The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, commonly known as Mellon Foundation, is a New York City-based private foundation with five core areas of focus and endowed with wealth accumulated by Andrew Mellon of the Mellon family of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It is the product of the 1969 merger of the Avalon Foundation and the Old Dominion Foundation. These foundations had been set up separately by Ailsa Mellon Bruce and Paul Mellon, the children of Andrew Mellon.
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
|June 30, 1969
Ailsa Mellon Bruce
Museums and art conservation
|Elizabeth Alexander (President)
The foundation is housed in New York City in the expanded former offices of the Bollingen Foundation, another educational philanthropy once supported by Paul Mellon. Poet and scholar Elizabeth Alexander is the foundation's current president. Her predecessors have included Earl Lewis, Don Randel, William G. Bowen, John Edward Sawyer and Nathan Pusey. In 2004, the foundation was awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Mellon has a small research group that has investigated doctoral education, collegiate admissions, independent research libraries, charitable nonprofits, scholarly communications, and other issues to ensure that the foundation's grants would be well-informed and more effective. Some of the recent publications of this effect include Equity and Excellence in American Higher Education, Reclaiming the Game: College Sports and Educational Values, JSTOR: A History, The Game of Life: College Sports and Educational Values, and The Shape of the River.
Mellon's endowment has fluctuated in the range of $5–6 billion in recent years, and its annual grantmaking has been on the order of $300 million.