SEED was a combination of risk capital and value added support to early stage, groundbreaking projects in ten cities across the United States: Atlanta, Boise, Buffalo, Cleveland, Detroit, Kansas City, Phoenix, Portland, Providence, and New Orleans. Past grants have focused on innovation in arts and culture. Identified by local cultural leaders, the foundation provided grants to small- to mid-size arts organizations at their earliest operational stages, even before those organizations may have had structures in place to execute other fundraising activities. The grants allowed leadership to shore up their capacity so that they could focus instead on expanding and enriching their local cultural landscape.
In 2016, the Foundation expanded the SEED program to Appalachia (Eastern Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia), Houston, and Santa Fe, as well as deepen its support in Detroit and New Orleans. Moving into Appalachia and Santa Fe will allow SEED funding to reach more rural and indigenous communities, while deepening investment in Detroit and New Orleans will further fuel these cities as hotbeds for exceptional cultural practices.