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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust Celebrates 40 Years of Impact

$863 million has been granted to organizations in the Pacific Northwest and beyond as of September 2016

Press Release – VANCOUVER, WASHINGTON – Jack Murdock was an entrepreneur and successful business leader who co-founded Tektronix in Portland, Oregon just after World War II. Tektronix’s success allowed Murdock to create the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust with an endowment of $91 million and a mission to enrich the quality of life in the Pacific Northwest. The Trust began issuing grants in 1975 and continues to do so to this day.

Forty years later, the Trust has grown to an endowment of $1 billion, and has maintained a steadfast commitment to Jack Murdock’s mission. “We have the privilege to build on the vision and ideas of Jack Murdock,” said Steve Moore, Executive Director of the Trust. “We are deeply honored to partner with a widely diverse group of people and organizations that share the vision of flourishing communities and making the world a better place.”

Before the Trust’s founding, Jack Murdock was heard saying, “I can’t imagine what the world will be like 40 years from now.” Through his will, he entrusted Murdock staff and Trustees to steward the organization with care, thoughtful planning and purposeful risk. The Trust focuses on providing grants and enrichment programs to organizations seeking to strengthen the region’s educational, social, spiritual and cultural base in creative and sustainable ways. As the Trust begins its 41st year, it is reflecting back on its impact to communities across the region, including:

  • Alaska: Over 260 grants totaling $46.6 million to organizations, as diverse as Koahnic Broadcast Corporation, Alaska Native Heritage Center, Mat-Su Services for Children and Adults and University of Alaska Fairbanks.
  • Idaho: Almost 300 grants totaling $39.5 million to organizations, as diverse as Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Trey McIntyre Project, University of Idaho and Ririe High School.
  • Montana: Over 500 grants totaling $74.7 million to organizations, as diverse as American Prairie Reserve, University of Montana, Hopa Mountain and Carroll College.
  • Oregon: Nearly 2,500 grants totaling $348.7 million to organizations, as diverse as Hacienda Community Development Corporation, Happy Canyon Foundation, Portland Japanese Garden and Warner Pacific College.
  • Washington: Almost 1,800 grants totaling $256.5 million to organizations, as diverse as American Lake Veterans Golf Course, Center for Wooden Boats, Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center and Washington First Robotics.
  • Nationally and in British Columbia: Nearly 650 grants totaling $97.3 million to organizations, as diverse as Barnabas Family Ministries, Prison Fellowship Ministries, All-Star Orchestra and Trinity Western University.

In August 2016, in celebration of the 40th anniversary, the Trust rolled out an updated website and brand designed to better serve organizations in today’s digital environment. Although the organization has evolved and may look a bit different than it did in 1975, it still adheres to Murdock’s core focus areas including partnering with organizations that work in education, arts and culture, science research and health and human services.

“As we look to the future, and our next forty years, we honor our founder, our heritage, and our partners. Our fruit grows on the trees of the non-profits and organizations with whom we have the privilege to partner,” said Moore.

About M. J. Murdock Charitable Trust

M. J. Murdock Charitable Trust, created by the will of the late Melvin J. (Jack) Murdock, provides grants to organizations in five states of the Pacific Northwest – Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington – that seek to strengthen the region’s educational and cultural base in creative and sustainable ways. Since its inception in 1975, the Trust has awarded nearly 6,000 grants totaling more than $863 million. It is one of the most active regional or national foundations working in the Pacific Northwest.

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