q Greenwood Fund - Denver Foundation

Greenwood Fund

Supporting the conservation of museum artifacts

The Denver Foundation is pleased to invite qualified nonprofits to apply for funding from the Greenwood Fund, a donor-advised fund of The Denver Foundation. The Greenwood Fund supports conservation and collections care projects within the museum community of Colorado, New Mexico, or Wyoming. Grants typically range from $1,000 – $5,000. The focus of this funding opportunity is on small museums with collections and conservation budgets less than $1 million.


  • Your museum must be located in Colorado, New Mexico, or Wyoming.
  • Your museum must be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization or have a 501(c) (3) fiscal sponsor. The only exceptions are religious and governmental institutions.
  • The conservation and care budget must be less than $1 million.
  • The museum must be open to the public on a regular basis.
  • It is preferred that the museum have permanent collections on exhibit.

Grant awards given in previous years are no guarantee of future grant awards.

Not eligible for funding:

  • Building expansions (unless for conservation labs)
  • Computers, digitizing projects, or collections photography
  • Events
  • Education
  • Endowments (except for conservation)
  • Exhibitions
  • General operating support
  • Individuals
  • Marketing or public relations
  • Routine building maintenance
  • Salaries
  • Scholarships
  • Travel

Additional information

The Greenwood Fund supports two types of museum projects: 1. Conservation treatment of art and objects and 2. Collections care, including supplies, equipment, and personnel including contract personnel.

Conservation is a discipline that seeks to extend the lifespan of artworks and cultural heritage objects through interventive treatments such as cleaning, reassembly, stabilization, or by providing an environment that helps protect against agents of deterioration including insect pests, light, vandalism, and chemically unstable storage materials.

An important aspect of collections care is the use of appropriate, approved storage materials and furniture which is typically the purview of a curator/collections manager.

Application Checklist

All application questions and requested attachments were developed to understand if/how the request fits within the purpose of the Greenwood Fund. Failure to answer application questions with the information described below and/or failure to provide the required attachments will result in an automatic decline. 

For the application, you must provide: 

  • Project description, including: 
    • A list of the specific items that will be the focus of this proposal. Categories of items are acceptable, such as textiles, newspapers, maps, clothing, furniture, pottery, paintings, photos, etc.  
    • The number of items that will be the focus of your proposal. Approximations are acceptable (e.g., “We plan to conserve between 5-10 hats.”) 
    • For conservation and collections care, describe the timeline, methods, and materials that you will use to care, rehouse, and/or conserve the items. 
    • For conservation treatment requests or interventive treatments, must include a treatment proposal that outlines procedures, costs, and time estimates.  
    • Please keep in mind that you must follow best practices in collections management, conservation, and preservation. To learn more about these practices, resources can be found on the Colorado-Wyoming Association of Museums website: www.cwam-us.org 
  • Information about the management of the project: 
    • The names and credentials of personnel involved in the conservation/collections care project. 
    • Interventive conservation treatment projects must be managed by a professionally trained conservator.  
    • Collections management projects can be managed by a layperson, but the materials and methods must follow best practices.  
    • Please include a resume for collection managers, conservators, and/or contractors (each resume should not exceed two pages). 
  • The project budget, including detailed expenses and income, and a complete description of materials and supplies.  
    • Funds must be used within 12 months.  
    • Funds may be used to acquire archival supplies, and outside services for the purposes of conservation or collections care. 
    • You may include links to the product/supplier to help reviewers assess their appropriateness for the project, but this is not required. 
  • The museum’s overall collections and conservation budget for the year. 
  • If funded in the previous year, include your final report. See the grant portal for instructions. 
  • Photos of artifact(s) for project request in one file as a PDF. 
Carl Patterson Photo

About the donor

The Denver Foundation has been honored to manage the Greenwood Fund for the past decade, supporting small museums in Colorado, Wyoming, and New Mexico according to the vision and passion of the fund’s founder.

Charles Greenwood Patterson III, known as Carl, was well-known in the museum community for his expertise and leadership in art conservation. Throughout his career, Carl lived and breathed conservation, working with numerous museums around the world, and in the Metro Denver area.

Over 18 years at the Denver Art Museum, he outfitted three conservation laboratories, consolidated collection storage, undertook collection surveys, and played a key role in the design and opening of the Hamilton Building. Instrumental in elevating and expanding the conservation department, acquiring equipment, and improving storage, Carl was immensely creative in his ability to write grants and raise funds.

In 2009, Carl retired as Director Emeritus of Conservation. The following year, he created the Greenwood Fund. Carl passed away in February 2020. Through the ongoing work of the Greenwood Fund, The Denver Foundation is honored to continue his legacy and passion for conservation.