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Arlington Community Foundation is dedicated to helping individuals, families, and businesses unlock the power of philanthropy, so that charitable giving is a deeply meaningful and rewarding experience.

Unlock the power of philanthropy

“We bring ease and creativity to the process of charitable giving, so that you can have a deeply meaningful and rewarding experience.”

Arlington Community Foundation is dedicated to helping individuals, families and businesses unlock the power of philanthropy. Our collaborative, personalized approach connects your core values to a dynamic plan for charitable giving and for evaluating your impact on the causes and organizations that you support.

We are experts in philanthropic planning so that you don’t have to be. Whether it’s working with your professional advisors to maximize the tax efficiency of giving, providing insight and research on community needs and nonprofit organizations, or facilitating meetings to develop and refine your giving strategy, we are here to serve as your go to resource. We bring ease and creativity to the process of charitable giving, so that you can have a deeply meaningful and rewarding experience.

From left to right: Jamee Hood, Christy Cole, Nick Knock, Natalia Muniz, Melissa Jimenez, Anne Vor der Bruegge, Jennifer Owens, Brian Marroquin (Not pictured: Erik Endo). Visit the staff and board page to learn more and contact us.

Philanthropic Advising for Individuals and Families

No family’s needs are exactly the same.

Our planning services are designed to meet the needs of individuals and families across multiple generations at all ages and stages of life.

No family’s needs are exactly the same, so we take the time to get to know you and to identify clear goals and desired outcomes from our work together.

We seek to create a working relationship with you and your family that is both purposeful and fun–one where we celebrate the common ground as well as the differences among family members and where you and your family members can learn and grow together.

Our team draws on resources and tools we have developed over many years of working with individuals and families as well as from our Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy (CAP) and 21/64 facilitation training.

Here are some examples of exercises we may include in family meetings.

Understanding Personal and Shared Values

Understanding and defining values provides a solid foundation for developing philanthropic goals and making decisions about new giving opportunities. Values can also serve as a lens for evaluating the impact of your philanthropic investments. Using a simple deck of “values cards,” our first step is for each family member to identify their most deeply held personal values. Then, we work together to identify the shared values of a couple or family. Our process focuses on developing clarity and understanding about personal and family values and then supporting you as you decide how to align your values with goals for philanthropy.

Translating Values into Vision

Determining if an opportunity to give is aligned with your values is often a first step in building a strategy for philanthropy. Many will go further by creating a mission statement to bring the family’s deepest held values into a statement of purpose, and outlining a vision that defines the outcomes they are working together to achieve. We help families bring ideas into sharper focus as we work together with you to write a mission statement. Some family mission statements are broad in scope while others are narrower. None are etched in stone forever. We encourage families to revisit their mission and vision statement over time in order to ensure that it continues to reflect their values and goals for impact.

Growing Goodness

We know that parents raising children in a resource rich environment are seeking to raise the next generation to be grounded, values-driven, and intrinsically motivated. Our friends at 2164 have identified 10 key elements of raising the next generation. Together, in guided discussion, we’ll explore topics such as cultivating self-esteem, teaching financial literacy, expressing gratitude, conveying the importance of work and much more.

Engaging “Next Gen” donors

Our multi-generation meeting facilitation, starts with building understanding of the unique life experiences and social forces that influence each generation. Then, we work together with our clients to create space for all family members to share their reflections on the family’s philanthropy and to offer new ideas and opportunities for consideration. From this, we work carefully with the family to structure a philanthropic plan that fosters the next generation’s experiences, reflection, and growth.

Legacy Planning

Your charitable legacy should reflect your values, your vision for the future, and the way that you would like to be remembered. ACF brings ease to the process of legacy planning. Through one or more facilitated meetings and optional self-guided work with our legacy planning workbook, we help you create a legacy letter of intent.

With the legacy letter of intent in place at the Community Foundation, you need only have one charitable designation in your will or living trust for your legacy fund at the Community Foundation. The letter of intent will provide specific direction for how funds are to be disbursed and can include immediate distributions as well as funds that may exist for a term of years or in perpetuity.

Legacy LOIs are reviewed with donors every couple of years. Any time a change or update is needed, the LOI can be amended and there is no need to revise the estate planning documents.

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Creating Plans for Giving and Evaluating Impact

Simple or complex, annual or multi-year, we are here for you.

Documenting plans for grantmaking over one or more years creates a framework for decision making. The plan can articulate areas of interest as well as specific organizations or projects slated for support. Additionally, it may include creating a platform for nonprofits to submit ideas to you and assist with evaluation of those ideas relative to your values and goals. Whether your grantmaking process is simple or more involved, we will assist you in creating clear steps for vetting ideas both new and long-supported. On an ongoing basis, we will help you assess whether you accomplished what you set out to do and whether or not to make shifts in your strategy.

Our services include:

Creating a spending plan for the short and/or long term

Planning for a charitable legacy

Drafting a process to gather nonprofit impact ideas

Evaluation of nonprofit ideas and impact analysis

Grant reporting request and evaluation

Site visits to nonprofits and community partners

For More Information

Contact Christy Cole, Director of Philanthropy, at or 703-243-4785×206 to discuss your needs and to receive custom proposal for your review.

(Note: Most services are complimentary for ACF fundholders.)

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An Optometry Officer and a Gentleman
John’s scholarship empowers Arlington students to proudly check “yes” when asked about LGBTQ+ involvement.
“I believe in encouraging leadership at a young age. And having spent 20 wonderful years in Arlington, I want to maintain my connection to it and give back to it.”
Dr. John Whitener
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Love, legislation, and legacy
Using a legacy fund to ensure safe, stable, affordable housing where Arlington seniors can thrive.
“I want this fund to help bring the elderly issue to the table, making it part of how we think about the connections in the community.”
Jeanne Broyhill
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Using a fund to offset the cost of after-school programming in the eight Title 1 elementary schools in Arlington County.
“No matter the activity, students are using this fund and these moments to find and do what they love, and to feel like they belong in the community, both inside and outside the classroom.”
Jennifer Owens, Foundation CEO