A critical thread in the fabric of the Firm is the Select Equity Group Foundation. The mission of the Foundation is to make a positive impact by actively engaging all employees in identifying and supporting charitable organizations of excellence. Our primary grantmaking program has been 100% democratic and inclusive since the Foundation was established in 2000 when the Firm had only six full-time employees. Today, our annual grantmaking process is more personal and diligent than ever. The breadth of our philanthropic portfolio reflects the diverse interests of our employee base, while the quality of our chosen grantees reflects our rigorous research process, including an application by invitation, site visits and discussions with leadership before an award can be considered. We strive to align our philanthropic endeavors with our equity research efforts which are defined by generating and researching ideas internally, identifying great businesses and knowing them better than anyone.
The Foundation supports a wide variety of charitable programs, including an arts initiative, SEG Voices, and a unique employee matching gift program. To date, more than $17 million in grants have been awarded to local, national and international not-for-profit organizations in the areas of Advocacy and Civil Rights, Arts and Culture, Education and Youth Development, Environmental Causes, Health, Human Services and International Development.