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Marsha J. Smith Community Leadership Fund Application

The purpose of the Marsha J. Smith Community Leadership Fund is to encourage and enable individuals from the Grand Traverse region to enhance their leadership skills and thereby improve the quality of life in our region today and for generations to come.

Grant Guidelines

Individuals or small groups can apply for up to $1,000 to support a leadership or learning opportunity. Funding must be disbursed directly to a nonprofit, educational, or governmental organization and funds can be used for registration costs, travel, materials, etc.

Marsha J. Smith Community Leadership Fund dollars will be prioritized to:

  • Support applicants that are interested in developing their leadership skills for the benefit of our community. The goal of this fund is to support individuals in their pursuit to develop and enhance their skills as a leader within their professional role, as well as the broader community and region. Requests for support for professional development specific to an applicant's current job or role will not be considered.
  • Support applicants that are interested in answering the question "How can I step more into my role as a leader in the community?"
  • Requests for one time opportunities rather than annual opportunities.
  • Organizations or individuals that plan to contribute partial funding toward the overall cost of the opportunity.

Some examples of opportunities that would be a great fit for this fund include (but are certainly not limited to):

Grant Process

  • Complete the online grant application form (link below).
  • Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis. We will review applications and make funding decisions based on three deadlines during the year: March 1; June 1; and September 1.
  • The Community Foundation advisory committee will review all grant proposals and will make funding recommendations to the Community Foundation Board of Directors. All applicants will be notified as to the outcome of their request.


Note: We implemented a new online grants portal in July 2021 so this will likely be your first time logging in to the new system. Please begin by creating a new account.


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