The University of California, Berkeley Foundation (UCBF) has been dedicated to supporting UC Berkeley’s core endeavors — teaching, research, and public service — since 1948. The Foundation is governed by a Board of Trustees
composed of volunteer and campus leaders. In addition to fundraising for the University, the Board’s mission
is to serve as an advisory group for the Chancellor and the campus as a whole — to ensure UC Berkeley’s continuing stature as one of the world’s preeminent institutions of higher learning.
The Berkeley Endowment Management Company
(BEMCO) manages the investment of endowment funds given to support Berkeley’s mission of teaching, research, and public service.
A Historical Perspective on Cal’s Public-Private Partnership
The public-private partnership at Cal has existed since the University of California was founded in 1868 and has undergone three distinct phases. The first fifty years was an era of private support. The “Builders of Berkeley” were private individuals who helped to create and sustain the institution. Their names are memorialized on campus: Phoebe Apperson Hearst, Jane Sather, Charles Franklin Doe. They and others Phoebe Hearstprovided money for the original buildings and supplied the university’s entire budget for three of the first ten years. On average, half the budget came from private funds during this time.
The next fifty years (1919 to 1968) were distinguished by support from the state: the state provided 95% of Cal’s budget. (The majority of Cal’s alumni graduated during this period, which has led to the general perception that Cal continues to operate almost entirely on state support.) Nevertheless, a few key alumni sensed that state support might not continue indefinitely at this level. These far-sighted individuals decided that the campus needed an external entity to advance its interests and promote its welfare. In 1948, they formed the California Alumni Foundation. In 1975, this was renamed the UC Berkeley Foundation and took on the responsibility for raising private funds.
A Foundation of Support
The University of California, Berkeley Foundation (UCBF) supports and advances the mission of the University of California, Berkeley by encouraging private philanthropy. The Foundation is the most important volunteer body affiliated with the campus and serves as the University’s primary vehicle for enlisting fundraising volunteers from the private sector. The Foundation ensures that there is a long-term commitment to the campus fundraising program.
Private support is critical to the future of Cal as full state support is unlikely to return. Private gifts are now necessary to provide for core programs, to build new buildings, to create new programs, and to carry the legacy of Cal into the next century.