Mat-Su Health Foundation Receives Unexpected $15 Million Gift

Wasilla, Alaska – The Mat-Su Health Foundation (MSHF) today announced it received a one-time unrestricted gift in the amount of $15 million from philanthropist and author MacKenzie Scott.

“This donation came as a huge surprise since it was unsolicited,” said MSHF Board Chair, Lebron McPhail. “We are grateful for this generous gift from Ms. Scott.  It’s meaningful recognition of the work we are doing to improve the way systems work for Mat-Su residents and to eliminate the underlying causes of health inequities. We share this honor with the health and human services nonprofits in Mat-Su that continue to innovate and provide supports to Mat-Su residents and communities so they can thrive.”

“While it’s too soon to identify specific uses for the money, we are committed to regranting these dollars in alignment with our theory of change, which calls for us to be data-driven, strategic, and community-driven,” said MSHF President and CEO Elizabeth Ripley. “The timing of this gift lines up well with the completion of the Mat-Su 2022 Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) later this year.” She went on to explain, “The CHNA is a large research project that includes significant community input to help identify and prioritize local health concerns. Our philanthropy team and Board of Directors will use data from the report to inform future spending decisions supported by this large donation.”

In 2021, MSHF awarded $13,462,000 in grants to health and human service organizations and $2 million in academic and vocational scholarships to build Mat-Su’s future healthcare workforce. MSHF plans to award almost $17 million in grants and scholarships in 2022.  MSHF giving is concentrated in five focus areas: Healthy Aging, Healthy Families, Healthy Foundations, Healthy Futures, and Healthy Minds. MSHF also continues to grow programs like Connect Mat-Su, which provides information, referrals, and supports to individual residents, and the R.O.C.K. Mat-Su community partnership, which aims to reduce child maltreatment and promote family resilience.


About Mat-Su Health Foundation: Mat-Su Health Foundation (MSHF) is the official business name of Valley Hospital Association, Inc., which shares ownership in Mat-Su Regional Medical Center. In this capacity, MSHF board members and representatives actively participate in the governance of Mat-Su’s community hospital to protect the community’s interest in this important healthcare institution. The MSHF mission is to improve the health and wellness of Alaskans living in the Mat-Su and the tools it uses include grantmaking, convening of local partners, and policy change. The foundation’s work has resulted in significant improvements in systems that support the health of Mat-Su residents in areas such as behavioral health, child welfare, crisis response, community connections, workforce development, transportation, housing, and senior services. More information is available at