Community service is in our blood.

Coastal Blood Foundation Selects Inaugural Grant Recipients

Innovative blood-supply and blood illness projects and programs to be funded in Northeast Florida

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., June 2017 – The Coastal Blood Foundation, an endowment fund created from the merger of The Blood Alliance with OneBlood in 2015, announces its first grant awards totaling $190,000. The grants support the organization’s mission of providing focused funding of research and innovation for blood and blood-related products and services, related education, as well as identifying and supporting community outreach activities that continue the fight against blood-related diseases.

Recipients of the 2017 grants are local, regional and national organizations performing research, education and outreach to improve the health of North Florida residents. They are: The University of North Florida Foundation, St. Vincent’s Healthcare, Mayo Clinic, OneBlood projects, including projects within Flagler Hospital and UF Health/Shands Jacksonville, and the National Blood Foundation. Funds will be fully distributed in early June 2017.

Grant Recipient Details

  • The National Blood Foundation will receive $75,000 to support an early-career scientific grant in transfusion medicine and cellular therapies.
  • OneBlood will receive $10,000 to fund in-school blood drive initiatives, $10,000 for software interface for sophisticated genomic testing, $10,000 for software development to enhance patient safety at Flagler Hospital, and $5,000 for continuing education for physicians, nurses and clinical laboratory scientists.
  • The UNF Foundation will receive $30,000 for corpus funding for the Joseph H. Williams Endowed Scholarship.
  • Mayo Clinic will receive $25,000 to underwrite expenses for the study of pathogen inactivation of red cells for transfusions.
  • St. Vincent’s Healthcare will receive $15,000 for purchase of a dual head microscope system to use in its Clinical Laboratory Scientist Training Program.
  • UF Health Jacksonville will receive $10,000 for a transfusion medicine fellowship support, through OneBlood.

“We are proud to award these grants to important and innovative projects in our community,” said Jim Sebesta, chairman of the board of Coastal Blood Foundation. “These initiatives are creating programs and research to directly improve the health of our region’s residents.”

The foundation was created by the merger of The Blood Alliance with nonprofit OneBlood in 2015. The merger created a more than $15 million endowment to fund the foundation and support grant recipient research, education and outreach initiatives primarily in the five-county Northeast Florida region. The organization’s goal is to manage its endowment and perpetually distribute funds to organizations performing advanced blood supply research, outreach initiatives to improve health outcomes for those with blood-related illnesses, and to support related educational programs.

The mission of the Coastal Blood Foundation is to extend the legacy of the former Blood Alliance, established as the Jacksonville Blood Bank in 1942 through volunteer funding. The Blood Alliance had a 73-year history of providing a safe, available and affordable blood supply to the First Coast and nearby hospitals. The Coastal Blood Foundation is managed by a 100 percent volunteer board and has a partnership with The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida to assist in administering the grant requests and disbursements.

The Coastal Blood Foundation awards grants to U.S. 501(c)(3) organizations and other tax-exempt organizations through a board-led nomination and selection process. It does not accept unsolicited grant requests. The foundation funds research initiatives that support the safety and availability of blood products in all aspects of collection, testing, distribution, storage, use and related services; outreach initiatives with the potential to improve health outcomes for individuals and populations affected by blood-related illnesses and educational forums that promote professional development to assure state-of-the-art services for the future.

Grant making and grant management activities are delegated primarily to two nonprofit foundations having deep expertise in their respective fields of service: The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida, located in Jacksonville, and AABB’s (formerly American Association of Blood Banks) National Blood Foundation. Grants from Coastal Blood Foundation to the National Blood Foundation may be in the form of donor-advised grants to the early-career investigators program, to other innovative projects identified from time to time for multi-year research/education projects, or for other transfusion and cellular therapies identified to improve patient safety.

The Coastal Blood Foundation of Jacksonville is a nonprofit foundation established as an endowment foundation through proceeds from The Blood Alliance/OneBlood merger in 2015. Governed by a fully-volunteer board of directors, the endowed fund seeks to fund annual grants that support advancement and innovation of research, education and outreach initiatives related to the blood supply and blood-related illnesses. The foundation manages a $15+ million endowment fund and invites grantees to inquire annually for funds. The organization’s focus is to improve health outcomes for those with blood-related illnesses while ensuring a safe and reliable community blood supply. For more information visit

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