National Geographic Society Newsroom Press Releases

The National Geographic Society Surpasses $100 Million in Record-Breaking Fundraising Year

The nonprofit raises $117.9 million; the first time in the organization’s 135-year history that it has raised more than $100 million in a year

Washington, D.C., January 19, 2023 — Today, the National Geographic Society announced its 2022 fundraising total with $117.9 million in new commitments, the largest fundraising total in the organization’s 135-year history. With support from individuals, corporations, and foundations, the Society sets another record-breaking fundraising year and strengthens its dedication to illuminating and protecting the wonder of our world.

The Society invests 100 percent of donor contributions into the organization’s priorities and mission-driven work, including its global community of National Geographic Explorers and innovative programs. Most notably, donors and partners fuel the five key areas of the Society’s focus: Ocean, Land, Wildlife, Human Histories & Cultures, and Human Ingenuity. These philanthropic investments help further achieve the Society’s sustainable business model, a key priority of the organization’s five-year strategic plan, NG Next.

“Every philanthropic dollar advances the Society’s programmatic work and significantly accelerates our global impact,” said CEO Jill Tiefenthaler. “I am beyond grateful for our growing community of donors, supporters, and partners who enable our success. Their generosity has a tremendous impact on our ability to advance new knowledge, elevate stories that build awareness, and equip the next generation with the tools they need to pursue positive change.”

The Society is also launching its newly formed Principal Donors Society, the highest designation for lifetime giving and recognizes individuals, corporations, and foundations who have supported the Society through cumulative philanthropic support of $1 million or more. Principal Donors have distinguished themselves as the Society’s most loyal stewards, investing generously in scientific research, exploration, education, storytelling and Base Camp. The first group of Principal Donors will be commissioned at the inaugural Principal Donors Society induction and celebration taking place on Wednesday, January 25 at the Society’s Base Camp in Washington, D.C.

“I am extremely thankful to our loyal and generous supporters who helped us reach this milestone,” said Jean Case, chairman of the Society’s Board of Trustees. “With their support, we are enhancing our community of Explorers — the changemakers of our time who are driving new knowledge and inspiring transformative change. Thanks to our extraordinary global reach, the National Geographic Society is uniquely positioned to illuminate and protect the wonder of our world, and our donors are instrumental in helping us achieve that mission.”

2022 fiscal year fundraising highlights include:

  • $117.9 million in overall new commitments, a 58% increase from the previous fiscal year
  • 70 new commitments of $100,000 or above
  • 19 new commitments at $1 million or above
  • 100% of giving participation by the Board of Trustees
  • 100% of giving participation by the Society’s Senior Leadership team
  • Record participation in Society membership, engaging thousands of members in the Grosvenor Council; Alexander Graham Bell Society; and leadership giving through the Hubbard Council and the Clark Council (launched in 2021)

“2022 was a monumental year for philanthropic investments towards the Society and we are so appreciative of the support we received from donors and partners,” said Chief Advancement Officer Kara Ramirez Mullins. “We are also thrilled to honor the first group of Principal Donors next week at Base Camp. Their generous donations help engage audiences around the globe through a celebration of exploration and unforgettable storytelling, and I can’t wait to see the ambitious goals we achieve together.”

About National Geographic Society

The National Geographic Society is a global nonprofit organization that uses the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to illuminate and protect the wonder of our world. Since 1888, National Geographic has pushed the boundaries of exploration, investing in bold people and transformative ideas, providing more than 15,000 grants for work across all seven continents, reaching 3 million students each year through education offerings, and engaging audiences around the globe through signature experiences, stories and content. To learn more, visit www.nationalgeographic.org or follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.