The Upstate Foundation

The Upstate Foundation was founded in 1976 as a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation to receive and administer gifts and bequests for charitable purposes with a focus on patient care, education, scientific research, and community health and well-being. A public charity with the ability to make distributions to any qualified nonprofit organization, the Upstate Foundation’s primary orientation is supporting the mission of Upstate Medical University.

The Foundation’s staff works with an engaged board of directors to manage over 1,100 funds; conduct multi-year, multi-million dollar capital and endowment campaigns; administer alumni associations for the colleges of Nursing and Health Professions; implement named giving and planned giving programs, and a grateful patient and family program; run annual campaigns for Upstate University Hospital, Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital and the Upstate Cancer Center; and sponsor several signature fundraising events annually. In addition, the Foundation is home to the local chapter of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

The Foundation is largely self-supporting with the assets it manages totaling nearly $225 million.

Click here to view Impact Map.

Thank you to our donors

We have always known that the Upstate Foundation supports a wide array of programs and initiatives across the Upstate enterprise. As we assembled our 2022 Donor Appreciation report, the breadth of the Foundation’s impact seemed especially striking.

Through the generosity of our donors, funding was provided toward patient care, provider well-being, groundbreaking biomedical research, student scholarships and emergency needs, and to improve health care for some of the most vulnerable among us – refugees, the homeless and immigrants.

Overall, nearly $13.4 million was raised to support these initiatives while over $8.3 million was awarded to projects and services across our fourfold mission. Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital continued to be an important area, especially as services expanded to include the Golisano Center for Special Needs serving children with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Behind the scenes, work on the silent phase of a campaign to help address child and adolescent mental health raised nearly $1.4 million toward the goal of $3 million. As we endeavor to do our part to help alleviate this national crisis, we are proud to collaborate with Elmcrest Children’s Center on community solutions for the urgent local need.

A new endowed professorship was the culmination of a nearly 25-year collaboration between the Foundation and Upstate’s department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences. An endowed lectureship was created to honor a longtime trauma surgeon upon his untimely passing. And scholarships remained a key component of educational funding.

Among the many research initiatives supported by the Foundation were pilot grants to foster cancer research on novel ideas and generate preliminary data for grant funding from external sources, such as federal granting agencies.

Our thanks to you and the scores of donors who helped make all of this possible!

Candid/GuideStar’s top distinction

The Upstate Foundation has achieved Platinum distinction from Candid/GuideStar, the leading source of information on the programs, finances and impact of more than 1.8 million IRS-recognized nonprofit organizations.

Platinum is the highest level of recognition in Candid’s nonprofit profiles. Donors, funders, researchers, educators, professional service providers, governing agencies and the media use the Candid site, seen by seven million visitors annually.

According to Candid, the Platinum distinction encourages nonprofit organizations to share their progress and results in important new ways—moving way beyond simplistic financial ratios—to reflect the changes organizations are making in the world.

The Upstate Foundation had previously received Candid’s Bronze, Silver and Gold level distinctions, which offer increasingly detailed organizational information ranging from basic contact information to qualitative information. Now, Candid Platinum allows nonprofits to report their progress against their missions in quantitative terms. As an early adopter of Platinum recognition, the Upstate Foundation is demonstrating its commitment to measuring progress and results, and sharing that information with potential funders.

“Our donors expect us to use their contributed dollars wisely and appropriately to alleviate illness, search for knowledge and educate tomorrow’s health care practitioners,” said Eileen Pezzi, vice president for development at Upstate. “Candid's Platinum is one more way for the Upstate Foundation to provide transparency so our donors can see the impact of their gifts.”