Mission-driven Impact Investing for Small- to Mid-sized Family Foundations, a Case Study

Cyrus Kharas May 14, 2021

This session will present the Richard W. Goldman Family Foundation’s (RWGFF) journey – successes and stumbles – to establish a mission-aligned impact investing portfolio from its inception, through landscaping and pilot investments, to its current portfolio, which consists of commitments in education-focused VC funds, community development financial institutions (CDFIs), and direct equity investments, totaling $3M (3.7%) of the $80M corpus. All RWGFF’s grantmaking and impact investments work to increase access to education, health, and financial resources for families with young children.


The panel will include a foundation board member, a RWGFF investee, and a foundation staff member (from Arabella Advisors, a consulting firm serving as foundation staff). Panelists will discuss RWGFF’s decision to pursue impact investing, its decision to structure investments as mission-related (MRIs) rather than program-related (PRIs), its decision to begin by dedicating 5% of its corpus to impact investing, and the sourcing and closing of the investments themselves.


RWGFF is a compelling case study for similar-sized foundations hoping to complement their existing grant portfolios with impact investing, thereby amplifying their impact.



Meta Themes

  • Impact Investing


early childhood, families, health, family foundation, COVID relief

Purpose and Desired Outcome

Participants will come away with key questions to consider, important lessons-learned, and a model of how they might implement something similar at their own institutions. Crucially, participants will understand how to move from interest to action.


  • Allocators (Family Offices, HNW Individuals, Foundations)


  • NameDaniel S Goldman
  • TitleBoard Member
  • OrganizationRichard W Goldman Family Foundation
  • StatusInvited
  • NameCyrus Kharas
  • TitleHead of Impact Investing
  • OrganizationRichard W Goldman Family Foundation
  • StatusConfirmed
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