorkers.