Supporting rural communities in Montana, Idaho and Appalachian Kentucky.


The Steele-Reese Foundation is a charitable trust committed to supporting rural communities and the nonprofit organizations that serve them in Idaho, Montana, and Appalachian Kentucky.  Since its inception, the Foundation has maintained a focus on the unique challenges of rural living and on helping people build healthy, successful, and sustainable communities.

Eleanor Steele Reese, daughter of Charles Steele – a banker, lawyer, and business associate of J.P. Morgan – created The Steele-Reese Foundation in 1955. The Foundation's name honors Eleanor's family as well as the family of her husband, Emmet Reese. The couple found strength and fulfillment in their work as cattle ranchers in Idaho and they created the Foundation as a lasting commitment to their rural values.

The Foundation supports nonprofit organizations working in the areas of rural education; health; human/social services; the arts and humanities; and land, water, and wildlife conservation and historic preservation.  Applications from organizations operating outside of the Foundation's regional or programming areas are not eligible for funding.


Learn More About Us

Latest Update

Kentucky Applicant Webinar

A webinar for those applying for grants in Appalachian Kentucky, held live Tuesday, January 28, was recorded and is available. Please click here to register and access the recording.

Online Application

The Foundation uses an online application process. We encourage applicants to review the How to Apply pages of this web site and to thoroughly review the Foundation’s funding guidelines and program areas.

We also encourage you to contact the Foundation's Appalachian Director, Judy Owens, or Western Director, Linda Tracy, to discuss your project prior to submitting an application.

All online grant applications must be submitted by March 1 of each year.