First Interstate Foundation

First Interstate BancSystem Foundation

First Interstate Foundation
401 North 31st Street
Billings, MT 59101

Contact Person:  Kelly Bruggeman, Executive Director

Phone: 406-255-5364

Contact E-mail:

Program Funding Areas:

The First Interstate Foundation grants in two main areas: Community Development and Leadership Grants: 

Community Development Grants to nonprofit organizations that provide services to low and moderate income (LMI) individuals and communities within First Interstate Bank markets. Together with First Interstate branches we provide expertise and resources to affordable housing projects, services targeted to LMI individuals, activities that revitalize or stabilize LMI geographies, and activities that promote economic development.

Leadership Grants to nonprofit organizations that give First Interstate employees the opportunity to be community stewards. The Foundation relies on First Interstate branch leadership to recommend funding based on the needs of their respective communities. From there, the branch and the Foundation grant dollars to community projects and activities. Leadership Grants are evaluated based on the nonprofits’ organizational background, community benefit and support, and the strength of the nonprofits’ leadership and financial stability.

Geographic Area Served by Grants: 

The states in our First Interstate footprint including: MT, WY, ID, WA, SD, OR

Types of Support Offered:

Project Support, General Operating, Challenge Grant, Technical Assistance, and Capital Fund Support. We also have a volunteer and gift matching program for First Interstate Bank employees.

Do you fund general operating costs for non-profits? If so, under what conditions?

Yes.  The Foundation will consider requests for general operating expenses if recommended by the local First Interstate branch.

Restrictions/ Limitations:

The Foundation only considers projects that have significant impact within the communities First Interstate Bank serves.

Areas deemed to be less appropriate to receive funding are: individuals, projects that do not have a significant impact within communities the First Interstate Bank serves, projects designed to influence legislation or elect candidates to public office, projects of sectarian or religious organizations whose services are limited to members of any one religious group, projects which clearly represent a duplication of effort, any project that in any manner implies restriction of services based on sex, race, age, and religious affiliation and endowments.

Application Process:

Step 1

Send a Letter of Inquiry to your local First Interstate Bank branch location.

Step 2

If your local First Interstate Bank invites you to complete a grant application, you will be provided with a password to log into our online grant application which is on our First Interstate Website (

The First Interstate Foundation only grants to organizations recommended by local First Interstate branches. Unsolicited grant applications will be referred to the local branch. Requests are reviewed continuously. Please call or email the Foundation for more information at 406-255-5393 or

Step 3

The local First Interstate branch & First Interstate Foundation will review your application and send you an award or declination letter.

Preferred contact from potential grantees:

Please call the Foundation at 406-255-5393 or your local First Interstate Bank for more information.

Additional information:

Please visit our website for a list of prior grants awarded and more information:

First Interstate Foundation continues to refine its grant process. Please review the Foundation website for changes in the process prior to submitting a grant proposal.