About GAR

Community Initiatives

In recent years, GAR has helped initiate projects in response to persistent community needs. The following is a brief description of many of those initiatives.

GAR and Knight Foundation Nonprofit Board Study 

GAR Foundation and the Knight Foundation conducted a study of the makeup of nonprofit boards in the Akron area. This study was administered by BVU: The Center for Nonprofit Excellence. Read the results.

Summit County Arts & Culture Initiative

The Summit County Arts & Culture Initiative was created in 2014 following a study commissioned by GAR Foundation and The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The study assessed the landscape of the arts and culture sector in Summit County. Read the findings here.


Summit Education Initiative

Summit Education Initiative (SEI) was created in 1996 by a group of leaders in the community from local business, foundations and higher education. Its mission is to engage and mobilize the people and resources in Summit County to significantly improve schooling and learning for all children.

Learn More About SEI

BVU: The Center for Nonprofit Excellence

BVU: The Center for Nonprofit Excellence (BVU:CNE) is a capacity-building resource organization that launched in 2001. It was founded by community leaders from both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. Its mission is to nurture excellence in nonprofit leadership, management, and governance practices through training, partnerships, and referrals to the highest-quality services and resources.

Learn More About BVU:CNE

The Fund for Our Economic Future

The Fund for Our Economic Future is an unprecedented collaboration of more than 50 member private and corporate foundations seeking to improve Northeast Ohio’s economy. Through its grant-making activities, the Fund for Our Economic Future supports organizations that have the potential to strengthen the entire region. Launched in 2004, foundations, organizations and individuals have contributed nearly $90 million to the Fund. 

The Fund collaborates with others in the 16-county region to improve the region’s economic competitiveness in four action areas:

  • Business growth and attraction
  • Talent development
  • Growth through racial and economic inclusion
  • Government collaboration and efficiency

Learn More About The Fund