La Jolla arts, health and science groups share in grants from Conrad Prebys Foundation


In one of the broadest acts of local philanthropy in years, the Conrad Prebys Foundation is giving a total of more than $71 million to 112 organizations across San Diego County to bolster the arts, health care, medical research and other causes.

Several of the beneficiaries are in La Jolla, including Scripps Memorial Hospital, the La Jolla Music Society and the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library.

The $71 million represents the first wave of far-reaching competitive grants that will be awarded countywide. The second wave will come later this year. The foundation likely will dole out hundreds of millions of dollars over the long term.

The funding comes from the estate of Conrad Prebys, a San Diego real estate magnate who died in 2016. Most of his fortune came from developing thousands of multifamily apartments in communities throughout the county.

He donated more than $350 million during his life and left behind about $1 billion, which is in the form of liquid assets and a large real estate portfolio.

Here are grants newly awarded to organizations in La Jolla:

• $6.75 million to Scripps Health to help build a new tower at Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla

• $3.1 million to Scripps Research to study pathogens and leukemia

• $3 million to the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute to study brain tumors and other forms of cancer

• More than $1.5 million to the J. Craig Venter Institute to explore COVID-19 and heart disease

• $1.5 million to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies for vision and cancer research

• $500,000 to UC San Diego to support the Conrad Prebys Music Center

• More than $453,000 to the La Jolla Institute for Immunology for heart and cancer research

• $300,000 to the La Jolla Music Society to cover operating costs. The grant comes two years after the group opened the Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center, which was partly underwritten with $30 million from Prebys personally and from his foundation.

• $250,000 to the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library for improvements to the Parker Building, which houses the Athenaeum’s School of the Arts, and upgrades to technical equipment

— La Jolla Light staff contributed to this report.


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