Foundation Update

Foundation Update
AJFF Re-Launches Website

The A.J. Fletcher Foundation recently revamped its website, re-launching the new look in time for its Board of Directors meeting in late November. AJFF Graphic Designer and Website Manager Louise Orr spearheaded the project to enhance the graphic design of and streamline its content. opens a new window on the goings-on in the Fletcher Foundation.

The new site includes monthly reports, grant information, history, archives and a listing of board and staff members. It also offers visitors a complete overview of the Foundation, as well as links to its major partners, the Fletcher Opera Institute and the NonprofitXpress, and to numerous grantee organizations.

Fletcher Foundation Pauses To Enhance New Direction
Despite the downturn in the economy, the A.J. Fletcher Foundation continues to pay out grants to recipients throughout the state of North Carolina. The organization, however, is in the process of taking some time to replenish its funds and regroup based on the establishment of the A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute this year.

No new proposals for grants are being accepted by the AJFF for at least the next six months, as has been the practice for the past several. The Foundation will still pay out about $3 million in grants already promised this year. It remains as ever a vital, living organization.

“The Foundation is going to move in new directions,” said AJFF Executive Director Tom McGuire. He reiterated, though, new directions do not mean changing the mission of the past, but simply adding new ways to fulfill that mission in the future.

A.J. Fletcher established the Foundation specifically to support the National Opera Company, and McGuire said that the Foundation wants to “ensure that A.J. Fletcher’s goals will always be met.” Therefore, the AJFF created the A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute at the North Carolina School of the Arts. The National Opera Company joined with a permanent institution, the School of the Arts is part of the University of N.C. system, to ensure A.J. Fletcher’s opera company will continue. With a $10 million endowment over ten years, the Foundation established the Institute for perpetuity and now looks towards a whole new world of needs to explore.

One such project currently underway is the renovation of the Boylan Pierce Building in downtown Raleigh. The 90-year-old building will open its doors to non-profit organizations as tenants after being empty for over 10 years. The AJFF did the same to next door sister structure, the Briggs Hardware Building, which now houses the Foundation, the Raleigh City Museum, and the North Carolina Special Olympics. McGuire says these projects will help revitalize downtown Raleigh, and fulfill the Foundation’s goal of providing support for the non-profit sector.

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