About the Foundation

What is the Foundation?
The Frankfort-Elberta Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Inc, a 501c3 charitable foundation, was founded by the Frankfort-Elberta Area Chamber of Commerce in 1999 as an innovative way for concerned citizens to put charitable dollars to work for the general benefit of the Frankfort-Elberta area. Members of the Chamber of Commerce are automatically a member of the Foundation. The Foundation is entirely funded by private donations and grants Grant Application.

Our Mission
“This organization was created in order to provide a long-term vehicle for the collection of funds and the distribution of grants for charitable purposes and projects in and about the Frankfort and Elberta areas in Northwestern Michigan and generally surrounding Betsie Bay, including but not limited to public education and training, public events, community history, and community facilities.”

Representation of Directors
The composition of the board of directors is a unique effort to include representatives from many areas of the wider community. In addition to representation from the active membership of the Frankfort-Elberta Area Chamber of Commerce, the foundation specifically seeks board representation from institutions like Paul Oliver Memorial Hospital, the Maples, churches, the Frankfort-Elberta Area Schools, Service Clubs, the City of Frankfort and the Village of Elberta councils, and members of the community at-large. The board of directors of this foundation is designed to be inclusive of as many areas of interest in the community as possible.

Reasons for Support
In contrast to other giving programs, private family foundations, the Community Chest, and other local charitable enterprises, the Chamber of Commerce Foundation stands out for the following reasons:

  • A grant maker focused on the broad needs of the community
  • A public charity with public accountability
  • A permanent and flexible source of support for worthwhile local causes
  • A tool for the present and the future


What Does the Foundation Fund?
The Frankfort-Elberta Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Inc. was founded with a broad mandate – to respond to the most pressing needs of the community and to enhance the community’s quality of life. The foundation views these charitable needs as broadly as possible.

The general categories include the following:

  • Education and promotion of the community
  • Historical preservation
  • Economic development of the community
  • Civic Affairs
  • Youth activities

Examples of recent community projects receiving assistance from the Foundation include:

  • The Caleb Memorial Fund – a project that has resulted in the construction and installation of pier safety devices in the Frankfort Harbor as well as safety education and swimming instruction for kids in the schools and on our beaches. The Caleb Fund also contributed $3000 to the Benzie Sheriff’s Department Dive Team.

Other projects receiving Foundation help also include:

  • A grant to the local Pt. Betsie Lighthouse Committee supporting the planning stages of an effort to keep the world famous lighthouse under local control.
  • Major support of Frankfort’s recent Sesquicentennial Celebration.
  • Funding of the planning stages and contributions to the construction of the Frankfort to Elberta Beach-to-Beach Trail.
  • Publication of “Port City Perspectives” – a history Frankfort’s first 150 years.
  • Support for 4th of July celebrations including the annual Fireworks in Frankfort Harbor.


To Apply for a Grant
Although the funding available for Foundation giving is limited, we are making grants to worthwhile causes. Those interested in applying for a grant for community projects should contact Jim Martin, P.O. Box 566, Frankfort, Michigan, 49635, phone number: (231) 352-7251. The grant form is simple and the requirements for information about your project are user friendly – meant to encourage community efforts.

To Make a Contribution
Contributing to the Frankfort-Elberta Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation is as simple as filling out our FOUNDATION Contribution Form, writing a check, and mailing it to the address provided. The foundation has achieved the legal status of a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation for tax purposes. Contributions are fully tax deductible. In keeping with the broad mandate of the foundation, suggestions for giving to specific causes presently identified are provided on the FOUNDATION Contribution Form. Your money will be earmarked and used for the cause, event, or project that you designate.

If you wish more information about the Foundation, please feel free to contact the Frankfort-Elberta Area Chamber of Commerce. Your inquiries will be answered in a timely way by Foundation members.

Corporate Premiere Sponsors

curtis insurance corp

State Savings Bank

Benzie County Visitors Bureau

Dinghy's Restaurant & Bar

harborlights corp

Graceland Fruit color circle logo sm

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