The Bren and Melvin Simon Charitable Foundation Announces Support to More Than a Dozen Organizations

Organizations support the arts, education, the environment, mental health awareness, animal welfare

Carbondale, Colo. (June 30, 2017) – The Bren and Melvin Simon Charitable Foundation announces 18 donation recipients based on their meaningful and impactful contributions to make the world a better place. The causes range from improving patient experience with a healing garden to helping those with mental illnesses and reducing the stigma through education campaigns.
“My late husband Mel and I have always had a passion to help those who are in need,” noted Bren Simon. “Through our foundation, I am committed to making powerful and needed contributions to forge unity around the globe and turn words into meaningful action.”

In particular, the Bren and Melvin Simon Foundation supports the Aspen Hope Center’s mission to foster hope and change to those in emotional crisis by providing needed care and launching an education initiative to decrease the stigma of mental illness.

Bren Simon is supporting the creation of a Sky Garden at the USC Keck Medical Center. The garden will provide a serene environment, filled with flowers, to give patients a place to heal while escaping a clinical setting.

To continue the Aspen Institute’s history of fostering open-minded and action-orientated dialogue on pertinent issues, the Bren and Melvin Simon Foundation is sponsoring the development of a new pavilion and terrace located at the Institute’s location in Aspen, Colorado. The pavilion will be in honor of former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

“At the core of life on our Aspen Meadows campus lie the aspirational qualities of open-mindedness, curiosity, and imagination,” said Aspen Institute President and CEO Walter Isaacson. “Bren Simon has been a longtime friend of the Aspen Institute who understands the importance of setting aside a safe space to examine and exchange ideas. Our campus is such a space, where thousands of people gather annually – from different communities, beliefs, backgrounds, faith, and ideologies – to join in a timeless conversation about the role that we all have in creating a good and just society. In naming our new pavilion in honor of her good friend Aspen Institute Trustee Madeleine Albright, Bren Simon is not only helping us expand our footprint on the campus, it also helps perpetuate a critically important legacy of leadership. Her decision to name the building after someone like Madeleine Albright, who has given her entire life as an educator and public servant, is not only a celebration of this remarkable individual, but an example to us all of civic philanthropy.”

The recent donation recipients include:

  • Aspen Hope Center
  • Carbondale Arts
  • Colorado Rocky Mountain School (CRMS)
  • Friends of the Earth
  • Glenwood Springs Community Concert Association
  • International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)
  • Keck Hospital of USC Sky Garden Fund
  • National Democratic Institute
  • Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS)
  • Ross Montessori School
  • Vincent Foundation
  • Summit 54
  • The Aspen Institute
  • The Buddy Program
  • The Clinton Foundation
  • S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA)
  • University of California, Los Angeles – UCLA Digestive Diseases Center
  • Wilderness Workshop


The Bren and Melvin Simon Charitable Foundation is dedicated to making meaningful contributions to medical research, domestic, and international programs for women and children, the arts, and education initiatives. The Foundation seeks to improve the lives of the underprivileged here in the United States and around the globe. Its mission is to partner with organizations and individuals who can make palpable contributions to a safer environment, better-quality education, and a more peaceful world. The Foundation has underwritten some of the most significant healthcare projects of recent decades, including the Mel and Bren Simon Cancer Center at Indiana University, the Joshua Max Simon Primary Care Center of St. Vincent’s Hospital in Indianapolis, and a state-of-art Digestive Diseases Center at UCLA.