About Us
IEEE Foundation Overview

What is the IEEE Foundation?
A Brief History
Management of IEEE Foundation
Officers of the IEEE Foundation
Board Meetings and Staff Support
IEEE Foundation Standing Committees


The IEEE Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation established in 1973 in the State of New York "exclusively to support the scientific and educational purposes of IEEE." The scope and structure of the IEEE Foundation has evolved as described in the next section: "A Brief History." Today it cultivates relationships and resources to advance IEEE’s core purpose to foster technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity.

In 2012 IEEE Foundation managed and invested $35.3 million through more than 130 donor designated funds for education, innovation and preservation. Awarding nearly $630,000 through 29 new grants, the IEEE Foundation provided nearly $3.3 million in overall program support. Nearly 9,000 donors contributed to the IEEE Foundation in 2012, enabling funds to support programs that motivate students and young professionals, help improve conditions in underserved communities and celebrate the extraordinary contributions and careers of those in our community who, through their technical advances, have improved the quality of our lives.


Initially, the IEEE Foundation's role was to accept and administer charitable donations for IEEE Awards. As the generous giving of the IEEE membership increased, the IEEE Foundation expanded its scope to giving grants to worthy projects. In 1989-90, the Trusts of Alfred and Gertrude Goldsmith, valued at approximately US$4 million, were bequeathed to the IEEE Foundation. Then, in 1998 to stay true to the original spirit of Andrew Carnegie's gift that ultimately established the United Engineering Center (UEC), the IEEE Board of Directors voted to contribute the US$7.6 million net proceeds from the sale of the UEC to the IEEE Foundation. Today, the IEEE Foundation grows and expands its ability to support activities of importance to IEEE thanks to the generosity of our donors.


The IEEE Foundation Board of Directors is responsible for the management and direction of the IEEE Foundation. The IEEE Foundation's Certificate of Incorporation, Bylaws, Policy & Procedures Manual, and Operations Manual - together with all applicable laws of the United States and the State of New York - govern the IEEE Foundation Board. The role of the IEEE Foundation Board includes policy formulation, fundraising and administrative oversight. It also has fiduciary responsibility for the protection and prudent and proper use of the IEEE Foundation's financial assets.

Members of the IEEE Foundation Board must be active members of IEEE; and one third must be or have been members of the IEEE Board of Directors. The members consist of persons elected as IEEE Foundation Directors and ex-officio and corresponding members. Ex-officio and corresponding members have the rights and privileges of directors except the right to vote. Ex-officio members are the IEEE Executive Director, President of the IEEE Canadian Foundation, Chair of the IEEE Awards Board, Chair of the Life Members Committee, Chair of the IEEE History Committee, and liaison member of the Trustees of IEEE-HKN. An IEEE corresponding member is appointed by the IEEE Treasurer to coordinate financial activities of IEEE and the IEEE Foundation.


Officers serve one-year terms beginning on 1 January following their election. The Officers are the President (and CEO), Secretary, Treasurer (and CFO), VP Development, and VP Grants. The Past President serves as an officer during the first year after his or her last term.


The IEEE Foundation Board typically meets three times each year in March, June, and November. The June meeting is held in conjunction with the IEEE Honors Ceremony and the other two meetings are held at the IEEE Operations Center in Piscataway, New Jersey, USA.

Questions and requests regarding IEEE Foundation Board meetings and administrative matters should be directed to foundation-office@ieee.org.


Audit Committee (chaired and populated by IEEE Foundation directors who are not officers) selects a firm to audit the IEEE Foundation's financial records, reviews the audit report, reports its findings to the entire IEEE Foundation Board, and otherwise performs the duties specified in its Charter.

Development Committee (chaired by the VP Development and populated by IEEE Foundation Board members) oversees and provides guidance to IEEE Development Office activities that relate to IEEE Foundation responsibilities, and Committee members participate in the fundraising process.

Finance Committee (chaired by the Treasurer and populated by IEEE Foundation Board members) oversees the finances and investments of the IEEE Foundation. It prepares the annual operating budget and spending model and monitors performance throughout the year.

Grants Committee (chaired by the VP Grants and populated by IEEE Foundation Board and IEEE Life Members Committee members) reviews all grant applications received by the IEEE Foundation and recommends to the IEEE Foundation Board and IEEE Life Members Committee which ones should be accepted or rejected.

Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee (chaired and populated by IEEE Foundation directors) oversees the governance of the IEEE Foundation and nominates candidates for director and officer positions.

IEEE Life Members Committee raises money for the IEEE Life Members Fund and has been delegated responsibility for disbursing this money to support philanthropic activities of interest to IEEE Life Members. It is a joint committee of IEEE acting through the Member and Geographic Activities Board and the IEEE Foundation. The IEEE Foundation Board appoints one of its directors to serve as a liaison representative to the Life Members Committee. All other members (including the Chair) are appointed by the IEEE Member and Geographic Activities Board.

Trustees of IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu establishes long-term financial and fundraising goals for the IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu Restricted Fund. Members are appointed by the IEEE Foundation upon recommendation of the IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu Board of Governors. At least one member shall be a sitting member of the IEEE Board of Directors.