MacArthur is committed to Chicago, our headquarters and our home. The Foundation seizes opportunities to work locally as an expression of civic commitment and because being rooted in Chicago yields a deeper understanding of issues faced by urban areas and how to address them.

Our Grantmaking in Chicago

Since 1978, MacArthur has invested nearly $1.1 billion in Chicago. Grants have supported more than 1,300 organizations and individuals in the region.

MacArthur awards $10 million annually to more than 300 arts and culture groups in the Chicago region, including theaters, dance groups, music organizations, visual art programs, film centers, museums, and libraries.

The Foundation has invested more than $200 million to support community and economic development, increase opportunities for low-income individuals and families, and prevent youth violence in Chicago neighborhoods.

In collaboration with partners in the region, MacArthur seeks to preserve and expand Chicago’s stock of affordable rental housing. The Foundation also played a major role in supporting Chicago’s historic plan to transform public housing high-rises into mixed-income communities.

Chicago is home to three innovation sites for MacArthur’s digital media and learning work, which aims to support positive change in American education through creative approaches to learning.

Through its Models for Change initiative, the Foundation has invested more than $140 million in efforts to create models of juvenile justice reform through work in key states, including Illinois.

The Foundation’s policy research initiative includes special projects on the nation’s fiscal future—with a focus on states and localities, including Illinois—and immigration-related issues in the Chicago area.

MacArthur’s offices are in the historic Marquette Building. Completed in 1895, the 17-story building is one of Chicago’s earliest skyscrapers, and an example of the renowned Chicago School of Architecture. MacArthur was pleased to support its restoration and preservation and maintains a free exhibit in the lobby area that features information about the building’s architecture, as well as the work and history of the Foundation.

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International Connections Fund Celebration

You are invited to the announcement and celebration of recipients of MacArthur's new International Connection Fund grants and a tribute to Elspeth Revere, as she leaves MacArthur after 24 years. Read More

What's New

Jack Markowski on Affordable Housing (MacArthur Video) thumbnail

Jack Markowski on Affordable Housing (MacArthur Video)

Jack Markowski, Community Investment Corporation, on preserving the stock of affordable rental housing in Chicago.


Chicago Theatres recognized by the Tony Awards

Chicago Shakespeare Theatre will receive the 2008 Regional Theatre Tony Award. Read More

New Milwaukee Initiative Modeled on New Communities Program

Philanthropist Joseph Zilber announced a new 10-year, $50 million initiative in Milwaukee that is explicitly modeled on the New Communities Program (NCP) in Chicago, which is supported by the Foundation through LISC. The new initiative will ... Read More

Chicago Receives $153 Million to Fight Traffic Congestion

The U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded Chicago $153 million to fund a new approach for transportation improvements that had been recommended by MacArthur grantees Metropolis 2020 and Metropolitan Planning Council. Read More

Remarks by Jonathan Fanton to the Finalists of the Award for State and Local Housing Preservation Leaders

MacArthur President Jonathan Fanton discusses how a renewed national interest in housing, coupled with research like that produced by the Foundation's How Housing Matters initiative, present an opportunity to reform American housing. Read More

Bolstering Success of Chicago Middle-School Students

A program to increase the success of middle-school students in Chicago and bolster their chances of graduating high school was announced at an event at the Orozco Community Academy. Read More

“Getting it Done: New Tools for Communities,” Remarks by Jonathan Fanton at the LISC National Conference

MacArthur President Jonathan Fanton discusses how to tap the significant economic and human potential of urban neighborhoods. Read More

Remarks by Jonathan Fanton at the Announcement of the Integrated Services in Schools Program

MacArthur President Jonathan Fanton discusses the Foundation's partnership with the Local Initiatives Support Corporation to help foster positive change in Chicago's poor but promising neighborhoods. Read More

Increased Support for Chicago Arts and Culture: International Connections Fund

MacArthur is increasing the number of Chicago area arts and culture organizations it supports from 180 to 200 and creating a new $1 million fund to enable its Chicago grantees to increase their international connections. Read More

Remarks by Jonathan Fanton, 30th Anniversary Grantee Reception, Museum of Contemporary Art

MacArthur President Jonathan Fanton announces the creation of a $1 million fund to encourage international exchanges between Foundation grantees and other countries. Read More