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Salem Parks Foundation
PO Box 5764
Salem OR 97304
(503) 370-8789

Board of Directors:

  • Elizabeth Belshaw
  • Alan Alexander
  • Linda Bierly
  • Dan Saucy
  • Thomas Smith
  • Carol Snyder
  • Gary T. Pederson
  • Pat Norman


The Salem Parks Foundation began with a small group of park advocates concerned about the long term future of Salemís parks.  These volunteers saw the diminishing of public funding to the point of possible closure of Salemís public parks.  The volunteers sought to raise public awareness of the importance of parks to civic life, to raise public awareness of the peril to Salemís city parks and to begin to provide a stable source of revenue to enhance Salemís parks.

The Salem Parks Foundation filed August 4, 2000 with the State of Oregon Corporation Division  as a public benefit corporation.  We applied for tax exempt status 501(c) 3 as a publicly supported non-profit corporation.  We received our final determination and classification as a public charity from the IRS on December 14, 2004. The IRS granted 501(c) 3 status and has determined our Public Charity Status as 170(b) (1) (A) (vi).

On September 28, 2000, the Salem Parks Foundation Board of Directors adopted bylaws that established the Foundationís primary purpose: to promote, develop, facilitate and sustain stewardship dedicated to the enhancement of the parks, park facilities and park programs of the city of Salem, Oregon.

To fulfill that stated purpose, the SPF has solicited public donations and applied for grant monies to support the following programs:


The SPF Board provides information for the annual City of Salem budget process and advocates for adequate funding of city parks.  The SPF campaigns for municipal park bonds  to provide funds for enlarging both the Salem Park system and the operations and maintenance budget.   The Salem Parks Foundation relies upon volunteers and provides only written and verbal testimony. We do not raise or expend funds to lobby elected officials.






Neighborhood awareness and involvement:

In 2003, the SPF Board created a grant program offered annually so neighborhoods may apply to the Foundation for funds to improve neighborhood parks. The SPF Board visits each neighborhood association to provide information about neighborhood parks and park needs and to provide information about the process of applying for a neighborhood park grant.


Partnerships: the SPF Board provides information and assistance with capital campaigns for local groups seeking to provide enhancements for their local park. 

Education: the SPF has created a free lecture series open to the public to provide information about the history and features of Salem parks.  The SPF Board prints a map of Minto Brown Island Park, Salemís largest park available for all users of the park.

Endowment: The SPF has created a dedicated fund and is working to grow this fund so that it may be invested and provide a stable source of revenue for Salem parks.  All bequests and memorial contributions to the SPF go to this fund.

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