Greater Texas Foundation (GTF) is built on a long history of service to the students of Texas.
The organization from which GTF evolved was founded in 1981 as the Greater East Texas Higher Education Authority. At the time, students borrowed from private lenders to pay for their higher education under the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP). Greater East Texas incentivized this practice by serving as a nonprofit secondary buyer for loans in southeast Texas and by providing information to schools and students about the FFELP. Over time, the organization grew, adding a loan servicing arm and acquiring a loan portfolio.
In 2001, the board elected to expand the organization’s charitable purpose by splitting it into two entities. GTF would function as a public charity, while LoanSTAR Funding Group would hold the organization’s loan-related assets. In 2005, GTF sold its stock in LoanSTAR and invested the proceeds to create an endowment. Over the next several years, the foundation awarded millions of dollars in grants to educational programs, particularly those focused on math and science.
Over time, the foundation’s mission and strategy evolved along with an improved understanding of Texas students. Today, GTF functions as a private foundation with a vision for all Texas students to have equal opportunity to access and succeed in postsecondary education. The foundation’s mission is to support efforts to ensure all Texas students are prepared for, have access to, persist in, and complete postsecondary education. GTF pursues its mission by forming partnerships, supporting research, sharing knowledge, and making grants, with a particular focus on helping underserved and disadvantaged populations. The foundation is guided by a strategic plan focused on specific regions, issues, and roles to optimize our impact on students. To learn more about this work, please visit the Strategy and Grants pages.