c/o Choate Hall & Stewart LLP
Two International Place, 30th Floor
Boston, MA 02110


Preliminary applications must be submitted by 2 p.m. ET on March 1 or September 15. If the submission dates fall on a weekend, then the applications are due by 2 p.m. ET on the prior Friday. The Trustees and their Advisors will review the preliminary applications and decide which applicants will be invited to submit final applications. Each applicant will be informed of the Trustees and Advisors' decision by March 15 or October 4. Those applicants invited to submit a final application must submit the online form and have the paper copies to us by 2 p.m. ET April 5 or October 31. If the submission dates fall on a weekend, then the applications are due by 2 p.m. ET on the prior Friday. There are no exceptions to either the preliminary or final application deadline and instructions.

Instructions for the application process are outlined below.

Stage One:
Preliminary Application

All preliminary applications must be submitted online through the approved form (link below), and the following information must be included:

I. A brief description of the organization (unnecessary if we have previously made a grant to the organization). 
The applicant must be an organization described in paragraph (1) or (2) of Section 509(a) of the Internal Revenue Code (i.e., a publicly supported charity or a governmental unit).

II. A description of the project or need. 

III. A budget for the project with any transaction costs broken down.  We will not approve proposals seeking funds to reimburse the applicant for an acquisition of land or a conservation easement or restriction that has already closed.

IV. If the project is for land preservation, please include a map or photo. 

V.  . If the applicant is seeking a grant to acquire land, the applicant must disclose the ultimate owner of the land, whether there will be any conservation easements or restrictions imposed, and the holder or holders of such easements or restrictions (if no conservation easements or restrictions will be imposed, the applicant must describe the legal mechanism for permanent protection of the land).  

VI.  If the applicant is seeking a grant to acquire a conservation easement or restriction, the applicant must identify the ultimate owner of the land.

VII.  The contact person for the organization and the email address provided must be the person responsible for the application and for the follow-up to this Preliminary Application.  Those applicants that are chosen to submit another a Final Application will be emailed only, there will not be a mailed invitation.

Stage Two:
Final Application (***BY INVITATION ONLY***)

Please read the instructions on our email invitation to submit a final application carefully as there may have been changes to our procedures.  Those invited to submit a Final Application must provide the information by (1) electronic web form (please follow the Final Application link at the bottom of the page) and (2) please provide two paper copies of the form with attachments by U.S. postal mail.

I. Description of the organization
•    Its history, goals and principal accomplishments, list of current Board of Directors and staff.
•    Last audited financial statements, or last financial statements if statements are not audited.
•    A copy of its latest IRS tax exemption letter.
•    Attach a resume of the person overseeing the project.

II. Description of the project or need
•    Start with a Project Name and a one sentence summary.
•    What will be accomplished?
•    Does it have a reasonable assurance of success?
•    Where appropriate, please give a brief description of the scientific rationale.
•    How does it seek to “break new ground”?
•    Provide a thorough breakdown of its cost. How much of that is “overhead”?

III. Capability to carry the project through
•    What are the qualifications of the person or persons responsible for implementation?
•    If other funds are required, will the project be started before the balance is in hand?
•    Will a Wharton grant “make or break” the project?
•    What criteria will be used to measure success?
•    In due course, will you provide the Trustee with an objective appraisal of the project’s success?

In addition to the electronic web form, a total of two (2) double-sided paper copies of the Final Application and attachments,
and one (1) copy of audited financial statements must be mailed to the following address, without staples or bindings (paper clips or binder clips are acceptable) by 2:00 p.m. ET April 5 or October 31.
The cover sheet of the copies sent in must be in the format of the Final Application online form (link provided below). Please do not include brochures or other materials that are not double-sided 8.5 x 11 copies.


Please direct ALL inquiries to

William P. Wharton Trust
c/o John M. Cornish, Trustee
Choate Hall & Stewart LLP
Two International Place
Boston, Massachusetts 02110

Unfortunately, it is not possible for the Trustees and Advisors to meet with prospective applicants. The Trustees and Advisors meet in May and November and the final grant applicants will be notified within ten (10) business days after the Trustees and Advisors' meeting whether or not they have been awarded a grant. If a grant has been awarded to the organization, a check will be included with your notification of award.

Very truly yours,

John M. Cornish Electronic Signature
John M. Cornish, Trustee

Application links:
  Preliminary Application
  Final Application (by invitation only)