In addition to our primary areas of giving, our foundation administers grantmaking aligned with the interests of our founder, Arthur M. Blank. We oversee a large portfolio of grants including support of essential Atlanta and Montana nonprofit institutions and enduring founder-led initiatives, such as veterans and the military and stuttering, among others.
Our $50 million capital grant will allow Shepherd Center, a neurorehabilitation hospital, to double its family housing capacity. This benefit will enable more families and caregivers to be close by as their loved ones participate in rehabilitation for spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, and other neurological conditions – a critical care difference that positively impacts patient outcomes and lives after discharge.
The grant will support the construction of a new family housing building to be named in Arthur Blank’s honor, located at 1860 Peachtree Road in Atlanta. The expansion will add approximately 160 housing units.
A $10 million grant to Spelman College supports an on-campus creative hub for young entrepreneurs. The funding will establish the Arthur M. Blank Innovation Lab. Formerly known as the Spelman Innovation Lab, the space is a campus-wide resource for entrepreneurial ideation, unconventional research, experimental pedagogy and exploratory play.
The Arthur M. Blank Innovation Lab will be located in Spelman’s new Center for Innovation & the Arts, a state-of-the-art learning environment slated to open in 2024.
The Arthur M. Blank Center for Stuttering Education and Research
The Arthur M. Blank Center for Stuttering Education and Research (the Blank Center) was established in 2020 at The University of Texas at Austin (UT) Moody College of Communication. The Blank Center, founded and led by Dr. Courtney Byrd, who has been building a stuttering program at UT since 2003, advances understanding about the nature and effective treatment of stuttering, globally scales evidence-based programming to treat children, teenagers and adults at no cost, and creates a pipeline of expert clinicians and researchers to make quality, effective treatment accessible to all people.
The Blank Center opened its first satellite location in Atlanta in 2021. During the next decade, additional satellite centers will be established nationally, and Byrd’s signature intensive treatment program, Camp Dream. Speak. Live., will be launched in several new countries. The Blank Centers will also provide education for students and clinicians so that they are equipped to serve people who stutter.
Stuttering has genetically been part of Blank’s family for several generations. He, too, is a person who stutters who previously attempted treatment to improve fluency.