Philanthropy beat: Which groups gave most money?

  • Article by: JEAN HOPFENSPERGER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 14, 2011 - 5:28 PM

Which Minnesota foundations and companies gave away the most money to nonprofits last year?

A new report shows that the Target Foundation & Corporation once again tops the list of Minnesota grantmakers, donating $131 million to charities and nonprofits across the nation in 2010.

Rounding out the five biggest spenders were: the McKnight Foundation ($97 million), General Mills Foundation & Corporation ($88 million), Greater Twin Cities United Way ($66 million) and Cargill Corporation & the Cargill Foundation ($61 million).

The rankings come from the Minnesota Council on Foundations, which last week issued its annual report on Minnesota's Top 50 grantmakers. The numbers reflect cash grants made in 2011.

Overall grant spending fell 2 percent from 2010. But the volume of giving to Minnesota nonprofits increased by 1 percent.

"Cash giving by Minnesota's top 50 grantmakers still totals more than $1 billion," said Bill King, president of the Minnesota Council on Foundations. "And the slight increase in dollars staying within our state demonstrates the stability of philanthropic support for Minnesota nonprofits."

The report tabulates charitable giving in different ways. It includes the top 50 Minnesota grantmakers by assets, top 25 Minnesota corporate grantmakers and the top 25 Minnesota private foundations.

It also shows the value of non-cash donations, such as merchandise, services and volunteerism, made by some of Minnesota's biggest companies. The companies reported the information.

Topping that list, again, was Target, donating $57 million in products and services across the country. Meanwhile, 3M Foundation reported $32 million in non-cash donations, General Mills reported $31 million and the Medtronic Foundation and company listed $10 million.

To see the full report, go to

Jean Hopfensperger • 612-673-4511

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