Learn what’s happening at the Foundation and in the communities where we work. Hear from staff and partners about their accomplishments and lessons learned along the way.

Introducing the TowerDATA Dashboard!


Author: Tracy Sawicki

Back in 2014, the Foundation’s Trustees and staff went through a strategic planning process. Nothing new, right? What made this strategic plan (which we later decided to call a strategic direction) different is that we built the entire thing around a process called Results-Based Accountability (RBA). Without getting too wonky, RBA takes a page out … Continued

Partnering with Humility: Lessons from the School Ground in Eastern Massachusetts


Author: Tracy Sawicki

Authored by: Tracy Sawicki, Executive Director at the Peter & Elizabeth Tower Foundation and Jane Feinberg, Founder and Principal, Full Frame Communications In 2013, a group of philanthropists gathered together in Beverly, MA for an education roundtable. One of the guest speakers was Jeff Riley, currently the Education Commissioner for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, who … Continued

Meet our Spring 2019 Grant Partners


Author: Don Matteson

The Peter & Elizabeth Tower Foundation is pleased to announce its recent grant awards totaling nearly $1.3 million to 15 organizations for projects benefitting Erie and Niagara Counties in Western New York, as well as Cape Cod, Nantucket, and Essex County in Eastern Massachusetts. “It’s a great privilege to support these organizations as they work … Continued

Real Talk


Author: Megan MacDavey

  What applicants thought about applying to the Tower Foundation in 2018 I can’t say it enough: we love feedback. Don’t get me wrong – some of it is not easy to hear. But we truly appreciate feedback from applicants and grant partners in all its challenging, validating, and sometimes surprising forms. It helps us … Continued

Adventures in Grantmaking: Arc Tank 2.0


Author: Nicholas Randell

On a chilly November afternoon, I had the pleasure of attending Arc Tank 2.0 at the JFK Presidential Library and Museum on UMASS’s Boston campus.  This is the second year of the event, hosted by Northeast Arc (NeArc)¹, and loosely based on the tv show Shark Tank.    Organizations that serve people with intellectual disabilities or … Continued

Meet our New Grant Partners


Author: Megan MacDavey

The Peter & Elizabeth Tower Foundation is pleased to announce that it recently awarded nearly $1.4 million in grants to 14 organizations in Erie and Niagara Counties in Western New York, as well as Cape Cod, Nantucket, and Essex County in Eastern Massachusetts. “We are delighted to support this recent group of grant partners. This … Continued

Small Capacity Grants –> Large Impact


Author: Chuck Colston

In the most recent blog, Megan MacDavey explained how the Small Grants Program will now fit into the Foundation’s “Strengthening Partner Capacity” portfolio. This was done in a continuing effort to streamline our grantmaking. Please refer to Megan’s blog for more information on this change. Today, I really want to focus on the impact that we … Continued

Virtual Office Hours


Author: Megan MacDavey

We love getting to know the communities we work in, learning about the organizations located there, and talking to the people who see what’s happening there every day. Holding office hours at local coffee shops in your neighborhood is one of our favorite ways of connecting. Unfortunately, it’s not always feasible to carve out that … Continued

Announcing New Strengthening Partner Capacity Guidelines


Author: Megan MacDavey

Our newly-launched “Strengthening Partner Capacity” grant guidelines for 2019 mark the beginning of a more streamlined approach to capacity building funding at the Tower Foundation. The Foundation’s Trustees and staff are committed to supporting the organizations, and their leaders, responsible for advancing our goals across the four fields we fund (intellectual disabilities, learning disabilities, mental … Continued