Press Release

2023 Grantmaker Salary and Benefits Report Shows Pay and Benefits Up After Record Inflation, but More Turnover

WASHINGTON - The Council on Foundations today announced the release of the 2023 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.

This year’s GSB Report shows that compensation and benefits increased at a time of record inflation. Staff salaries rose an average of 5.49 percent, up from 3 percent in 2022. Of foundations that awarded bonuses, 4.85 percent reported giving them specifically to address inflation.

In a first, this year’s survey measured sabbaticals as a benefit for all staff members, with 9 percent of responding foundations offering them to full-time staff and 6.3 percent to part-time staff. In addition, 45.2 percent of responding foundations offered paternity leave, up from 42 percent in 2022, and 41.4 percent offered adoption leave, up from 38 percent in 2022.

Improved pay and perks did not translate directly to staff retention, however, as turnover rates were higher than in previous years. Fifty-seven percent of responsive foundations reported staff departures, up from 50% in 2021, and the mean turnover rate rose to 13.1 percent, up from 11 percent in 2022. Administrative turnover was particularly high at 37.5 percent, up from 33 percent in 2022.

Staff diversity continued to climb, with people of color accounting for 32.7 percent of full-time staff, up from 31 percent in 2022 and 27 percent in 2020. And 14.9 percent of foundation CEOs were people of color, up from 12 percent in 2021. However, while the proportion of CEOs reported as female stayed relatively steady at 61%, the gender pay gap persisted, with female CEOs making 85.3 percent ($201,382) of the median salary reported for male CEOs ($236,080).

“There’s no question that this year’s results show how philanthropy is responding to both the economic climate and the lingering effects of the pandemic,” said Council on Foundations President and CEO Kathleen Enright. “I’m heartened to see foundations responding with needed pay and benefit bumps. It’s also exciting that, for another year, grantmaking organizations were enriched by broader racial diversity in both staff and CEO roles.”

Free for Council members and available for nonmembers to purchase on the Council’s website, the GSB Report has been an essential resource to help inform grantmaker decision-making on budgets, salaries, and benchmarking personnel policies and practices since 1980.

Organized by grantmaker type, foundation type, asset size, and geographic location, and available data includes:

  • Salary data on 10,733 full-time staff from 957 grantmaking organizations;
  • Increase, bonus, and severance eligibility and activity figures;
  • Staff counts for full and part-time staff by grantmaker type and asset size;
  • Gender, race/ethnicity, age, and disability data;
  • Staff tenure, departure, and turnover rates;
  • CEO-specific compensation, benefits, and discretionary grantmaking practices; and
  • Benefits practices and employer costs.

Respondents included community, corporate, operating, public, and private foundations (including family foundations). For more information and to access the report, visit the Council on Foundations website.


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 become a member by visiting

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Nicole Bronzan

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