Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Washington, DC   |  https://hancockinstitute.org
GuideStar Charity Check

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

EIN: 52-1544030


The Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz is a nonprofit education organization with a mission to offer the world’s most promising young musicians college level training by internationally acclaimed jazz masters and to present public school music education programs for young people around the world. The Institute preserves, perpetuates and expands jazz as a global art form, and utilizes jazz as a means to unite people of all ages, backgrounds and nationalities. All of the Institute’s programs are provided free of charge to students, schools and communities worldwide. The Institute’s programs use jazz as the medium to encourage imaginative thinking, creativity, a positive self-image, and a respect for one’s own and others’ cultural heritage.

Ruling year info



Mr. Thomas R. Carter

Main address

5225 Wisconsin Avenue, NW Suite 605

Washington, DC 20015 USA

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Subject area info

Arts education


Performing arts education

Youth organizing

Population served info

Children and youth


Artists and performers

NTEE code info

Arts Education/Schools (A25)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Music (A68)

IRS subsection

501(c)(3) Public Charity

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Tax forms


Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz Performance

Begun in 1995, this intensive, graduate-level college program enables a select group of the world's most gifted young musicians to study tuition-free with legendary jazz musicians and educators including Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Dianne Reeves, John Scofield, Dee Dee Bridgewater and Danilo Perez. Hancock and Shorter serve as the program's Distinguished Professors. This performance-based program has become the model college jazz education program for the world. In fall 2021, the Institute welcomed the Class of 2023 to the program at The Herb Alpert School of Music at UCLA in Los Angeles.

Population(s) Served
Artists and performers

In 2000, the Institute launched an Internet-based jazz curriculum (www.jazzinamerica.org) designed to be taught in every 5th, 8th, and 11th grade public school American history and social studies classroom in the United States. Offered at no cost, the curriculum examines the evolution of jazz styles, the contributions of important performers, and the musical techniques involved in the creation and performance of jazz. A public school touring component of the program, led by renowned jazz artists including Antonio Hart, Vanessa Rubin and Bobby Watson, has reached tens of thousands of students and teachers. The most recent addition to the curriculum is The Blues and Jazz - Two American Classics (www.thebluesandjazz.org).

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Established in 1987, this is the world’s most prestigious jazz competition. Each competition focuses on a different instrument, and features an all-star judging panel. The Competition has launched the careers of pianists Marcus Roberts and Jacky Terrasson; saxophonist Joshua Redman; vocalists Jane Monheit and Cecile McLorin Salvant; bassist Ben Williams; trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire; and many other jazz greats. Dozens of semifinalists have forged successful careers as jazz performers and educators. The first place winner receives a guaranteed recording contract with Concord Records.

Population(s) Served
Artists and performers

Since 1989, the Institute has gone into public schools across the United States and around the world, introducing millions of young people to the cultural richness of jazz. Master classes, workshops and concerts are presented by leading jazz musicians and educators to help students foster a sense of creativity and self-esteem and to provide children with role models. Programs are provided on a daily basis in Washington, DC and Los Angeles, and on a weekly basis in Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Miami, the Mississippi Delta, New Orleans and San Francisco.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

The United Nations and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated April 30 as International Jazz Day to highlight jazz and its diplomatic role of uniting people in all corners of the globe. The Institute serves as the lead nonprofit organization charged with planning and promoting this annual worldwide celebration. International Jazz Day is recognized on the official calendars of both the United Nations and UNESCO. Every year on April 30, universities, libraries, schools, arts centers, organizations of all disciplines, UNESCO and United Nations missions, embassies and government outposts around the world host special events and concerts to honor this revered musical art form that for over a century has brought together people of different cultures, religions and nationalities. Each year, International Jazz Day is celebrated through thousands of programs in more than 190 countries on all seven continents, and reaches more than 3 billion people worldwide across print and digital press coverage, television and radio transmissions, public performances, education and enrichment programs, and social media.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Our programs discover and launch the careers of the next generation of great jazz musicians, help students from marginalized communities prepare for success in life, and engage with and enormously expand the global jazz community. We provide in-school and after-school education programs in Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, Newark, Washington, DC and the Mississippi Delta, with additional outreach and education offerings serving participants across the United States and internationally, in urban, rural and remote communities. Our public school programs primarily serve students from low-income communities and young people of color; with additional offerings focused on reaching stakeholders of all ages in more than 190 countries on all seven continents.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), classroom/teaching artist observations,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    During the pandemic, the Institute pivoted its educational programming to a virtual format. As the pandemic abated and instruction gradually returned to an in-person mode, Institute stakeholders requested that some virtual options be made available on a permanent basis. In response, the Institute has continued with an ongoing selection of online learning modules. These offerings, provided completely free of charge, have enabled the Institute's programs to make an additional impact on students across the United States regardless of geographic location and socio-economic status.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    The Institute’s evaluation and feedback processes have given our students and partner educators greater visibility into how we structure and adjust programmatic offerings. They have driven greater buy-in and investment from students and teachers in both participating in and shaping the Institute's work at their respective schools. Our stakeholders know that we care about their experiences in the program. This has made them more willing to come forward and offer suggestions and requests regarding how we serve their particular needs. We also stay in touch with program alumni to track longer-term outcomes.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,


Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31
done  Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant. info

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2019 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 0.63 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2019 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 0.5 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2019 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 21% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

Source: IRS Form 990 info

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

This snapshot of Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation $420,022 -$1,248,896 $407,607 $142,486 -$1,050,477
As % of expenses 11.9% -20.1% 9.5% 4.0% -32.1%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation $397,853 -$1,269,073 $386,725 $124,004 -$1,056,208
As % of expenses 11.2% -20.4% 8.9% 3.5% -32.2%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $3,824,834 $6,160,819 $4,166,801 $4,029,409 $2,539,059
Total revenue, % change over prior year 15.4% 61.1% -32.4% -3.3% -37.0%
Program services revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.1% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Government grants 9.3% 2.5% 8.2% 3.2% 6.6%
All other grants and contributions 88.1% 97.1% 91.5% 96.6% 92.4%
Other revenue 2.5% 0.4% 0.3% 0.2% 1.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $3,540,593 $6,209,715 $4,309,194 $3,536,923 $3,269,584
Total expenses, % change over prior year 8.7% 75.4% -30.6% -17.9% -7.6%
Personnel 30.1% 16.5% 24.5% 28.9% 36.2%
Professional fees 13.6% 11.3% 7.8% 33.3% 10.5%
Occupancy 6.3% 3.9% 5.3% 6.3% 7.3%
Interest 0.3% 0.1% 0.0% 0.4% 0.7%
Pass-through 6.9% 2.8% 5.7% 5.4% 5.3%
All other expenses 42.9% 65.4% 56.7% 25.6% 40.0%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Total expenses (after depreciation) $3,562,762 $6,229,892 $4,330,076 $3,555,405 $3,275,315
One month of savings $295,049 $517,476 $359,100 $294,744 $272,465
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $25,896 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $3,857,811 $6,747,368 $4,715,072 $3,850,149 $3,547,780

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Months of cash 0.5 0.8 0.6 0.7 0.2
Months of cash and investments 0.5 0.8 0.6 0.7 0.2
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 5.9 0.9 2.4 3.4 -0.2
Balance sheet composition info 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Cash $151,455 $388,487 $207,314 $192,350 $65,599
Investments $1,102 $100 $0 $0 $0
Receivables $2,103,839 $1,284,180 $1,116,850 $1,613,620 $552,130
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $182,630 $158,195 $184,090 $184,090 $186,022
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 70.5% 78.6% 78.9% 88.7% 90.8%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 21.4% 31.8% 9.3% 21.3% 36.9%
Unrestricted net assets $1,790,642 $521,569 $908,294 $1,032,298 -$23,910
Temporarily restricted net assets $100,000 $1,300,000 $750,000 $1,100,000 N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $150,000 $150,000 $150,000 $150,000 N/A
Total restricted net assets $250,000 $1,450,000 $900,000 $1,250,000 $1,569,952
Total net assets $2,040,642 $1,971,569 $1,808,294 $2,282,298 $1,546,042

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization


Mr. Thomas R. Carter

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Highest paid employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of highest paid employee data for this organization

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Board of directors
as of 10/21/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Herbie Hancock

jazz pianist and composer

Herbie Hancock, Chairman

Jazz pianist and composer

James Farmer, Treasurer

President, James E. Farmer Consulting

Thomas Carter, President

Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz

Irina Bokova

Former Director-General, UNESCO

Dee Dee Bridgewater

Jazz vocalist, actress and radio host

Frank Gehry


Brett Hart

President, United Airlines

Marcus Miller

Jazz bassist, composer and producer

Wayne Shorter

Jazz saxophonist and composer

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 10/17/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation

No data


We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.


Fiscal year ending
There are no fundraisers recorded for this organization.