M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust


Common questions about the Trust

The below list covers the most frequently asked questions about the Trust and our work. Of course, if you don’t see an answer to your specific questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team directly.  For media inquiries related to the Murdock Trust or our grants, please call 360-694-8415 during normal business hours or email our 24-hour-a-day media inbox media@murdocktrust.org.

Background on the Murdock Trust

The M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust is a private foundation that provides grants to nonprofits in the Pacific Northwest. We focus our giving on nonprofits that serve the Pacific Northwest (Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington) in five primary areas: scientific research, education, arts and culture and health and human services.

How did the Murdock Trust get started?

The M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust was established by the last will and testament of the late Melvin Jack Murdock, co-founder of Tektronix, a lifelong resident of the Northwest and dedicated philanthropist.  

How much has the Murdock Trust invested to date?

Since it was founded in 1975, the Murdock Trust has invested more than $1.4 billion in cumulative grant awards and programs to date to more than 3,000 organizations. You can see a small sample of these organizations and the impact they have on local communities in these videos.

What groups does the Murdock Trust support?

The Murdock Trust supports a wide variety of organizations representing the diverse collection of urban, suburban and rural communities that comprise the Pacific Northwest. A small sampling of the groups we support includes, Adelante Mujeres, I Have a Dream Foundation, Days for Girls International, Nature Conservancy of Washington, Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, International Justice Mission, Union Gospel Mission, Reed College, Linfield College, Ruby Valley Hospital, Boys and Girls Club, Grays Harbor Community Hospital, NAMI of Southwest Washington, Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Glendive Medical Center, and Washington STEM Center. You can view a full breakdown of recent grants made by state and year at this link.

Would my nonprofit qualify for a grant?

The Murdock Trust focuses on investing in capacity building programs and projects with nonprofits that serve the Pacific Northwest. You can view full criteria and sample projects for both our Strategic Grants and Initiative Grants on this site. 

I disagree with a grant that you made recently. How can I best address that with your team?

Our grantees represent a diverse collection of backgrounds and geographies. Rural, urban, suburban, different races, different faiths, different political beliefs. We celebrate this diversity because it helps shape the fabric of what makes the Pacific Northwest such a vibrant place to live. This is exemplified in the broad range of nonprofits that have received support from the Trust over the years in the areas of health and human services, education, arts and culture and scientific research.

We carefully vet each of our grantees. If there are factors we may have not considered, we appreciate that being brought to our attention. We understand that we are not perfect, nor are the organizations we seek to serve, and we take all feedback seriously and welcome opportunities to exchange ideas and perspectives with those who express concern.

In recent years, we have experienced a small collection of political advocacy groups misrepresent a small handful of our grants to advance an ulterior agenda. We have previously addressed these misrepresentations on our blog. For additional questions about our grantmaking, please feel free to email us directly.

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The Trust guides nonprofit organizations through every level of their development through grants and other resources.

The Trust has a wealth of knowledge and experience that can make all the difference to you and your organization.