Our Funding Priority

Vitality Arts

Inspiring creativity in adults 55
and better


Founder's Message

E.A. Michelson Philanthropy is now into its 11th year of creative aging leadership. We are continuously learning, advocating for, and financially supporting the field of creative aging. Equity is rightfully now part of the vocabulary when discussing ageism and ableism in our country.

We have been busy! Vitality Arts grants have been distributed to more than 100 organizations across the United States choosing to advance creative aging in their communities. Advocacy and capacity-building grants have been distributed to the American Alliance of Museums and the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies. Quality community art education has increased nationally due to the professional teaching artists who teach creative aging classes. I could list many more accomplishments by our team members, Executive Director Teresa Bonner, Program Officer Lindsay Lewis and Communications and Events Manager Sarah Drebelbis. They have worked tirelessly and are appreciated every day.

We are proud to have spent $19.5 million since 2012, actively supporting nonprofit organizations to become a part of the movement of creative aging. We are giving thought to what the next steps are in our philanthropic work going forward. So many possibilities will present themselves – we have no doubt.

Thank you for your interest in our work.


Ellen A. Michelson

Founder and President
E.A. Michelson Philanthropy

“I move through my life every day enriched by art. Sadly, sometimes I forget to 'stop and smell the roses.' When I do stop and take notice, my day has just become a bit more fragrant. Art makes the world a better place.”

— Ellen A. Michelson

A bit about us

Teresa Bonner
Executive Director
(415) 547-9025

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Lindsay Lewis
Program Officer
(612) 377-8400

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Suzanne Paki
Grants Manager
(612) 377-8400

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Sarah Drebelbis
Communication and Event Coordinator
(612) 377-8400

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