Our Mission

We strive to improve access and opportunity for all New Yorkers

The Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund strives to increase access and opportunity for all New Yorkers and foster healthy and vibrant communities. The fund uses an equity lens to develop initiatives and to issue grants, driven by the principle that everyone should have access to positive and enriching opportunities that define a full range of human experience and that circumstances of birth should not limit choices or short circuit success for anyone.

Our Founder

Laurie M. Tisch

Laurie Tisch founded the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund in 2007, building upon her decades of experience serving on boards, building organizations, and developing partnerships. She is Co-Chair of the campaign committee for the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, a trustee and past Chair of the Whitney Museum of American Art and a Vice Chair at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts as well as a Trustee of the Aspen Institute and a co-owner and member of the Board of Directors of the New York Football Giants.

Our History

Creation of the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund

Founded by philanthropist Laurie M. Tisch, building upon her decades of leadership in nonprofits and civic affairs

2007

2007

Our History

Launch of national service initiatives and NYC service year programs

Began 10 years of support for public service initiatives in New York City with the Mayor’s NYC Service programs and with Be the Change and its ServiceNation movement- building campaigns.

2008

2008

Our History

Rollout of NYC Green Cart Initiative

Began a multi-year partnership with the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the Mayor’s Office of Food Policy to create a new network of street vendors to increase access to fresh fruits and vegetables in high-poverty neighborhoods with limited availability of healthy foods.

2008

2008

Our History

Launch of Healthy Food & Community Change

Launched a 5-year, $15 million commitment to advance novel strategies to increase access, availability, affordability, and knowledge of healthy foods and promote healthy choices, specifically targeting programs in high-need neighborhoods and creating hubs of activities and community engagement.

2013

2013

Our History

Launch of Arts in Health

Announced a $10 million initiative to support organizations that utilize the arts as a tool for healing and for building understanding of critical societal issues such as mental health stigma and trauma.

2018

2018

Our History

Launch of New York City Health + Hospitals Arts in Medicine

Launched a partnership with New York City Health + Hospitals to expand the hospital system’s Arts in Medicine programs serving health care staff, patients, and communities in sites across the City.

2019

2019

Our History

COVID Response funding

The Illumination Fund undertook three strategies to respond to the pandemic: coordinating with other funders to identify needs and gaps and to amplify collective efforts; bolstering the work of long-time grantees to help them pivot, and addressing the disproportionate impact on low-income communities.

2020

2020
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2008
2008
2013
2018
2019
2020
Our Staff

Decades of expertise spanning foundations, corporate philanthropy and nonprofits across diverse program areas

The Illumination Fund has a staff of three seasoned professionals with more than 50 years of collective experience in philanthropy and related fields. Executive Director Rick Luftglass’s career has included private foundations, nonprofit organizations and corporate philanthropy, has consulted for government agencies, and has expertise that spans health care, the arts, education, community and economic development, housing, urban history, and immigrant communities.

Our Space & Art

A mission-aligned office celebrating creativity

The Illumination Fund’s office is an extension of the foundation’s mission and values, with contemporary art, exhibits by our grantees, and furniture that supports community artisans and social enterprises. The space was designed by BKSK Architects to “illuminate” community and social justice issues and to spark creativity.

Contact Us

Proposal Policy

The Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund explores funding ideas and generates initiatives through targeted research, long-term partnerships, and networking with thought leaders. The foundation accepts proposals by invitation only and does not accept unsolicited requests for funding.