Kirschner Trusts

Kirschner Trusts
Grant applications open:Wednesday, August 17, 2022
Deadline to request application access:Friday, September 23, 2022, at 5:00 pm
Grant Application Deadline:Friday, September 30, 2022, at 5:00 pm

Download the Grant Guidelines below for information on eligibility, how to apply and other important details.

The son of a Polish immigrant, Phil Kirschner moved to Muskogee in 1905, the same year oil was discovered in Oklahoma. After spending much of his young life helping his family run their mercantile business, he decided to pursue his own business ventures. By the age of 22, Phil had drilled his first well and, in the 1950s, he opened the North Glenpool field.

Louisiana native, Roberta Freedman moved to the Indian Territory of Fort Gibson with her family in the early 1900s where her father set up shop as a merchant. Roberta left the area after high school to attend college in Missouri but eventually returned to Muskogee in 1937 with her daughter, Miriam, following the death of her first husband.

Roberta and Phil married in 1954 and, together, the couple became quiet philanthropists, focusing much of their charitable giving on nonprofit organizations in and around the Muskogee area. After Phil’s death in 1981, five charitable trusts were established to ensure their legacy would live on. After Roberta’s death in 1985, her daughter, Miriam Freedman, continued administering the trusts.

In 2013, after overseeing the family’s foundation for more than 30 years, Miriam transferred the Kirschner Trusts to the Oklahoma City Community Foundation. Today, the Kirschner Trusts award grants to charitable organizations that support causes important to the family. Funding areas include:

  1. Jewish Education, Culture & Heritage
  2. Educational & Vocational Opportunities for Children & Young Adults with Disabilities
  3. Eastern Oklahoma Charitable Organizations

The Kirschner Trusts also provide scholarship support to students, ages 25 and under, who have been orphaned or are living in foster care or a residential facility through the Oklahoma Youth with Promise Scholarship program.

Questions & Clarifications

You are welcome to address questions or concerns by emailing or by contacting Leslie Woodward at or (405) 606-2911.