Definition: The Council on Foundations defines a family foundation as one whose funds are derived from members of a single family. At least one family member must continue to serve as an officer or board member of the foundation, and as the donor. The family member plays a significant role in governing and/or managing the foundation throughout its life. Most family foundations are run by family members who serve as trustees or directors on a voluntary basis--receiving no compensation.
Examples: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is an example of a family foundation.