League of Catholic Women Foundation

In the spirit of empowering women in innovative and entrepreneurial ways since 1911, the League of Catholic Women established the League of Catholic Women Foundation (LCWF). With this fund, the League formally transitions from a membership organization to a perpetual grantmaker. The LCWF offers financial assistance to organizations in the 12-county greater Twin Cities metro area serving women to help them fulfill their potential and build a hopeful future for themselves and generations to come.

The League of Catholic Women have entrusted the LCWF to the experienced and faith-consistent stewardship of the Catholic Community Foundation of Minnesota (CCF). CCF will work in conjunction with the LCWF Grantmaking Advisory Committee, which is comprised of members of the League who will, through 2030, build and develop the framework for the fulfillment of the League’s mission in perpetuity.

For League Members

League members are encouraged to stay involved! Here are a few ways you can do that:

01  Serve a 3-year term as an advisory committee member. For more information, please contact Lisa Miller at lisafitzmiller@gmail.com.

02  Stay apprised of League events such as conferences or retreats. To ensure you’re on the mailing list, please contact Meg Payne Nelson at nelsonm@ccf-mn.

03 Contact your favorite organization, grab your friends, and volunteer! See the list of FY23 grantees for ideas.

04  Include the League in your estate plan. For more information about directing your gift to the LCWF, please contact Chris Nelson nelsonc@ccf-mn.org.

05  Grow the impact of the League of Catholic Women Foundation by donating your membership dues, or any dollar amount, to the LCWF.

Contribute Now

Lisa Miller (Chair)
Lisa Miller joined the LCW in 1995 after several conversations with long-time member Mary Ritten. Lisa became more active after her children were grown and has served as president for the last three years.
Jean Dunn
Jean Dunn has been a member since the early 2000’s when she retired from her career as a paralegal. She is active in the First Impressions and Tuesday Club ministries and is a part of the Spiritual Book Club. Jean has also served as a board member.
Rita Fox
Rita served as president of the LCW in the early 2000’s after her retirement from a career as an elementary school teacher. She is a very active member and has a hand in lots of things. Her most treasured outreach is Tuesday Club.
Dar Gerber
Dar joined the LCW in the early 2000’s and has served as treasurer on the last two LCW boards. Dar has worked with Tuesday Club and First Impressions.
Marta Melin
Marta has been a member since the early 1980’s. She has been involved in many ministries over the years, including the Mitten Tree, First Impressions, Spiritual Book Club, and numerous other events for members. Most recently she has served as office administrator in the LCW office.
Mimi Palen-Clare
Mimi began working with the LCW in a consulting role. She found immediate alignment with the mission and the direction the LCW was headed in — toward becoming a perpetual grantmaking foundation. Her consulting business, Executive Growth Advisors, specializes in helping organizations across a wide range of industries chart the course for a successful future.
Julie Ann Schmidt
Julie Ann joined the LCW in the early 1990s and has been active ever since.  She redeveloped and led First Impressions, a program that served women returning to the workforce.  She was co-president from 2015-2017 and was instrumental in the sale/move that changed the course of the League.

For Grantseekers

Does your organization serve women in the greater Twin Cities metro area to help them fulfill their potential and build a hopeful future for themselves and generations to come? Is yours a small organization, or one which is filling gaps where certain needs of women are not otherwise being met, or an established organization with a specific initiative or program that achieves this goal? Then please consider submitting a Letter of Inquiry!

Letters of Inquiry will be solicited each year in early April, and organizations or programs best matching the guidelines below will be invited to apply. To find out more, contact Meg Payne Nelson at nelsonm@ccf-mn.org. Organizations may receive up to three years of consecutive funding and will return to eligibility after two years.

FY23 Grant Recipients

Grantmaking Guidelines

LCWF provides general operating or program support to small organizations that assist women in crisis by providing:

  • Job search and employment coaching, or training in financial management.
  • Life-affirming pregnancy and maternal counseling, education, and support.
  • Transitional housing, especially programs that build self-esteem and prevent predation.
  • Programs that support education options, and empowerment of vulnerable women.
  • Retreats and seminars featuring women theologians, women faith leaders, and/or leaders of organizations serving women.

Have Questions?


Christopher D. Nelson, J.D.
Vice President of Development & Donor Engagement
Email Christopher

Meg Payne Nelson
Vice President of Impact
Email Meg