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Our Story

Our Story

More than 20 years ago, the Garden State’s philanthropic community began meeting informally to discuss issues of importance to grantmakers. In the late 1980s, fueled by the observation that philanthropy is more effective when grantmakers have a forum to communicate, exchange information, and take part in continuing education, CNJG was born.

By 1998, CNJG was an independent 501(c)(3) organization with a full-time executive director and approximately 80 members. In the years since, membership has grown to include more than 130 foundations, corporate giving programs, government and other public grantmaking organizations. Informal gatherings of likeminded individuals and organizations have been replaced by robust, highly valued seminars, convenings, workshops and conferences.

Extending Philanthropy's Contribution

Over the years, CNJG also actively engaged in a number of landmark initiatives including commissioning the first study of giving in the Garden State, NJ Gives, the first study of nonprofit health insurance provider conversions to for profit corporations, New Jersey Together (a major funder collaborative centered on youth development), a landmark effort looking at the systemic, long term fiscal challenges facing all levels of government in New Jersey entitled Facing Our Future, the creation of the Community Foundation of South Jersey, and creation of the Newark Philanthropic Liaison position within our state’s largest city administration.

View our CNJG Through the Years pictorial.