General Information

The Community Foundation currently only accepts grant applications for the Knight Foundation Fund. Please see below for more information.

Knight Foundation Fund 


The Community Foundation accepts grant applications through the Knight Foundation Fund, a component fund at the Community Foundation. Please read the information below to learn more about the Knight Foundation Fund’s goals and objectives and the application process.

The Knight Foundation Fund is able to invest approximately $200,000 in Tallahassee each year. There is no maximum or minimum limit on the amount for which you may apply, however grant amounts typically range between $5,000-$25,000.

For more information about the Knight Fund grant opportunity, please contact Laurie Hartsfield Burleson at or (850) 222-2899.


Knight supports Tallahassee’s work in revitalizing its downtown and bordering communities in order to attract and retain talented people (ages 24-35) and promote economic opportunity. Knight invests in Tallahassee’s core city vibrancy by supporting projects in smart design, the arts and entrepreneurship.


Applicants to the Knight Foundation Fund must meet all of the following criteria:

  • Good standing as a not-for-profit with the Florida Secretary of State’s office;
  • Currently exempt under IRS Section 501(c)(3) and classified as organizations to which contributions are deductible under Section 170(c)(2), normally a public charity under Section 509(a); and
  • Doing the work described in the application in Tallahassee’s downtown area and surrounding neighborhoods.

We are unable to make grants to individuals. Each applicant must be an organization meeting all of the eligibility requirements set forth above.


**At this time, due to circumstances beyond the Community Foundation's control, the review process for submitted 2020 Letters of Inquiry will not begin until April. We apologize for the delay.**

To apply for funding, please submit a Letter of Inquiry which can be accessed from the link below. Letters of Inquiry will be accepted on a rolling basis throughout each calendar year. 

All interested applicants must submit a complete Letter of Inquiry electronically via email to Once submitted, you will receive a return email acknowledging our receipt. If you have any questions, please contact Laurie Hartsfield Burleson, Sr. Director of Donor Relations at (850) 222-2899 or

Your organization will receive notification within 60 days as to whether you will be invited to submit a full proposal. Actual requirements will be provided after selection and notification.

Click HERE to download the 2020 Letter of Inquiry form.


Knight Foundation logo

Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. The Foundation advances journalism in the digital age and invests in the vitality of communities where the Knight Brothers owned newspapers. Knight Foundation’s goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which they believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit


Please click below to see prior Knight Foundation Fund grant recipients and project descriptions:

Community Foundation 20th Anniversary Grants Awarded 

TALLAHASSEE, FL, June 13, 2017 – In celebration of our 20th anniversary, The Community Foundation of North Florida is pleased to announce that we are awarding a total of $60,000 in grants to area nonprofits. The purpose of these grants is to strengthen the internal capacity of these organizations in a systemic way so they can deliver their services more effectively or efficiently.  These grants are made possible by a generous gift from the Ethel and Edwin Ramsey Fund.  In 2011, Mrs. Ramsey left a significant gift to the Community Foundation in her Last Will and Testament and asked us to support a wide variety of local charitable organizations carrying forward the Ramsey’s legacy.

Operating dollars and support of internal workings are often the most needed yet toughest dollars for charities to obtain.  Because of this, the Community Foundation focuses its unrestricted funds on infra-structure support helping nonprofits get the training, tools and technology they need to execute their mission. Some examples of activities that would qualify for the funding are improving technology; training or education for board and/or staff members; strategic planning; implementing or improving assessments of programs, management, board, financial, fundraising, or otherwise; and increasing knowledge, skills or resources for accounting, financial management, fundraising, marketing and communications.

One nonprofit will receive $20,000 and eight others will receive $5,000 each.  The recipient organizations are listed below including a brief description of their mission and information about the infra-structure support they will receive.

