About the Foundation | Harold Alfond Foundation

About the Foundation

About the Harold Alfond Foundation

The grantmaking approach and philosophy of the Foundation continues to favor high-quality leadership, entrepreneurial and creative solutions, teamwork, and “skin in the game” on the part of our grantees. 

Founded in 1950, the Harold Alfond Foundation furthers the philanthropic legacy of Harold Alfond, the founder of Dexter Shoe Company, by investing in education, health care, and youth and community development causes that hold the promise of making enduring, transformative contributions to the community and state of Maine.

Harold Alfond awarded matching challenge grants to organizations to build community partnerships and to inspire and leverage additional giving by others. Mr. Alfond ensured that his philanthropy would live on by committing nearly all of his wealth to the Foundation upon his passing in 2007.

Today, the Foundation applies Harold Alfond’s business approach to funding decisions, his belief in teamwork, and his love of competition by awarding matching challenge grants for projects that meet a demonstrable need, are entrepreneurial, promote teamwork, have measurable performance outcomes, are financially viable, and have quality management and board leadership. 

Since 2007, the Foundation has awarded over $1.2 billion in grants, primarily in Maine.

Statement of Values

These values guide our work and our investments in Maine; they represent and honor the philanthropic legacy of Harold Alfond.

We value and invest in:

  • Young People: they are the future of Maine and we collectively owe them healthy communities, high-quality educational opportunities, and the chance to learn and grow through teamwork and athletics
  • Leaders and Entrepreneurs: the health and well-being of our communities rely on addressing pressing needs with strong leadership, creative and entrepreneurial solutions, and teamwork
  • Opportunities: we look to find new and bold opportunities, where our investments can make a difference, support the “underdog,” and promote healthy competition and “skin in the game”
  • High-Quality Education and Health Care: an educated and healthy citizenry is vital for the future success of Maine, well-being of our communities, and strength of our economy. Those who live, work, play, and grow in our state deserve the best educational institutions and health care services

Harold Alfond

Harold Alfond gave freely of his wealth, time, and talents. He wanted to make sure that everyone had a chance for success.

Board of Trustees

Our Board decides which worthwhile charitable organizations will receive support.

Foundation Staff

Our staff manages the day-to-day activities of the Foundation.


We are a private foundation organized as a trust, created under the laws of the State of Maine.