About ICF

The Idaho Community Foundation is a nonprofit public foundation that serves the entire state. It was founded in 1988 by John Fery and other corporate officers, philanthropists and community leaders. Read more about ICF’s history.


To enrich the quality of life throughout Idaho.


Philanthropic Leadership: By bringing people and resources together, we make an impact in all of Idaho's 44 counties.

Collaboration: We learn from and work with others in partnership to better understand Idaho’s greatest needs and advance community-driven solutions.

Inclusion: We believe that our philanthropy should mirror the people of Idaho, and that diversity and equity are essential to our work.

Responsive: We build community philanthropy by listening to Idahoans and being adaptable to the region's changing needs.

Stewardship: We preserve donor intent and the resources entrusted to us across generations.

Enduring: We have deep roots in Idaho and have been building community philanthropy since 1988.

What is a Community Foundation?

A community foundation provides a way for people of all income levels to make a lasting difference in their community. Community foundations help build and strengthen the communities they serve by bringing together people and organizations to improve the quality of life through collective giving.

Community foundations are place-based and serve a specific geographic area. The Idaho Community Foundation serves all 44 counties in Idaho. Community foundations are recognized by the IRS as a tax-exempt 501(c)3 nonprofits, so gifts to community foundations are eligible for tax deductions.

Individuals, families, businesses and other nonprofits can establish permanent or temporary charitable funds at a community foundation to provide support for the causes and organizations they care about most. The Idaho Community Foundation offers several types of funds to suit just about any charitable intent.

The Idaho Community Foundation also offers grants to nonprofits, schools and other organizations and provides scholarships to students. Money for grants and scholarships comes from charitable funds established by donors.

Community foundations are conveners and can help bring people together in partnerships to discuss important issues.

Today there are more than 1,600 community foundations around the world serving as stewards of charitable giving and philanthropy.

Background: None - Caption: Community Foundation AccreditedThe Idaho Community Foundation is confirmed in compliance with the National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations.

Watch a short (1:35) video about the work of community foundations.

Idaho Community Foundation History

About the Idaho Community Foundation – History in Brief
The Idaho Community Foundation was established in 1988 when the Whittenberger Foundation, a private foundation based in Caldwell, approached Boise Cascade Chairman and CEO John Fery with an idea to build philanthropy in Idaho. They agreed that the state might benefit from a community foundation because there were few foundations whose giving benefited Idaho.

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Together, they developed a vision for a broader, deeper source of charitable funding to enrich the quality of life throughout Idaho and set about garnering support from businesses, individuals and communities across the state (see list below).

It was known from the beginning that it would be challenging to establish a statewide organization in a state with the cultural and geographic differences of Idaho. To overcome the idea that this was a Boise-only foundation, the founders required statewide representation on the board and ensured that distributions from the unrestricted funds, now called Forever Idaho Funds, would benefit the entire state.

In 1991, the Idaho Community Foundation made its first-ever grant awards – 31 grants totaling $164,000.

Today and tomorrow

Today, ICF has grown to more than 630 charitable funds. It has over $218 million in assets and an endowment of $161.2 million. Since 1991, we’ve granted more than $142 million. 

As the Idaho Community Foundation entered its 30th year, ICF leaders began to focus on and refine the foundation’s community impact. A statewide listening tour uncovered that while Idaho’s regions are unique and take pride in their individual identities, they also share similar concerns for their communities. Family homelessness, mental and physical health, educational opportunities and access to services are issues shared across Idaho. These became ICF’s Areas of Impact.

The Areas of Impact were brought into sharp focus when the coronavirus pandemic struck Idaho in 2020. ICF quickly partnered with the Idaho Nonprofit Center, United Way of Treasure Valley and United Ways throughout the state to create the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund for Idaho.

With early support from the fund’s Lead Funding Donors – Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health, Micron Foundation and Micron’s Boise employees, M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust and Wells Fargo – as well as hundreds of individuals, families, businesses and corporations throughout the region, the fund collected and distributed more than $2 million to community organizations helping those most affected by the pandemic.

ICF learned and grew from its experience with the coronavirus pandemic. The incredibly valuable local knowledge of the Rapid Response Grant Panels, the amazing work nonprofits were able to accomplish when they received large, unrestricted grants and the strong philanthropic partnerships we developed, led to changes when the pandemic subsided.

Today, we look forward to the future of the Idaho Community Foundation as we bring people and resources together for local needs so that all Idahoans live in thriving communities.

On behalf of grateful communities across the state, the Idaho Community Foundation extends its appreciation to the Founding Donors, who made a big idea become a reality.


Founding Donors

Albertson’s, Inc.
Boise Cascade Corporation
Northwest Area Foundation
The Whittenberger Foundation

Amalgamated Sugar
Arthur Andersen LLP
Basic American, Inc.
Boise Family YMCA (now Treasure Valley YMCA)
Boise Philharmonic Association, Inc.
Charles Stewart Mott Foundation
Coeur d’Alene Mines
Daugherty Foundation
Deloitte & Touche
First Interstate Bank
First Security Bank of Idaho, N.A.
FMC Foundation
Gannett Foundation/Idaho Statesman
Global Travel
Green Giant/Pillsbury
Hecla Mining, Inc.
Hewlett-Packard Company
Idaho Power Company
Intermountain Gas Industries Foundation
Key Bank of Idaho
KTVB Channel 7
Merrill Lynch & Co. Foundation
Morrison Knudsen Company Foundation
Park Price Motor Company
Potlatch Corporation
Steele-Reese Foundation
The Terteling Company, Inc.
U S WEST Communications
U.S. Bank
Union Pacific Foundation
Washington Trust Bank
Wells Fargo Bank
West One Bancorp

