Columbia College Chicago

Give to the CBMR

The Center for Black Music Research is a unit of Columbia College Chicago, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Columbia College provides ongoing basic operating support for its staff, space, and supplies. However, the CBMR relies on outside funding to support its public programming, including conferences, performance programs, fellowships, publications, and special research initiatives. A small but significant portion of this funding comes from CBMR Associate memberships, as well as publication subscriptions and sales. Individual, foundation, and corporate contributions are the primary sources of funding that support the Center's outreach activities.

Types of Giving


The CBMR has an impressive record of attracting one-time, multi-year, and continuing grants from more than fifty corporate, private, and government foundations and funding agencies. It seeks grant funds to support its public programming and special research initiatives.

Individual Giving

You can support the Center through individual giving, including memorial gifts, fellowship support, general operating support, and specific campaign support.

Make a donation online

CBMR Ring Donor Program

While the Center enjoys the generous support of its parent organization, Columbia College Chicago, the Center is responsible for raising significant external funding to help support programming. Parallel with the reconfiguration of CBMR Associate memberships, the Center has created the CBMR Ring Donor Program, named in recognition of the vital role that the distinctive African-American ring shout, which “helped preserve the elements that we have come to know as the characterizing and foundational elements of African-American music.”1 Thus the CBMR Ring provides opportunities for individuals and corporations to make external contributions to support the Center’s mission and some of its most important programs, such as conferences, fellowships and awards, student-centered programming, performances, collection development for the CBMR Library and Archives, and general operating support. All CBMR Ring donors are listed on the CBMR Website, on the CBMR blog, in major event program books, and in annual reports. When you become a CBMR Ring donor, you will be acknowledged for the ensuing year as a Ring Donor as indicated below. The minimum contribution level for CBMR Ring is $150. If you would prefer to make a donation in another amount that is greater than $150, you will be acknowledged as a Ring Donor in the appropriate category.

The Lillian Marie Dumas Fund

In October composer Dolores White made a donation of $10,000 to the CBMR in tribute to her mother, Lillian Marie Dumas, who passed away in Chicago on August 5, 2014. Dumas was a strong supporter of the arts and endeavors of educational excellence and cultural enrichment. She was the grandmother of pianist Dianna White-Gould. The donation provides for the establishment of the Lillian Marie Dumas Fund, which will support programs that explore and present works by contemporary African-American women composers/performers. The fund will generate performances, programs, and events that consist of new music landscapes and innovations in classical and jazz works for chamber ensemble. The fund will also provide general support for the well-being and continuation of the CBMR. Contributors to the fund include Frances Walker, Juanita Smith, June Jones, June Mary Heard, E-a Bailey, Mildred Heywood, and Shirley White.

Charitable Bequests and Planned Giving

Regardless of the size of the gift, planned and deferred giving support the Center’s ongoing operation and may provide tax benefits to you and your heirs.

For grants, individual contributions, deferred giving, and in-kind support, please contact:

Morris A. Phibbs, Deputy Director
(312) 369-8550

Material Gifts

The CBMR Library and Archives are a leading repository for scores and music by black composers and for personal papers, recording collections, and research collections. The CBMR welcomes and encourages donations and bequests of materials that will increase the research value and utility of its holdings, particularly sheet music, photographs, film and video footage, recordings, and archival and manuscript materials concerning all aspects of black music and dance. Of special interest to the CBMR are scores and papers of contemporary composers, recordings and other materials about gospel music, and recordings of and materials about popular music idioms throughout the African diaspora.

We encourage donors to consult the CBMR Archivist before donating materials:

Laurie Lee Moses, Archivist and Digital Librarian
(312) 369-7518

Samuel A. Floyd Jr. The Power of Black Music: Interpreting Its History from Africa to the United States. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995), p. 6. [return to text]