Press Release

2021 Grantmaker Salary and Benefits Report Shows Increased Diversity in Leadership Roles

The Council on Foundations (“the Council”) today announced the release of the 2021 Grantmaker Salary and Benefits Report (GSB), an annual analysis of key human resources trends that includes the most comprehensive data on the composition and compensation of U.S. foundations. Published for the first time in 1980, the GSB is an essential resource to help inform grantmaker decision-making around budgets, salaries, and benchmarking personnel policies and practices.

This year’s GSB Report shows that the philanthropic sector is heeding the call to diversify foundation staff, with grantmakers hiring more people of color as program officers and chief executives. Further, in response to the ongoing pandemic, more foundations are providing additional voluntary benefits, such as flexible spending accounts or tuition assistance.

“This year’s Grantmaker Salary and Benefits Report offers a hopeful sign that philanthropy is expanding the leadership table and finding new ways to support employees amidst ongoing crises,” said Council on Foundations President and CEO, Kathleen Enright. “We hope to see this positive momentum continue so that in next year’s GSB we can share evidence of additional progress to build and support a diverse philanthropic workforce.”

Drawing from demographic data for 9,424 full-time staff and salary data for 9,787 full-time staff, the 2021 GSB represents 952 institutional survey respondents. Community foundations, corporate foundations, operating foundations, public foundations, and private foundations (including family foundations) contributed to these data sets. The report includes detailed salary information for 36 full-time professional and administrative roles in philanthropy, classified by both geographic region and type of foundation.

“For more than 40 years, the Council has delivered relevant, point-in-time data to inform funders’ decision-making and identify the key trends shaping the sector,” said Kristen Scott Kennedy, Chief of Staff at the Council on Foundations. “The annual GSB findings provide a blueprint for foundation staff and boards to build and improve upon their approach to compensation and composition.”

For more information and to access the report and its key findings, visit the Council on Foundations website at


About the Council on Foundations

The Council on Foundations exists to help philanthropy be a trusted partner in advancing the greater good. Building on our 70-year history, we are charting a course where funders earn and maintain the public's trust by advancing equity, operating with high integrity, collaborating on broadscale challenges and serving as ethical stewards. Learn more about the Council and becoming a member by visiting

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