Donors Forum is a community of grantmakers dedicated to effective, responsible, and creative philanthropy.

Grantmaker Membership is open to organizations or individuals whose primary activity is the making of grants for charitable purposes, including:

  • Private foundations
  • Community foundations
  • Operating foundations
  • Public foundations
  • Corporate foundations and corporate giving programs
  • Banks or trust companies that administer charitable funds, trust, or foundations that make charitable grants
  • Donor-advised funds and supporting organizations with multiple beneficiaries
  • Federated funds with grantmaking programs
  • Individual donors with multiple charitable-beneficiary organizations


Benefits of Grantmaker Membership

Whether you are a new grantmaker seeking information on how to set up a foundation, a program officer in search of professional development and leadership opportunities, a family foundation trustee who wants to plug into a network of peers, or a seasoned grantmaker needing resources on trends and issues, Donors Forum can help. Grantmaker Membership benefits include:

  • Skill-building workshops on the practice of grantmaking
  • Grantmaker Member-only events featuring national and local experts
  • Issues groups focused on specific areas
  • Member Networks to serve unique needs
  • Unlimited research and reference help from our Library, via phone and email
  • A subscription to our monthly e-newsletter
  • A free set of Donors Forum publications
  • Advocacy and education on key issues with national and local elected officials
  • Access to the Common Grant Application and Report Form
  • Savings on conference calling
  • Opportunities to network with peers and take a leadership role in the philanthropic sector


Join Us!

Download an application here, or contact Robin Berkson, Senior Vice President, Member Services, at or 312-578-0090. Annual dues vary; there is special Grantmaker Member pricing for those new to Donors Forum, for grantmakers outside the Metro-Chicago area of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, and Will counties, and for individual grantmakers.