Our Work and History

Founded by philanthropists Jody Allen and the late Paul G. Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, the foundation initially invested in community needs across the Pacific Northwest with a focus on regional arts, under-served populations, and the environment.

‚ÄčToday, the foundation supports a global portfolio of frontline partners working to preserve ocean health, protect wildlife, combat climate change, and strengthen communities. The foundation invests in grantees to leverage technology, fill data and science gaps, and drive positive public policy to advance knowledge and enable lasting change.

Our Founders

Jody Allen

Jody is co-founder, board chair, and president of the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. She is chair of Vulcan Inc., which she co-founded with brother Paul G. Allen in 1986, founding director of MoPOP, and chair of the board of the Allen Institute. As trustee of the Paul G. Allen Trust, Jody works to ensure Paul’s vision is realized for generations to come. She also serves as chair of the Seattle Seahawks NFL and Portland Trail Blazers NBA franchises, recognizing the role of both teams as catalysts for civic pride. 

Jody is a philanthropist passionate about conservation, fighting wildlife trafficking, and saving Africa’s elephants from extinction. In 2016 she founded Wild Lives Foundation, and she serves on the board of Sealife Response, Rehab and Research (SR3), an organization dedicated to improving the health and welfare of marine wildlife in the Pacific Northwest. 

Deeply committed to education and the arts, Jody is a board member of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town, and previously served on the boards of ArtsFund, the University of Washington Foundation, the Museum of Glass, the Los Angeles International Film Festival, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. 

Paul G. Allen

Entrepreneur and philanthropist Paul G. Allen worked to save endangered species, slow climate change, improve ocean health, share art, history and film, develop new technology, tackle epidemics, research how the human brain works and build sustainable communities. In all his endeavors, he constantly asked “What if…?” and pushed people to challenge conventional thinking, collaborate across disciplines and reimagine what’s possible. Learn more at PaulAllen.com

Board Members

Marilyn Valentine
Marilyn Valentine serves as Executive Director of the Office of the Chair at Vulcan Inc., supporting Jody Allen’s vision and strategy as trustee and executor of the Paul G. Allen Estate. Marilyn brings more than 17 years of experience at Vulcan to her role, having worked closely with Jody Allen and Paul Allen across their global business and philanthropy interests. In addition to her board service for the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Marilyn serves on the board of governors for the Swedish Medical Center Foundation, supporting the largest non-profit healthcare system in the Puget Sound region.
Thomas L. Daniel, Ph.D.
Tom is a Professor in the Department of Biology at the University of Washington with adjunct appointments in Bioengineering, Computer Science & Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering. His research and teaching melds neuroscience, computing, and biomechanics to understand the control and dynamics of movement in biology. He was MacArthur Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow and is a Fellow of the American Association for Advancement of Science.  He is on the Board of Directors for the Allen Institute, the Biological Sciences Advisory Committee for the National Science Foundation, and is the U.S. representative for the Council of Scientists for the Human Frontiers of Science Program. Tom is also a member of the Washington Academy of Sciences.

Grantee Code of Conduct

The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation has high ethical standards governing our work, standards we also apply to our grantees, funding partners, vendors and contractors through our Grantee Code of Conduct. Our business practices and standards reflect our commitment to make and leave the world a better place.

Because our funding vision and priorities are carefully curated, at this time we do not accept unsolicited proposals. Existing grantees may contact their program officer if they have questions. 

The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation does not provide funding for indirect costs. In addition, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation does not typically provide funding for the following:

  • Loans or debt retirement
  • Annual appeals, federated campaigns, general fund drives, special events, or sponsorships
  • Projects of organizations whose policies or practices discriminate on the basis of ethnic origin, gender identity or expression, race, religion, or sexual orientation
  • Sectarian or religious organizations whose principal activity is for the benefit of their own members or adherents
The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation does not accept donations.


The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation is aware of fraudulent correspondence informing recipients that they have been randomly selected and awarded money, and asking them to confirm an email address or other personal information. If you receive such a message purportedly from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, please report the message as fraudulent to your network provider or social media platform. The foundation does not conduct any grantee outreach or correspondence via unsolicited emails or social messaging, will never request administrative fees, host lotteries of any kind, request donations or offer investment opportunities, nor request any private information such as banking details.
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