About Us

Empowering Young Minds Through Art

This corporation is a nonprofit public benefit corporation not organized for the private gain of any person.

Ruth & Joseph C. Reed Foundation for the Arts

Our Mission is Simple

  • To provide access to arts education and experiences inside or outside of school for high-school age and younger students through funding for educational initiatives and arts experiences.
  • To help ensure that children, particularly at-risk populations, have access to the arts.
  • To expand cultural awareness of the emerging arts.
Ruth and Joseph C. Reed Foundation for the Arts

Ruth Reed, Founder 

Founder's Statement of Intent

Because of an unexpected experience with the arts in my early life, I later realized what a profound impact such an awakening can have in shaping and enriching one's future.

For this reason, the focus of the Reed Foundation is on the fine visual arts— namely, painting, drawing, sculpture, and ceramics. Graphic Art, digital images, and photography, although not always considered to be fine art, maybe of secondary consideration, provided that an organization's primary focus is on the fine visual arts since they are fundamental to the others. It is not my intent for the Foundation to support performance or literary arts, such as dance, music, or theater, except as they may collaborate with and support the fine visual arts.

While education, in general, can open doors to successful and meaningful lives, the arts uniquely stimulate creativity, imagination, self-awareness, and a keen perception of the world around us. For these reasons, the Foundation must focus primarily on fine arts education and experiences. It will also consider programs and opportunities for art experiences and art appreciation, such as travel or art study abroad, opportunities to exhibit artwork, and field trips to view and experience the visual arts and/or meet with working artists.

It is my intent for the Foundation to make a difference in young people's lives. It, therefore, favors pre-teens and teenagers, as research has shown that positive gateway experiences for youth are not only most likely to result in lifetime engagement with the arts but, even more importantly, have been shown to boost academic performance and help keep at-risk students in school. Although the Foundation gives preference to programs for middle and high school students, programs for younger students may be considered. As it is often under-served students who are most deprived of arts education and hands-on experiences, the focus of the Foundation must be on those students.

In terms of geographic area, the Foundation will focus its efforts primarily on Southern California, with preference given to geographic areas that are especially lacking in arts education and art appreciation opportunities for young people.

There is a variety of ways for the Foundation to support arts education: for example, donations to schools for art education programs where funds are not available for art instruction and materials; providing scholarships to individual students for art study abroad; or providing funds to other arts organizations, such as museums, community art centers, or other organizations that focus on bringing arts education and experiences to young people, and that also may help build community support for the arts and arts education.

It is not my intention for the Foundation to fund general or administrative costs nor capital improvements for any organization, nor capital improvement support, seed money for start-up organizations, or any other funds that do not directly support programming in visual arts education for youth audiences— funding must focus on programs with direct and measurable impact on youth.

The Foundation may consider partial funding of visual arts programs that have a clearly defined arts education component, such as funding student field trips or gallery drawing experiences at professional art exhibitions or museums. Although it is not my intent to give to individual artists to support/further their own art-making careers, the Foundation could consider funding such programs as artists-in-residence, which would place teaching artists in classrooms/schools or in afterschool programs for students who may not otherwise have arts education opportunities.

Through our work, I know that our Foundation will have a positive and lifelong impact on the students we support.

-Ruth Reed