Founders' Council

You can continue the legacy of the Field Museum’s founders.

Your gift’s impact

Join Chicago's most active civic leaders in supporting the Field Museum as a Founders’ Council supporter. The Founders’ Council welcomes annual donors who give $2,500 or more.

Your generosity is an investment in preserving and studying the natural world for generations to come. You help our staff study and care for our collection of 40 million objects and specimens and access technologies that illuminate the mysteries of our planet. Gifts from Founders’ Council donors make it possible for our scientists to travel the globe and conduct fieldwork, all in pursuit of conservation and cultural understanding. You enable us to create innovative exhibitions and public learning programs to inspire all ages.

When you join the Founders’ Council, you become part of a community of passionate, civic-minded peers invested in our shared future—both for the Field and our planet.

Founders’ Council events

As part of our Founders’ Council, you’ll enjoy behind-the-scenes access to our collections and the scientists who study them. Plus, receive invitations for exclusive online and in-museum events. From learning about taxidermy techniques to fossil hunting, each event connects you with our scientists and passionate civic-minded peers invested in the future of the Museum.  Missed a virtual event? Founders’ Council donors enjoy access to all previously broadcasted presentations. Email us at for help accessing the full library.

Concierge service

Founders' Council members have access to an exclusive concierge line. Contact us at 312.665.7773 or for help with coordinating tickets and building your visit itinerary for a day at the Field. At least 48 hours notice is required. This service is not available for large events.

Donor levels

All Founders’ Council donors get the privileges of Museum membership, including:

  • Exclusive communications, including our biweekly enews
  • Invitation to our annual Members’ Nights
  • Invitations to exclusive exhibition previews and opening events with content experts

Founders’ Council donors are invited to enjoy all-access visits for groups of ten plus (10+) throughout the year. Additional Field Museum experiences and opportunities are available at various gift amounts.

GiftAdditional Opportunities
  • Annual behind-the-scenes tour* and reserved Bistro seating*
  • Access to the Founders’ Council Donor Lounge at Members’ Nights
  • Exclusive Founders’ Council events featuring Field Museum scientists, scholars, and latest science*
  • Recognition in Stanley Field Hall and in the Museum’s Annual Report
  • Invitation to attend and support our Annual Gala
  • Invitation to exclusive exhibition previews and opening events with content experts
  • Dedicated Staff Liaison to enhance your Museum experience
  • Concierge service to navigate tickets, parking, and a personalized itinerary (48 hour notice)

All of the above, plus:

  • Invitation to help scientists unpack items following fieldwork*
  • Scientist-led behind-the-scenes or exhibition tour* (48 hours notice)

All of the above, plus:

  • Arrange a private conversation with a scientist* (48 hour notice)
  • Annual opportunity to reserve meeting or work space*
  • Invitation to exhibition preview or hard hat tour*
  • Opportunity to join domestic trips led by Museum scholars
Chairman's Circle:

All of the above, plus:

  • Invitation to meet with the Museum President and CEO and/or Museum leadership*
  • Opportunity to join international trips led by Museum scholars*
  • Invitation to select opportunities with our Board of Trustees and science communities
  • Invitation to Field Forward Symposium

*Subject to availability, health regulations, and museum limitations

Founders' Council Leadership 

  • John Podjasek, Co-Chair
  • Ryan Ruskin, Co-Chair


As a Founders’ Council supporter, you’re ensuring the future of the Field Museum. Contact us at or 312.665.7773.