Founding Donors: Individuals, Couples and Families
J.A. and Kathryn Albertson
Harry Bettis
Joan Chesbro
Jim and Barbara Cimino
Robert and Mary Evans
Roger and Sybil Ferguson
John B. and Delores L. Fery
Donald and Gretchen Fraser
Linda Grable-Curtis
Tom and Alice Hennessey
John and Geri Herbert
William R. Hewlett
Richard M. and Mary B. Hormaechea
Lewis Hower
Nick and Sara Ifft
Kenlon P. and Carol J. Johnson
D. Whitman and Paula Jones
Edward Keane
Sara M. Maas
H.F. and Colleen Magnuson
Warren E. McCain
Jane and Arthur Oppenheimer
David and Vaniece Petso
Ethel B. "Stevie" Rawlinson
Robert and Dorothy Rebholtz
Bob and Carol Reed
Earl C. Reynolds Jr.
Tom, Sheila, John and Joy Richards
Jim and Bette Roper
John Roper
John and Karen Rosholt
J.R. Simplot
Carmelita G. Spencer
Harry B. Turner
Miles and Virginia Willard

Other Support
Joan G. Adkins, Arthur Andersen & Co.
Millis Anderson
Larry R. Bird, Deloitte and Touche
Kristy Browning
Karla Haun, Boise Cascade
Roger Martell, Deloitte & Touche
John McHugh, Magnuson & McHugh
Herb Pellinen, Boise Cascade
J. Kirk Sullivan, Boise Cascade
Susan Reeb, Boise Cascade
John Runft, Runft, Coffin & Matthews

Past Presidents and Board Chairs

Idaho Community Foundation Presidents and CEOs
1988-1993 – Dr. Sally J. Thomas
1993-1996 – Steve Guerber
1996-2004 – Alice E. Hennessey
2004-2008 – Cathy Silak
2008-2009 – Alice E. Hennessey (interim)
2009-2016 – Bob Hoover
2016-2021 – Karen Bilowith
2021-Current – Steve Burns

Idaho Community Foundation Board Chairs
1988-1997 – John Fery, Boise
1997-2000 – Park Price III, Idaho Falls
2000-2002 – Roger Martell, Boise
2002-2004 – Dolores S. Chapman, McCall
2004-2006 – Duane Jacklin, Coeur d’Alene
2006-2008 – Douglas R. Nelson, Idaho Falls
2008-2010 – Joseph W. Marshall, Boise
2010-2012 – Sandra L.S. Fery, Boise
2012-2014 – Michael McBride, Twin Falls
2015-2017 – Bill Berg, Sagle
2017-2019 – Sue Thilo, Hayden Lake
2019-2021 – Steve Carr, Idaho Falls
2021-2023 – Candi Allphin, Boise

Friends of the Foundation

Since 1995, the Idaho Community Foundation has selected a Friend of the Foundation, which recognizes exceptional contributions to the success of ICF.

Sue and Tom Thilo, Hayden Lake

Dean Buffington, Boise
John St. Clair, Idaho Falls
Marion Shinn, Lewiston
Tricia Swartling, Ketchum

Bob and Leslee Hoover, Coeur d’Alene
Jim Kissler and Nicole Kissler, Boise
John and Karen Rosholt, Twin Falls
Alan Van Orden, Pocatello

Kenlon and Carol Johnson, Idaho Falls
Mike and Jan McBride, Twin Falls
Esther Simplot, Boise
Nancy Sue and Marc Wallace, Hayden

Treasure Valley Family YMCA
Richard and Jill Jurvelin, Coeur d’Alene
Harv Bickett, Gooding
F.M., Anne G., and Beverly B. Bistline Foundation, Pocatello

Peter and Carolyn Johnson, Boise
Grangeville Community Foundation
The Purdy Family and Reidel Family, Picabo
The Chesbro Family, Idaho Falls

Pete and Freda Cenarrusa, Boise
Gladys Schneidmiller and Gary Schneidmiller, Post Falls
Hazel Rose, Idaho Falls

Joe and Patty Marshall, Boise
Duane and Susan Jacklin, Post Falls
Lex and Celia Kunau, Burley
Virginia Willard, Idaho Falls

Irv and Trudy Littman, Boise
Doug and Billie Nelson, Idaho Falls
Richard and Donna Hutter, Sandpoint
Tom King, Burley

Bill “Action” and Jackie Jackson, Boise
Ralph and Mary Lynn Hartwell, Idaho Falls
The Women’s Gift Alliance, Kootenai County
The Wood River Women’s Charitable Foundation, Blaine County

Robert I & Barbara Troxell, Boise

ICF Steering Committee
The Foundation’s Incorporators
ICF's Founding Donors

The Kissler Family Foundation, Boise

Roger Martell, Boise

Steele-Reese Foundation, New York

Alice E. Hennessey, Boise

James H. Roper, Burley

J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation

Park Price III, Idaho Falls

John Fery, Boise

Nick Ifft, Pocatello
Margaret Gigray, Caldwell

Warren McCain, Boise

Jane and Arthur Oppenheimer, Boise

Miles Willard, Idaho Falls

John Chapman, Boise