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Attention Midwest Funders!

Many local, state, regional, and national funders identify climate as a key priority area. Even more include energy, housing, and environmental justice in their portfolios. Building a more sustainable and equitable transportation system is essential to progress in all of these focus areas, yet our understanding of current investments by foundations and the work of advocates in this sector is limited. 

The Midwest Mobility Scan, supported by the McKnight Foundation, a TFN member, with matching contributions from the SRAM Cycling Fund and TransitCenter, also a TFN member, will provide that broad assessment in seven Midwestern states: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin.  

This baseline scan will identify  groups working on electrification (including light, medium and heavy duty vehicles and charging infrastructure) and on mode shift (including transit, biking, walking, freeway fighting, parking reform, pricing, etc.) The scan will identify the foundations and networks that support them. Given the importance of efforts to dismantle systemic inequities, the report will identify organizations that are BIPOC-led or working specifically with disproportionately impacted populations and communities. The scan will additionally identify national funders who invest more broadly in transportation work and identify the climate and sustainability policies of the relevant state departments of transportation. 

The project is led by Martha Roskowski, the coordinator of TFN’s Mobility and Access Collaborative, and Zoe Kircos of City Thread. A report summarizing the information is scheduled to be delivered in May of 2023. 

If your organization funds mobility or engages in mobility advocacy in the Midwest and you have not been contacted for this scan, please contact Martha Roskowski at

About the Mobility & Access Collaborative

Transportation is the circulatory system of a community. Shifting from our car-dominant systems to more sustainable and equitable options will improve climate, opportunity, health, safety and quality of life. While the words “mobility and access” rarely show up in a foundation’s mission statements, many funders are increasingly attuned to connections between their goals and the shortcomings of our current transportation system.

TFN’s Mobility and Access Collaborative is an action-oriented effort that recognizes the urgency for ambitious — and quickly implemented — solutions to limit the devastating impacts of climate change. The collaborative brings together place-based, regional and national funders to share stories, examine best practices and explore critical issues.

The collaborative recently launched the Mobility Fund, which supports local advocacy efforts. Learn more about the Mobility Fund’s first round of grants here.

The collaborative is led by a core group of regional, place-based and national volunteers who are shaping and guiding work on transportation, including funders from the Barr Foundation, The Bullitt Foundation, Energy Foundation, Jacob and Terese Hershey Foundation, TransitCenter, The George Gund Foundation, The Joyce Foundation and The Summit Foundation.

Connect & Engage

TFN’s Mobility and Access Collaborative embraces an agenda that includes learning, outreach and action. We work to provide funders with opportunities to share and learn from fellow leaders in philanthropy as well as key thought partners across a variety of sectors. Participants engaged in this funder collaborative have the opportunity to:


  • Deepen their knowledge about critical issues and opportunities related to transportation, mobility and access through funder-only webinars and other learning opportunities.
  • Expand their professional network and explore opportunities for collaboration at in-person meetings of the funder collaborative and other TFN events.
  • Share ideas, insights and resources directly with members of the funder collaborative through a dedicated listserv.
  • Explore opportunities to co-invest or pool funds on high priority projects
  • Amplify their learning and best strategies across TFN communications channels, including blogs, social media and newsletters.

How can I participate?

TFN working groups and initiatives are open to participation from TFN members and non-members alike. We welcome participation from grantmaking organizations, philanthropy serving organizations, local governments, and infrastructure groups that support funders. If you would like to subscribe to the Mobility and Access Collaborative in order to receive newsletters and other resources, click here.

To learn more about how your organization can become a TFN member, please visit our member services resource page here.

Congestion Pricing on the Move

Webinar Recording

Power for Policy: Mobility & Access Advocacy

Webinar Recording

To Transform Bus Networks, Understand Networks of Power: TransitCenter’s Steven Higashide

TFN Blog

Design Committee

Lisa Jacobson

Barr Foundation

Elizabeth Love

John Mitterholzer

Learn More

For more information about TFN’s Mobility and Access Collaborative, contact Martha Roskowski
at or 303-895-0951.