Switzer Foundation: Leadership Grant Program

Robert & Patricia Switzer Foundation

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Grant amount: Up to US $40,000

Next anticipated deadline: Feb 1, 2020 (Pre proposal)

Later anticipated deadlines: Mar 1, 2020 (Full proposal)

Applicant type: Nonprofit Government Entity College / University

Funding uses: Fellowship

Location of project: Anywhere in the world

Location of residency: United States

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About this funder:



The Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation created the Leadership Grant Program to help advance the leadership capacity and professional careers of Switzer Fellows, and to give non-profit organizations, educational institutions and public agencies greater access to individuals with superior technical, scientific or policy expertise. Grants are awarded to organizations actively addressing environmental improvement through projects designed collaboratively with Switzer Fellows.

The Leadership Grants Program is most appropriate for organizations creating new project initiatives for which a Switzer Fellow's expertise can contribute to near-term impact, or proposing to add a Switzer Fellow to staff.

Funds may be used to cover direct program costs, including:

  • salaries and benefits,
  • consulting fees,
  • travel,
  • materials and
  • equipment.

 At this time, the Foundation is only awarding one-year grants and will not commit to subsequent years’ funding at the time of the initial grant award. In exceptional cases, a second year of funding may be sought from the Leadership Grants Program; however, the applicant organization is expected to demonstrate an increasing cost-share over time and substantial progress towards project goals. Requests for successive grants will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

In some cases a Leadership grant will support a project in an organization where a Fellow is already employed. Such requests may be considered if the project will significantly elevate the Fellow's leadership role in the organization and take his or her work in a significant new direction that will have direct environmental benefits.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • U.S.-based non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations with public charity status, government agencies and educational institutions which aim to employ a Switzer Fellow in a substantive leadership role are eligible to apply.
  • The project or position must have an applied focus that will yield positive environmental change.
  • Support for Fellows doing international work may be considered as long as a U.S.-based host organization is the grantee and all other criteria are met.
  • Up to 15% of overhead recovery will be considered. 
  • Only those projects in which Fellows will make a significant contribution to research, policy or practice beyond the university will be considered.


  • For projects in which the Fellow will be based at a college or university, please be advised that projects which create new institutions, centers of study, or educational programs will NOT be eligible for Leadership Grant funding. 
  • A Fellow may not receive more than three years of funding through the Leadership Grant Program in one or more projects. 
  • A single organization may only submit one concept letter per cycle and may not receive more than one grant per year.