Inspiring the Future

Our History

Established in 1973, IEEE Foundation is governed by the laws of the State of New York, USA. The “official” purpose as stated in the Certification of Incorporation is exclusively to further the scientific and educational purposes of IEEE. The Foundation is directed by a Board of 13 IEEE members with varying technical, geographic, and professional backgrounds and is operated by a staff of 10.

Initially, the IEEE Foundation's role was to accept and administer charitable donations for IEEE Awards. As the generous giving of the IEEE membership increased, the IEEE Foundation expanded its scope to giving grants to worthy projects. In 1989-90, the Trusts of Alfred and Gertrude Goldsmith, valued at approximately US$4 million, were bequeathed to the IEEE Foundation.

To stay true to the original spirit of Andrew Carnegie's gift that ultimately established the United Engineering Center (UEC), the IEEE Board of Directors voted to contribute the US$7.6 million net proceeds from the sale of the UEC to the IEEE Foundation in 1998. Today, the IEEE Foundation grows and expands its ability to support activities of importance to IEEE thanks to the generosity of our donors.


The IEEE History Center collects and preserves the oral histories of leading IEEE Foundation Past Presidents and Board Members. Thus far, three emeritus members have been included. These oral histories focus on the interviewees' experiences with the IEEE Foundation and how the role of the Foundation evolved over the past (almost) fifty years. 


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