Grant Application Process

Connecting with our rural communities to support young minds, invest in our current and future workforce, create vibrant culture and vital communities, improve health and human services, and protect our natural resources.

Funding guidelines

We provide financial support to established, publicly supported charitable and educational organizations that directly impact the communities we serve. View our service area here

The organizations, programs, and projects we fund align with one or more of our priority areas. Collaborative efforts and initiatives that fit more than one of these areas will receive greater consideration for funding.

Priority funding areas:

  • Community, civic, and cultural development
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Health and human services
  • Organizations without 501(c)(3) status. (Exceptions include public and private educational institutions, volunteer fire departments, and rural EMT services.)
  • Requests from outside our service area.
  • Individuals or employee salaries.
  • Lobbying, political, or fraternal groups.
  • Requests for doors, windows, roofs, or heating systems.
  • Programs that pose a potential conflict of interest to the company.
  • Religious organizations, unless the organization is seeking charitable funds in the direct interest of the entire community and not to promote a particular faith.
  • Fundraising events, social events, or goodwill advertising.
  • General operating support for educational institutions.

How to apply

The Otter Tail Power Company Foundation’s Selection Committee and Board of Directors considers financial support on a per-project basis. In general, grant awards total no more than 20% of overall project cost. We provide funding for many grant requests within the $1,000 to $5,000 range and selectively award larger amounts for significant projects aligned with our priority giving areas.

We review and decide on requests under $5,000 in February, May, August, and November and meet twice annually in May and November to determine and distribute funding for requests over $5,000. Submit your application prior to the first of the month in which you’d like your application reviewed. For example, to be considered for a grant in May, you must submit your application no later than May 1.

Colleges and universities also may complete an online application through our Scholarship Program to request funds for student scholarships. The Foundation does not award scholarships directly to students.

Be prepared to include:

  • A list of your organization's officers and board of directors.
  • An overview of the project for which you’re requesting a grant.
  • A summary of how your request fits one or more of our priority funding areas.
  • An outline of your anticipated impact and how you plan to measure that impact.
  • A description of your organization, its history, and the physical location(s) it serves.
  • A commitment to completing a Minnesota Common Report Form after fulfilling your project's objectives.
  • Your organizations tax exempt status letter under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Code.

Visit our Smartsheet form to complete the online application for funding consideration.

Contact us

Have questions about the application process or what our Foundation funds? Please reach out.
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 218-739-8200

Please note that the Otter Tail Corporation Foundation is a separate foundation of our parent company, Otter Tail Corporation.