Who We Are

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Progress occurs when courageous, skillful leaders seize the opportunity to change things for the better.

Harry S. Truman

Who We Are

The Truman Foundation is the nation’s official living memorial to our thirty-third president and The Presidential Memorial to Public Service. Created by Congress in 1975, the Foundation was President Truman’s idea.

President Truman did not want a bricks and mortar monument. Instead, he encouraged a living memorial that would give life to the values of service that had animated his career. In that spirit, the Truman Foundation is a place that nurtures and supports future generations who answer the call to public service leadership.

The hallmark of the Foundation’s work is the Truman Scholarship, the premier graduate fellowship in the United States for those pursuing careers as public service leaders. 

Our mission makes us a beacon for public service for young people across the United States. Our vision is of a country that deeply values public servants. In pursuit of this mission and vision, we offer multiple programs for Truman Scholars.

Supporting the Future of Public Service

We identify young people at an important inflection point in their development—when they are college juniors—and recognize and reward their commitments to devote themselves to public service.

We take risks by investing in leaders when they are young. Although certainly accomplished, many are still largely untested at that age. Yet when you look at what the now more than 3,000 Truman Scholars have achieved, our risk-taking is paying off.  For a small investment – at the right time – the returns are impressive.

Trumans are working in the West Wing, sitting on the US Supreme Court, and serving in federal and state legislatures. They are transforming nonprofits, delivering crucial services and organizing for change in local communities.  And Truman Scholars are leaders in academia, research, and health care.  They can be found in every branch of the Armed Services.  And many make a difference beyond the borders of the United States.

Join with us and support the future of public service. DONATE