About Us

Our History

The Foundation was established in 1985 by William S. Abell and Patricia O’C. Abell to support qualified organizations in providing aid to people in need in the District of Columbia and nearby Maryland counties.

The Foundation's resources were greatly expanded by a generous bequest from Margaret Abell Powell, part of which was used to establish a fund to support certain ballet and theater activities.

Our Principles 

The William S. Abell Foundation operates in accordance with the principles of the Roman Catholic Church and does not support organizations that perform, sponsor or promote abortion or organizations that refer clients to groups or health clinics that perform, sponsor or promote abortions. 


Our Board of Trustees

Alicia M. Abell

Christopher S. Abell, Sr.

Cindy Work Abell

Greg Abell

Kathryn Abell

Kelley Abell

Kevin O 'C. Abell

Jessica Ganjamie

Tom Ganjamie

Mary Kathryn Nolan

Mike Nolan

Elaine Nurmi

Eleanor Nurmi



Alicia M. Abell, Chair

Elaine Nurmi, President

Christopher S. Abell, Sr., Secretary

Kevin O'C Abell, Treasurer


Foundation Staff

Janet Miller, Executive Director

Claire Nelson, Grants Consultant

Heather Zakrzewski, Finance Manager

Brittanie Hendrick, Executive Assistant- Special Projects

Lisa Brown, Administrative Assistant