The Jefferson Trust

The Jefferson Trust makes grants to innovative ideas that enrich the University of Virginia and the student experience. Founded in 2006, the Trust has awarded over $14.4 million to 346 trustee-selected projects across Grounds. Any student, faculty, or staff member may apply for funding, with grants typically ranging between $1,000 and $300,000. Grants have been made to every school; and many University organizations, centers, or institutes have received grants. To learn more about the organization, our grant-making, and our Trustees, view our 2022-2023 annual report.


To see every great idea at the University of Virginia come to fruition.


To advance the University of Virginia and the student experience by connecting inspiring ideas with a dedicated and engaged group of donors.


  • The Jefferson Trust believes in the power of innovative, novel, and forward-thinking ideas to have a lasting and positive impact on the University of Virginia and on society at large.
  • We appreciate the tremendous capacity of the students, faculty, and staff of the University of Virginia to generate these ideas, and the Trust plays a critical role in providing catalytic support that otherwise may be difficult or impossible to obtain.
  • In fulfilling our mission, we are uniquely positioned to foster a dynamic, diverse community where inspired ideas meet dedicated donors, and we believe that the best outcomes arise from diverse perspectives. We value the wisdom that comes from all backgrounds including race, gender, sexual orientation, identity, ability, age, religion, and experience. These diverse and inclusive perspectives inform and enhance our grantmaking.

There are now over 70 trustees who award $1M or more each year. These trustees are UVA alumni, parents, and friends from across the country; representing almost every school, a variety of professional disciplines, and range in age from 23 to 81. Their unique backgrounds and skillsets combine to form a board that is fun, engaging, collegial, and collaborative. Through their service they engage directly with, and invest in, the people and projects that advance UVA.

2023–24 Trustee Board

  • Daniel S. Adler
  • M. Alexandra Arriaga
  • John A. Ayers
  • Daniel H. Benckart, MD
  • Jane H. & John J. Bradshaw
  • Sarah F. Bridenhagen
  • Sarah R. Bridenhagen
  • George H. Brown
  • Erin F. & James F. Burgoyne
  • Cameron B. & J. Duncan Burn
  • John A. Burns & Faith Lyons Burns
  • Drs. Victoria Davis Chen & Stephen M. Chen
  • Michael S. Christopher
  • Jonathan C. & Theresa T. Clark
  • Alan C. Cline
  • Stefan H. Cushman
  • Anthony J. DiClemente
  • Molly M. Dunnington
  • Douglas E. Eckert
  • John & Jocelyn Ege
  • Harry C. Elkins & Allison B. Elkins
  • Mr. Lee R. Forker, Jr.
  • Carson H. Gibson
  • Frank R. Gough, III
  • Sarah D. & Jonathan C. Graham
  • Maria T. Gutierrez
  • Melissa J. Hutson
  • Christie Graham Jacobs
  • Alan S. Kava
  • William A. Lascara
  • Eric F. Leon
  • Ashley Thompson Manning
  • Steven A. Marks
  • William C. Martin
  • Jon E. Mattson
  • Adrienne S. McCallister
  • Andrew McGuire
  • Scott McLellan
  • Amy & Paul McPheeters
  • Paul M. & Lysa A. Meurer
  • Holly Michaud
  • Carter S. Moore
  • Ashlee A. & John E. Morningstar
  • Jennifer R. Nisi
  • M. Paul Nolde
  • Lars R. & Lynne N. Norell
  • Sharon M. Owlett
  • Sara Perry
  • Emily Philpott & Chris Tetzeli
  • William N. Pike
  • Timothy J. Ranzetta
  • Jill F. Reid
  • Neal R. Rudge
  • William C. Sanders, Jr.
  • Sarah C. Semegen
  • Lindsey Shavers
  • Susan E. & Ramesh Singh
  • B. Hanson Slaughter
  • John W. Sperling, MD
  • Holly M. & Mark T. Stancil
  • John D. & Honour A. Thornton
  • Marie G. & James S. Tybur
  • David B. Wells
  • Lily E. West
  • Adrienne & Keith O. Woodard
  • Sarah J. & Todd G. Zimmerman