Keeping the Promise
Of A Lifetime
Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. believed to make effective change, efforts should make an impact from the start, yet carry long into the future. To do both, he earmarked a portion of his estate and the eventual sale of his beloved Buffalo Bills to fund his namesake foundation.
The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation began operations in 2015 to continue his legacy — one of generosity and innovation, healthy risk-taking and collaboration, and an unshakable community focus. Today, his hand-picked Life Trustees have determined to focus the efforts of the foundation on Mr. Wilson’s home and adopted home regions of Southeast Michigan and Western New York. With a structure that dictates spend-down of our funds by 2035, we strive to match the urgency that people in need feel every day with community investments that consider both immediate and long-term benefit.
Our time is short. But we have a steadfast commitment to working with community change-makers to make a long-term impact.
The Foundation is guided by three defining and uncompromising values:
We will be driven to be effective in all that we do and to achieve positive sustainable outcomes for our communities.
We will seek to collaborate with fellow grant makers and members of the nonprofit community.
We understand and are willing to accept the risk that accompanies investment in innovative strategies.