10 Years of Thank Yous – A Tribute to Aixa Beauchamp

May 6, 2024

By Sandy Kendall, