The Joan Trumpauer Mulholland Foundation was established in 2013 by Loki Mulholland, the Emmy-winning filmmaker, author and son of the foundation’s namesake. After screening his documentary, “An Ordinary Hero”, at Ole Miss (the University of Mississippi) it became very evident that young people weren’t learning about the incredible history and lessons of the Civil Rights Movement. “We had college educated students come up to us and say, ‘We never learned any of this,’ which was striking because eighty percent of the film took place in their state,” Loki recalls.
It was because of this experience, and many others like it, that Loki set out to create the foundation in order to preserve, share and continue his mother’s legacy while teaching others about the Civil Rights Movement and how they can make a difference. The foundation’s programming grew from there with seven more films on topics surrounding racism and social justice, DEI training, books, curriculum, and educational programming for teachers and students.
2020, and multiple events prior to it and since, exposed the ongoing systemic issues surrounding race in the United States and the need for further education about our past and necessary courage to confront these uncomfortable truths. The emotional, social and economic well-being of our children and country are at stake. Because of that, the foundation took up the charge to ”’end racism through education.”
We continue to pursue this goal by elevating the African-American experience, help others see how they can contribute to the uplift of everyone, and to make sure that Joan Trumpauer Mulholland’s goal to create a more just and equitable society is met.
Ending racism through education by empowering and uplifting students, educators, employers, and communities by providing resources that strengthen understanding, empathy, and a commitment to equity and dignity for all.
We envision a nation that embraces and acknowledges the value and equitable treatment of all its citizens, where the barriers to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are removed so that everyone can have the opportunity to achieve their fullest potential.
At the Joan Trumpauer Mulholland Foundation we aspire to the following values:
We believe in the inherent goodness of everyone and that education is the key to removing the inhibitors that may impede us from reaching our fullest capacity to exercise those innate, positive qualities. For that reason our programs are easy to access.
We believe that integrity and transparency is essential in being good stewards of the trust and responsibility bestowed upon us. We are accountable to our stakeholders. Donors, volunteers, etc.
We are interested in partnering and collaborating with people and organizations that understand the unique needs of the communities we serve and the idea that progress requires patience and determination.
We seek the voice and input of the intended beneficiaries of our programs and desire to make our programs reflective of the unique perspectives of those voices.
We measure and report on our performance. We believe that we can make a difference and that little actions can have a big impact.
We customize our approach based on each person’s starting point, recognizing that we are all at different stages of understanding.
History & Legacy
The Joan Trumpauer Mulholland Foundation was established in 2013 as a means to help share the life and example of Joan Trumpauer Mulholland with school-aged children as a unique way to learn about the Civil Rights Movement and how they can make a difference.
The foundation was born out of the relatively untold, yet remarkable story of one woman’s courage to do what was right even when it wasn’t easy. Guided by her Christian upbringing and her belief that we should all be treated equally, Joan set out to right the wrongs of her society to create a better world for those in her time and generations to come. Her unusual place in America history provided a unique opportunity to share the lessons of the past with the next generation.
The belief that we need to learn from the past and that everyone can make a positive difference became the guiding principles of the foundation. Today, those values remain while the foundation’s impact and ability to create change continues to expand as we strive to create a more just and equitable society.