Service to the American South.
Since 1934, the Sullivan Foundation has been inspiring young people to lead lives of integrity through a commitment to placing community service above self-interest. Our approach to this mission has three components:
Building a Network of Change.
Our foundation is built upon a network of partnerships with 70 schools in 11 states around the American South. While Sullivan schools come in many different shapes and sizes, most are smaller, liberal arts institutions with a proud Southern tradition. In any given year, more than 250,000 students attend the schools that make up the Sullivan family.
From Service to Social Entrepreneurship.
Our work centers on a comprehensive theory of change designed to promote engagement at all levels – with individuals as well as with communities small and large. We encourage students and faculty to develop their capacities for service and we promote social entrepreneurship as a tool for addressing core societal issues. In short, we champion innovative approaches to solving social, economic, and environmental problems across a broad spectrum – from education reform to food deserts, microfinance to youth empowerment. That’s the Sullivan spirit.
We’ve been at this for awhile.
Our history dates back to the 1850s, when Algernon Sydney Sullivan, a lawyer and Southern transplant living in New York City, made a name for himself by using his intelligence, wealth, and social status to help those who were less fortunate. After his death, the New York Southern Society – a social organization founded by Sullivan – sought to honor him in the only way that he would have found acceptable: by honoring others. Thus, the Sullivan award was born in 1890. The Sullivan Foundation was established in 1930 to ensure the continuity of that mission.