©2016 I The Albert Pick Jr. Fund I 70 E. Lake St., Suite 1120 I Chicago, IL 60601 I (312) 236-1192

Response to Covid-19

The Albert Pick Jr. Fund is working to respond to the needs of the community in this time of uncertainty and crisis. Please see the following joint letter that the Fund has signed on to: 

March 18, 2020

An Open Letter to the Chicago Region’s Nonprofit Community | COVID-19

Dear Partners and Friends,

As the Chicago region grapples with unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19, we are grateful for your ongoing work to provide essential public services, tackle inequities, and create communities where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.

We can’t imagine a more difficult time for Chicago area nonprofits. Many vital programs are being disrupted at a time when people need them more, daily operations altered, and budgets stretched by increased demand for services and the cancellation of revenue-generating events – all in a context of tremendous and extraordinary uncertainty. The challenges are even greater for those providing direct services to people at the highest risk due to the virus itself and the economic impacts we are already seeing.

Like you, this community is at the heart of everything we care about. In these anxious times, we want to reaffirm our commitment to you and your work. Your priorities may be shifting as you determine how best to provide for communities, and the path to meet your original program goals may no longer be clear. While we know you remain deeply committed to continuing your work, we also realize that during this crisis it may not be realistic to meet the project goals you once expected to achieve. Please know, we understand and will prioritize flexibility regarding reporting.

In recognition of the challenges you are facing now and those that will be posed to our region in the days and weeks ahead, many of us have joined together and with others to contribute to a fund as one way to support those impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

The Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund will provide flexible resources to community-based organizations across the Metropolitan Chicago region to supply essential aid to the individuals and households who are most impacted by the pandemic. Those resources currently include access to emergency food and basic supplies, rent and mortgage assistance and utility assistance. Learn more at https://www.chicagocovid19responsefund.org/.

We will continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 in our community by listening to you to understand your experience and the experiences of those you serve. We are heartened by the way organizations across our region are rising to this challenge and are committed to doing our part to help ensure this critical work continues.

Thank you for your leadership and partnership in helping our city weather this crisis.



Iris Krieg, Executive Director

Albert Pick, Jr. Fund


Joel M. Friedman, President

The Alvin H. Baum Family Fund


Helene D. Gayle, MD, MPH, President and Chief Executive Officer

The Chicago Community Trust


Adam Levine, President

Circle of Service Foundation


Mary Pounder, Program Director

Comer Family Foundation


Greg DiDomenico, President and CEO

Community Memorial Foundation


Leslie Ramyk, Executive Director

Conant Family Foundation


Evan Hochberg, President

Crown Family Philanthropies


Arne Duncan, Managing Partner

Emerson Collective / Chicago CRED


Angelique Power, President

The Field Foundation


Rachel Garbow Monroe, President and CEO

Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation


Maria Socorro Pesqueira, President

Healthy Communities Foundation


Phyllis Glink, Executive Director

The Irving Harris Foundation


Janet Froetscher, President

JB and MK Pritzker Family Foundation


Lonnie Nasatir, President

Jewish United Fund


John Palfrey, President

John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation


Ellen S. Alberding, President

The Joyce Foundation


Liz Kramer Lefkofsky, Executive Director

Lefkofsky Family Foundation


Craig Leva, President

Leva Family Foundation


Unmi Song, President

Lloyd A. Fry Foundation


Kelsey Malnati Howell, Executive Director

Marc and Jeanne Malnati Family Foundation


Allyson Park, President

Mars Wrigley Foundation


Gayla Brockman, President and CEO

Michael Reese Health Trust


Kim R. Van Horn, Managing Director

Paul M. Angell Family Foundation


Gillian Darlow, CEO

Polk Bros. Foundation


Julie Wilen, Executive Director

Pritzker Pucker Family Foundation

Pritzker Foundation


Cindy Moelis, President

Pritzker Traubert Foundation


David Hiller, President and CEO

Robert R. McCormick Foundation


Na'ilah Suad Nasir, President

Spencer Foundation


Sean Garrett, President and CEO

United Way of Metro Chicago


Robert N. DiLeonardi, Executive Director

VNA Foundation


Michelle Morales, President

Woods Fund Chicago

About the Fund

The Albert Pick, Jr. Fund is a private, independent foundation established in 1947.  While grantmaking interests and procedures have been updated over the years to reflect changing times, the Fund’s mission remains faithful to the intent of its founders, Corinne and Albert Pick, Jr.: to provide disadvantaged Chicago residents with the tools they need to improve their lives.  Mr. Pick was a business man who, among his other accomplishments, started Pick Hotels Corp., which eventually controlled 15 hotels. He and Mrs. Pick were avid philanthropists, serving on many boards and assisting many organizations


Today, the Fund concentrates on neighborhoods and/or people who are economically or otherwise disadvantaged or who face discrimination. We believe that people should be empowered to identify and define the problems they confront and work towards solutions. Our role is to ensure they have the  resources and support they need to undertake this work.


In 2019, the Fund’s directors and staff aim to do our part, as a philanthropic institution, to support the growing movement around social justice and racial equity. We are asking ourselves how the Fund can do more to support the objectives of this movement. Therefore, we have begun an exploration process to review our grantmaking, Board and staff attitudes, investments and vendors with the goal of making changes over time that will be more in line with our values.


This will not be an easy process with a direct path. As a field, philanthropy is considering how it can play a role in promoting social justice and racial equity. Best practices and strategies are still being developed. At the Pick Fund, we expect to encounter bumps along the way – we may make some mistakes and need to adjust our approach. Through this website, we will keep you advised of what we are doing and how our grantmaking is affected. We appreciate your patience as we work to build a better Albert Pick Jr. Fund for a better Chicago.


If you have applied before, you will note the application form has been revised to ask more specific questions about applicants’ demographics – who is served and who is in leadership roles. This is a first step to understanding who is benefiting from our grants and whether we are really reaching our target populations.


Please refer to the WHAT WE FUND page for more information on our grantmaking, funding guidelines, and application deadlines.