The Transformation of the Henry J. Kaiser Foundation

Center for Strategic Philanthropy and Civil Society (Duke)



Case Study Sector


In 1989, trustees of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation perceived a niche that was going unfilled in American health care. Despite the abundance of private and public interests opposing one another on a host of issues, there was no independent, nonpartisan voice representing the interests of the public as a whole. Kaiser’s leadership came to believe that, by providing high-quality nonpartisan research and analysis and by using effective communications strategies to disseminate information, the Foundation would be able to upgrade the quality of the many debates constantly unfolding across the health care system, and ultimately improve the system itself.
Thus Drew E. Altman, the newly hired president of Kaiser, was charged with the task of creating a new institution, with the mission of fixing the politics of health care through policy research and analysis and communication.



  • Field Building
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  • Northern America

Blog Posts

Start Spreadin’ the News

October 3, 2018

The Charles H. Revson Foundation and six philanthropic partners this week launched a new local news outlet in America’s largest city.


Jan 22

Join Professor Joel Fleishman and the Chief executive Officer of Energy Foundation, Jason Mark - for the Foundation Impact Research Group seminar.