2018 Community Leadership Awards


The San Francisco Foundation’s Community Leadership Awards honor individuals and organizations doing extraordinary work to address the Bay Area’s most pressing challenges.

Please see below for more information about the awards.


Individuals and Organizations

Individuals and nonprofit organizations in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo Counties may be nominated.

Individual nominees from all sectors — government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and corporations — are eligible for these awards. Nominations for emerging and innovative leadership, as well as longstanding accomplishments, are encouraged.

Please note that applicants for the two individual award types (Art and Leadership) must be nominated to apply for an award and may not nominate themselves.

Previous Community Leadership Awardees

Previous Community Leadership Award winners are ineligible. A complete list of past winners is available on The San Francisco Foundation’s website.


There are two award categories for individuals: the Art Award and the Leadership Award. There are also two award categories for organizations: the Impact Award and the Innovation Award.


Art Award: This award is given to an artist who has made a significant contribution to the Bay Area and whose work has inspired social action and measurable impact. In honor of Helen Crocker Russell.

Leadership Award: This award is given to an individual to recognize outstanding commitment to the community and inspired leadership. In honor of Robert C. Kirkwood.


Impact Award: This award is given to a current or former TSFF grant recipient that demonstrates exemplary commitment to creating greater equity and opportunity in the Bay Area.

Innovation Award: This award is given to an organization undertaking a pioneering effort to address racial and economic equity in the Bay Area. In honor of John R. May.


Individual award winners will receive $10,000. Organization award winners will receive $20,000 for their organization.


This nominee’s work serves populations in one or more of the following Bay Area counties:

Alameda County
Contra Costa County
Marin County
San Francisco County
San Mateo County


Nominations for the 2018 Community Leadership Awards will open in April 2018. Nominees will be notified to submit a full application for review.  


Nominations are vetted by foundation staff, who will review all of the candidates. Finalists are then presented to the awards selection committee, a panel of community leaders from throughout the Bay Area. The committee then recommends finalists to the board of trustees, which confirms the winners.

Application Criteria


Describe the community or individuals with whom you work. Please note that nominees will only be considered if their work impacts communities in one or more of the following five Bay Area counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo.


Please tell us about the nature of your work. Some examples include:

  • Community-Driven: Employs solutions built on a deep local understanding of a Bay Area community and works with communities of color and low-income communities; is representative of and responsive to community perspectives and actively engages community members/clients for their input to inform their methods.
  • Leader: Has a record of demonstrated leadership in their field and community; community members, thought leaders, and peers look to this applicant as a source of inspiration and empowerment.
  • Collaborator: Works with and is informed by other Bay Area or community leaders, organizations, agencies, faith groups and/or sectors to break down silos and build collaborative solutions.


Describe yourself/your organization and how it works to break down racial and/or economic barriers for residents/communities. Tell us about the issue or challenge you seek to address in one or more of the following counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo.