2023 Grant Announcements

The 15th year of grantmaking at the Maddox Fund was an exercise in unlearning. Instead of reverting to traditional practices, we stretched ourselves to live more intentionally into our vision of a world in which people and planet flourish together in regenerative systems free from oppression and threat. Unlearning isn’t easy. Imagining a liberated world hidden behind a veil seems impossible, but with practice we have a chance to glimpse that longed-for future for which we strive.

This year the Grant Committee noted that words like budgets, outcomes and measurements gave way to the more relational language of trust, co-creating, healing and justice. These North Stars were centered in every discussion, as was our priority to fund more organizations that have been historically and systemically starved for the funding they need to bring about change in their communities.  Our funding areas—youth and the natural environment—remained unchanged.

In the spirit of transparency, you can find the last 5 years of grantmaking on our website—including 2023. So that data can become knowledge that transforms our actions, we offer this analysis of our 2023 grants to date in comparison to our 2018 grantmaking:

 Total GrantsAdvocacyBIPOC-led
2018$2.1 million8% of funding17% of funding
2023 YTD$1.4 million33% of funding77% of funding

The Maddox Fund will also have two participatory grant processes later in the year. $100,000 will be allocated to the community by HBCU students and an additional $100,000 will be distributed to area nonprofits by LGBTQI+ young people. To stay informed, follow us on ​Facebook and Instagram.

The Maddox Fund was disappointed that we did not receive more applications to support LGBTQI+ led advocacy organizations working with young people — only 4% of our funding year-to-date went to address this pressing need.   For that reason,   the Maddox Fund has set aside an additional $100,000 to support LGBTQI+ advocacy. Clearly, a mere 4% won’t bring justice for a community under attack.

Liberation is only as permanent as our practice. The Grant Committee knows there is more internal work required to ensure that equity, justice and liberation are normalized, formalized and woven into the fabric of the Fund. As a learning organization, we are convinced of and committed to the relentless pursuit of that practice.

2023 RFP Grant Partners

Organization Name Grant
Conexion Americas $ 40,000
Equity Alliance $ 60,000
Futuro Inc $ 40,000
Launch Pad $ 55,000
Music City Construction Careers Inc $ 20,000
Nashville Freedom School Partnership $ 50,000
Nashville International Center for Empowerment $ 30,000
One Willco $ 30,000
Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi $ 30,000
Salama Urban Ministries $ 40,000
Southern Movement Committee $ 60,000
Sunrise Movement $ 50,000
Tennessee Educators Of Color Alliance $ 62,000
Tennessee Immigrant And Refugee Rights Coalition $ 50,000
Tennessee State University Foundation (Environmental Career Exploration) $ 25,000
Tennessee State University Foundation (Nashville Environmental Justice Initiative) $ 40,000
The Education Trust $ 25,000
Waterbear $ 25,000
Why We Can’t Wait $ 30,000
Women of Color Collaborative $ 30,000

2023 Transgender Day of Visibility

March 31st is the International Transgender Day of Visibility. Maddox celebrates the joy and resilience of our trans and non-binary siblings. Today is a good day to learn more about gender identities outside your own and here are some resources to explore:

2023 Grant Application is now open!

The Maddox Fund is pleased to announce that our 2023 grant application is now available online. While our focus areas remain Youth and the Environment, our eligibility requirements and priorities have changed to reflect our racial justice commitment.  The deadline for applications over $30,000 is March 1, 2023.

If you would like to discuss your organization’s work or program with a Maddox staff member, you can schedule a time to meet through the links below:

You can always provide anonymous feedback  to the Maddox Fund.  We are interested in your thoughts, ideas and honest critique. To keep up with opportunities,  follow Maddox on FacebookInstagram, and LinkedIn. We remain thankful to all Middle Tennessee nonprofits. You are at the heart of the community we call home.

2023 Grantmaking

Here is an update on our 2023 grantmaking processes. Check out the following pages for more info:

Sign up for one of our virtual Q&A sessions in October or set up some time with one of our staff: joseph@maddoxfund.org or kaki@maddoxfund.org.

Where We’re Headed: Learning and Unlearning

As we pilot our re-designed grant program, it is tempting to recount the Maddox racial equity journey with you—charting our work from 2017 to now, both our learning and unlearning. But instead, I’ll point you to the timeline on our website and the series of blog links that appear below. Suffice it to say, change has come through intentional and ongoing struggle.

What will remain the same going forward is our mission—to make Middle Tennessee a better place through partnerships that improve the lives of young people and protect the natural environment. What will change are our grant strategies and practices in hopes of contributing to a more equitable, just and liberating tomorrow.

Sharing June 2022 Partner Meeting Feedback

2022 is a year of rethinking, reimagining and redesigning the Maddox Fund’s grant program.

Input from the community was essential. During the month of June, we heard from our partners through in-person design meetings, virtual gatherings and an online survey. More than 75% of our nonprofit partners participated in this crucial process. Thank you in advance for your generosity and guidance.

Maddox welcomed feedback on how we should conceptualize our grantmaking areas, youth and wildlife conservation, going forward. Participants were asked to review a draft document and rank priorities. Below are those priorities in community rank order.


  1. Youth Services
  2. Post-secondary Access
  3. Youth & Education Advocacy
  4. Out-of-School Learning
  5. Education Leadership Pipeline Programs

Wildlife Conservation

  1. Community-based Nature Programs
  2. Conservation Advocacy
  3. Environmental Leadership Pipeline Programs
  4. Hunting and Fishing

We also asked our partners what Maddox should be asking itself. Three themes emerged:

  • How does Maddox understand its leadership role in relationship to other foundations, donors and the overall nonprofit well-being?
  • How can we create connections among our partners?
  • How does class analysis play into our grantmaking?

Partners also asked Maddox to:

  • Offer clarifying language (i.e., clarify that the interest in leadership programs is to diversify conservation and education leadership pipelines)
  • Offer specific input on what we do and do not support

The work now returns to the Maddox Grant Committee to integrate community input into the 2023 grant program. We anticipate the following schedule:

  • Fall 2022—Grant redesign presentation to community
  • December 2022—Application goes live
  • March 1, 2023—Applications due
  • May 8, 2023—Grants approved
  • July 1, 2023—Grant payments made

If you would like to share your thoughts or provide any additional feedback, you can email Maddox staff or call the office at 615-385-1006. You may leave feedback anonymously at anytime by using this link.  

Seeking Input from Partners

Over the past few weeks, we have heard from 50 nonprofit partners with input on our redesigned 2023 grant process and priorities. You have made us think, asked essential questions and ranked our future focus areas. Thank you.

Before the Maddox Grant Committee meets to put the final touches on the 2023 grant program, we are inviting your final thoughts and input.  All input before June 30 will be part of the Grant Committee’s conversation.

You can access the slides from the recent partner meetings here.  You can also use the Mentimeter survey to share your thoughts and to rank the sub-categories under Youth and Conservation.  All input before June 30 will be part of the Grant Committee’s conversation.

As always, if you have questions, please reach out to Kaki or Joseph directly:

  • kaki@maddoxfund.org
  • joseph@maddoxfund.org

As a reminder, we have also created a permanent feedback button on our website so you can share your thoughts anonymously at any time.