The Living Heritage Foundation

Reviewed in 2021 by the Sacramento Region Community Foundation

$16,350 Raised by 52 Donors

27% complete

$60,000 Goal

The Living Heritage Foundation (LHF), based in Sacramento, CA was founded by Susheel Bibbs (see below*). OUR FOUNDATION, a 501c3 charity since 2012, fills a special niche in support of the arts and media, and we invite donation partners to help us grow -- as we champion the careers and dreams of outstanding artists who have already taken the time to enrich our programming with works by/about African Americans and women. We help those giving artists to soar even higher through their careers and dream projects.

Many grants exist for students and apprentices, but not for established professional artists -- those who are beyond regular intern, apprentice, and scholarships. As successful, perpetual contract workers, they must fund their own travel, lodging, production costs, web-sites, lessons and coachings, auditions, and special projects -- something essential during these times. They too need a hand, and LHF stands uniquely to give them that hand with your assistance -- a hand that enriches arts and media programming for us all.

Last year we gave sponsorships, saw one of our streaming films gain acclaim, and gave Covid-period development grants for 2021-22. Now we will see the fruits of those projects. some will involve programming that can be performed both live and seen online.

*Susheel Bibbs, our Founder-Artistic & Executive Director, is an award-winning classical singer and filmmaker and an Emmy-award-winning Public Broadcasting radio-TV Producer. She has won 26 recent film-festival awards and is known especially for her award winning documentaries, one-woman, touring historical-performances on Mary Ellen Pleasant, California's Mother of Civil Rights!" and her research & touring of works on the Classical song of black composers ( With this Foundation, she hopes to assist other professionals who share her concern for this type of programming.

We serve California artists and some other US artists and have national advisors and an amazing national board that enable us to connect artists to new opportunities -- Sharleen Cooper Cohen (renowned Broadway producer & best-selling author), Iona Morris (an acclaimed TV actress-director & recent director on the TV series Blackish), Lou Ziskind (former S.C.O.R.E. executive and administrative expert), baritone Robert Sims (an acclaimed operatic/concert singer), Linda S. Goodrich, Ph.D. (celebrated choreographer & former University arts administrator), Deborah Pittman (award winning writer, solo/symphony instrumentalist, and ceramicist), and Board President/Executive/Artistic Director Susheel Bibbs (award-winning classical singer & filmmaker), listed above. 

Bibbs oversees our programs -- fiscal sponsorship, project and emergency grants, project mentoring, and special projects that support our mission -- but projects are evaluated and approved by Board members and esteemed advisors in the appropriate areas of the arts.

Since 2014, we have grown and met program needs with the generous assistance of donors. During Covid, LHF gave important, emergency grants to meet artists' needs along with our usual fiscal sponsorship, mentoring, and grant-assistance programs for California-based artists.  We also continued to serve other outstanding professionals and a few organizations, such as The Pittsburg Festival Opera, that had made offerings centered on African Americans or women of note.

The Foundation has already made an impact internationally, having in 2019 presented a landmark recital on the concert Spiritual with 16 acclaimed artists at Lincoln Center (touring in 2022 to Chicago and San Francisco); launched the winner of a dramatic Dora Award in Toronto; sponsored 3 short films on civil rights and African-American women of note (one now on PBS);  sent artists to audition in Europe and sing opera in China, and to make a recording in New Zealand. We have also brought US artists back to the States to perform at the MET, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and Spoleto Festival, as we  sponsored international-award-winning projects for stage and screen-- An amazing record for a small organization. Thanks to your gifts, WE HAVE BECOME SMALL, BUT MIGHTY!!


In summary, the mission of The Living Heritage Foundation (LHF) is to provide grants, fiscal sponsorship, and mentoring to advance the careers of accomplished arts and media professionals who have enriched our programming significantly, during their careers, by presenting works by/about African Americans or women of note. LHF fills a niche by helping these fine artists and co-produce programming in keeping with our mission.


1. To raise $40,000 to advance our grant, co-sponsored, special programs, and administrative support. -- We hope to make more substantial and quarterly artist grants, to extend our emergency grant program, to give an annual Lifetime Achievement Award, to expand existing film-program distribution, to publish lost masterworks, to sponsor 3 online concerts and an a master seminar.

2. To raise $3,000 to produce an LHF trailer, and to upgrade our files for distribution and our Website for the Foundation -- The upgrade will allow our website to house posters, videos, and links to LHF-supported works by our grantees and fiscally sponsorsees. This increase their visibility online.

3. To raise $6,000 to meet our office equipment and assistance needs: Part of this will fund upgrades in software and part-time office coordinator (a former, trained intern), who can help build a group of volunteers and assist with our outreach and programs.

4. To raise $7000 for special projects:

Recent, ongoing special projects have involved digitizing two of America's first musicals, which were lost works commissioned and popularized by the African-American divas The Hyers Sisters in the 1870's, co-producing 3 films about them, and helping to sponsor a concert and DVD on 3 living Masters of the Spiritual at Lincoln Center. In such projects, our investment of funds has been very important and has required a large investment in travel, time, expertise, and mentoring.

5. To raise $4000 in travel funds to foster our co-sponsoring and Mentoring programs so that, in a limited way, our artists can better interact with legendary mentors and we can advance our currently co-sponsored film and touring program.

This year we will:

- Publish the two Hyers' musicals that we have digitized, making them available to the public for the first time since their last performance in 1894

- Expand our media presence -- a Foundation website and promo mentioned, and co-produce touring master concert on the Spiritual

- Enhance the distribution/touring of our latest Hyers Sisters and our previous Masters of the Spiritual touring projects

MEETING THE NEEDS ABOVE (1-5) will require video editing, Art and Web design, and some production costs, but the gains will far outweigh the costs. For example, updating our Web site and creating a Foundation promo to display our programs effectively will connect our work with our grantee/sponsoree sites. This will attract many more donations and applicants.

Our expansion will require a part-time assistant, who will receive an hourly fee, but our work will become more effective and we will again volunteers to advance our programs.

Organization Data


Organization name

The Living Heritage Foundation

other names


Tax id (EIN)


Mission Category

Arts & Culture

Operating Budget

$50,001 - $100,000

Organization Need

Board Members, Funding: Program, Space: Office or Other, Technology, Volunteers


123 Mint Leaf Wy.
Sacramento, CA 95838

Service areas 0


Sacramento, CA, US





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