The Schenectady Foundation is a philanthropic trust. Contributions are held in an endowment fund that is managed by the Trustees. Several other separate trusts provide annual income to the Foundation that is used for grants and scholarships.

The Foundation's governance responsibilities are conducted by three distinct entities:

Distribution Committee
Community leaders serve on the Foundation's Distribution Committee, ensuring that funding goes to address effective programs and community priorities. In addition to making decisions on grants and scholarships, the Distribution Committee evaluates the investment performance of the Trustee Banks, and assumes responsibility for addressing the broader governance needs of the Foundation.

Trustee Banks
Banks with trust powers in Schenectady County are eligible to serve as Trustees of the Foundation. The Trustees hold and invest funds, generate income for the charitable purposes of the Foundation and perform fiscal oversight responsibilities. Trustco Bank and Key Bank serve as Trustees, and are represented on the Trustees Committee.

Appointing Authority
The Appointing Authority is responsible for appointing a majority (5) of the members of the Distribution Committee. The Trustee Banks are responsible for appointing two members of the Distribution Committee. The members of the Appointing Authority are: the president of Union College, board officer of the Chamber of Commerce, board officer of the United Way and the president of Schenectady County Community College.

The Schenectady Foundation, Inc.
A supporting organization, The Schenectady Foundation, Inc. was formed in 2009 to serve as the operating arm of the Foundation, and to conduct its programs and services.