The Franklin Legacy Fund, founded by Susan Franklin, is a charitable foundation whose mission is to provide promising non-profits with seed funding and other support – information, expertise, systems, structure and/or staffing – to help them build stability into their operations and ensure their success in the future. We collaborate with teams of soon-to-graduate students from the California State University, Monterey Bay, College of Business to provide a business plan for each of our major beneficiaries that is used in decision-making about where and how our funds are to be utilized. We do not just give money, we are actively engaged with our grantees to provide a context in which they can rethink and redesign themselves so that they are able to flourish after our support is complete in three years. Additionally, we offer classes, workshops and mentoring programs to the non-profits in our community that support our overarching goal of helping them thrive.
Philanthropy has been a central pillar in our family for generations. My father, Henry Baron, inspired this fund by his own life. My father based his philanthropy upon the belief that there is always someone in greater need and that it is a privilege to give, which he learned from his father, Louis Baron, who even at the height of the Depression shared what he could.
As my father’s business prospered, he extended his philanthropic reach to support the arts and culture and, most important to him, endowing a school for autistic children, renamed the Baron School in his honor. My husband Charly’s grandfather established our family’s first foundation, the Charles M. Weinberg Fund. His parents, Charlotte and Maynard Franklin, were responsible for the fund and passed it on to Charles Weinberg’s grandchildren, Jeanne Meyers and Skip Wayne, who renamed it the Franklin Weinberg Fund, which today supports philanthropic projects of interest to family members. The Franklin Legacy Fund is dedicated to continuing these traditions.
It is the culmination of my life’s work in the non-profit sector, where I have had the privilege of being involved in causes in which I believed deeply and where I learned the importance of best practices. Seeing the positive impact on people’s lives inspired a vision of what we might accomplish with the Franklin Legacy Fund. My intention is that through our work, we will help create a more compassionate community built on strong, sustainable non-profits by sharing our resources, knowledge and experience. I hope to inspire future generations to dream of a better world and give meaning to material wealth by making it happen.