Eight $5,000 grants:

  • Alzheimer’s Project, Inc. exists to provide comfort, support, and assistance to persons with memory disorders and their caregivers in the Big Bend area. The grant will provide them the ability to purchase a complete fundraising and management system to capture donor data, use it effectively, leverage client support of the organization, and evaluate and track their progress. Over time, the system will help increase funding for the organization to meet the growing demand for its services. For more information about this activity please contact Debbie Moroney at debbie@alzheimersproject,org or (850) 386-2778.
  • Calhoun Liberty Community Outreach, Inc. is laying the groundwork for civic capacity to increase cross-sector efforts to address community wide issues and improve circumstances. This grant will be used to strengthen the proficiency of the organization’s Board of Directors. The funds enable them to receive fundraising and grant writing training and complete a strategic planning process. By reinforcing the board’s abilities in these areas it will help the organization achieve and sustain lasting change. For more information about this activity please contact Winter Collins at or (850) 643-7724.
  • Lee’s Place provides grief, loss and trauma therapy to individuals regardless of their financial circumstances. The grant dollars will be used to replace outdated and inefficient technology for fundraising, financial and client records and compliance.  The technology will enable staff to be more efficient in their administrative functions leaving more time to focus on client care. For more information about this activity please contact Beth Tedio at or (850) 841-7733.
  • LeMoyne Art Foundation promotes and advances education, interest and participation in the contemporary visual arts. This grant will allow the organization to update computer systems and technology in order to integrate all systems within the multi building complex. This upgrade will increase efficiency, and create a more cohesive working environment for employees, board members and volunteers. For more information about this activity please contact Dianne Perkins at or (850) 566-2949.
  • Refuge House serves all people affected by domestic violence and sexual assault. The grant will be used for technology and equipment upgrades to support staff training and community awareness. This will let staff achieve skills, knowledge and empathy required to provide services to the clients and allow the organization to provide public awareness while protecting client privacy. For more information about this activity please contact Meg Baldwin at or (850) 922-6062.
  • Friends of St. Marks Wildlife Refuge supports all aspects of St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge and their efforts to conserve the natural diversity of North Florida. This grant will allow the organization to upgrade their accounting system to provide financial statements required by public and private grant making entities. The improvement also gives the organization the necessary information needed so they can expand their ability to fundraise and seek grants enabling them to continue their work. For more information about this activity please contact John Haines at or (850) 656-6540.
  • Tallahassee Youth Orchestra works to enrich the musical and creative lives of young musicians through affordable instruction and performance opportunities. The grant will provide improved technology, equipment and software including a single database system and upgraded accounting software.  This increased efficiency will enable the staff and board to operate TYO in a more effective manner and increase capacity to grow their donor base. For more information about this activity please contact Stephen Masterson at or (850) 445-3657.
  • The Village Square is a unique model for civic engagement encouraging communities to have factually based, civil conversations across ideological, racial, ethnic and religious divisions. This grant will make available fundraising training and development for staff. In addition to training, a fundraising model for the organization will be developed for future use. These activities will result in long term sustainability by making staff more effective in raising money for current and future work of the organization. For more information about this activity please contact Liz Joyner at or (850) 264-8785.

One $20,000 grant to increase the capacity of a relatively new community organization
that educates, trains and advocates for nonprofits of all kinds in our community:

Institute for Nonprofit Innovation and Excellence (INIE) is a management support organization that helps support the capacity building of all nonprofits in our areas by advocating for the sector and helping agencies access resources and training to better fulfil their missions. The INIE grant increases staff capacity to focus on (a) membership recruitment and retention, (b) planning and execution of nonprofit trainings allowing more area nonprofits to benefit from the valuable services and professional development that INIE provides and (c) sustainability fundraising.   The grant also funds strategic planning for the board and a site visit to a like organization in another city increase the board’s understanding of how management support organizations, like INIE, function and help the organization be better positioned to refine its business model and programming to achieve maximum impact and greater financial sustainability. For more information about this activity please contact Jessica Lowe-Minor at or (850) 201-9766.

 “We excited to celebrate 20 years of helping people with charitable giving and honored to carry out Ms. Ramsey’s wishes. I know Ms. Ramsey would be thrilled that her gift is strengthening the internal capacity of a variety of local nonprofits.” said Joy Watkins, Former President & CEO of the Community Foundation of North Florida.