Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation

Introducing the CommunityFoundation IdeaCenter…
Empowering community foundations by learning and sharing from each other.

Group of Children

Did you Miss our State of the Lakes webinars for Crosslake and Brainerd Lakes Area? Never fear, you can still check them out on our YouTube channel today!

Hear updates from local organizations such as Essentia Health, Brainerd Public Schools, the National Loon Center, Lakes Area Music Festival, the Central Lakes College and the Brainerd Chamber.

Check out the BLACF's latest grants and activities - BRAINERD DISPATCH WRAP MAY 2020

Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation (BLACF) has been working for 20 years to provide innovative ways for area residents and businesses to give back to their community. As an affiliate partner of CommunityGiving, we are able to provide a wide variety of services to our donors, their professional advisors, and area non-profit organizations as we all work together to create a lasting impact on our community.

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”
– Sir Winston Churchill

The Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation is able to work with you to create your own fund to support the Brainerd Lakes area, guide you to an appropriate grant to apply for and much more.


Engaging People. Connecting Resources. Building Community.


Community | Integrity | Commitment | Innovation | Optimism

BLACF Legacy Stories

For inspiration for your own fund, look to some of our BLACF donors’ Legacy Stories. Here are a few samples.

Catherine Gustafson

Gustafson Family Foundation Fund

Catherine Gustafson and her husband, Joe, lived their entire married life in the Brainerd area where they raised three daughters – Greta, Joni and Lisa while Joe worked in real estate development.

Catherine died in April 2008 at the age of 94. She had set up a donor advised fund with Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation to be funded at her death and advised by her three daughters. The fund is focused on children and health issues.

Hope Lindman


Hope Lindman has been blessed by family, by friends and by success in business and it is her calling to share those blessings with others. She chooses specifically to use the Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation to help support the Lakes Area Police Chaplaincy in their work. The Chaplaincy serves when an officer must inform a family of a death or at the scene of an accident, where emotions run high.
mother and child

BLACF by the Numbers

*Last updated June 30, 2019

Founded: 1998
Total Assets: $12.7 million
Total FUNDS: 102
Total GRANTS to Date: $5.6 million



Karl Samp
BLACF Executive Director

Phone: 218-824-5633

Additional Staff & Board of Directors