The J.M. Kaplan Fund, a New York-based family foundation, was established in 1945 by businessman and philanthropist Jacob Merrill Kaplan (1891-1987). The Fund was capitalized by profits from Mr. Kaplan’s business operations, most notably the sale of the Welch Grape Company to the National Grape Co-operative Association in Westfield, New York. The newly established Fund won recognition for major commitments to the New School (where Mr. Kaplan served as board chairman for twenty years), Carnegie Hall (which he helped save), and the movement for union democracy. The Fund also became known for small grants given quickly for emergencies or as seed money to attract other funding. Today the Fund focuses on three program areas: The Environment; Heritage Conservation; and Social Justice. The J.M.K. Innovation Prize, an exciting initiative first launched in 2015, supports ten early seed ideas – at $175,000 each – that aim to address our country’s most pressing needs through social and environmental innovation.