Questions & Inquiries

All administrative and operational questions to:

Lisa Reed Senior Information & Grants Manager Richard King Mellon Foundation BNY Mellon Center
500 Grant Street – Suite 4106
Pittsburgh, PA 15219–2502
Phone: (412) 392-2800 Fax: (412) 392-2837

All media inquiries should be directed to:

Tim Reeves Senior Communications Officer Richard King Mellon Foundation BNY Mellon Center
500 Grant Street – Suite 4106
Pittsburgh, PA 15219–2502
Phone: (412) 392-2834
Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ: Contact

Any questions about the application may be submitted via email to [email protected]. We will be responsive to all thoughtful inquiries. 

Your organization must have a valid U.S. IRS Tax ID. We do not consider applications on behalf of individuals or from outside the United States.

Please review our 2021-2030 strategy and our Funding Programs to understand our priorities and how your application might align with them. You can also visit our Grants page to view previously awarded grants. We also encourage you to read our Annual Report to learn more about our strategy and funding programs.

  • The Foundation does not fund lobbying, advocacy, or political causes or events.
  • We comply with all laws and regulations, including prohibitions on funding terrorist activities.

Please refer to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service:

Each program focuses its funding on different regions.

  • Conservation funds nationally.
  • Economic Mobility and Health & Well-Being exclusively fund efforts that serve Allegheny and Westmoreland counties.
  • Economic Development and Social-Impact Investments mostly fund efforts that serve Allegheny and Westmoreland counties. These programs will occasionally, on a case-by-case basis, consider funding projects based in other western Pennsylvania counties.

We welcome proposals that span funding programs. In the application, you will encounter a question titled “Funding Program.” Select the Foundation program that addresses the majority of your proposed outcomes.

We encourage you to prioritize carefully with your organization, and we recommend that an organization submit one proposal to each RFP. However, the logic model describing the proposed initiative may contain several types of activities that are critical for the project’s success.  

If you are submitting a proposal as part of a large regional research, university, or healthcare institution, we will consider ideas from multiple divisions within the institution. You should coordinate with your institution’s development office before responding to an RFP or completing the General Application to the Foundation.

Only nonprofit or public sector organizations that have received general operations or project support funding within the past three years are eligible for Organizational Effectiveness grants.  

It is unlikely that you can meet with a program officer before submitting. In general, program officers are not available for a discussion until after a proposal has been submitted. You can also email [email protected] with questions.

Foundation staff will reach out to you after reviewing your proposal if they have questions. If you have questions, please email [email protected].

The first step is to check your organization’s tax status and verify that you are eligible to receive philanthropic funding. After that, you can submit an application through our online portal. We will only consider applications submitted through this portal.

Please visit our Application Primer, where you can learn about the nuances of our nonprofit and public sector funding application. We also encourage you to log in to our portal and explore.

The General Application accepts proposals on a rolling basis. Requests for Proposals (RFPs) have specific timelines for submission that are indicated in the detailed guidance on our website.

No, the Foundation is generally not providing multi-year grants at this time. Currently, the majority of our grants are twelve months to eighteen months.

Nonprofit and public sector applicants can submit different proposals to any of the RFPs at the same time.  

For-profit companies and entrepreneurs are only able to submit a proposal to the Employment in the New Economy: Supporting Disconnected and Gig Economy Workers RFP

Grants are the primary form of financial support utilized by the Foundation, but it encourages innovative approaches to conservation such as program-related investments. Given the scale of the nation’s conservation challenges, partnerships with public agencies and for-profit companies are looked upon favorably.

Yes. The Foundation bases its decisions whenever possible on data-driven, scientifically backed evidence, and therefore supports and recognizes the importance of research. Planning efforts also are supported with the expectation that they will lead to programs that advance the Foundation’s Conservation strategy.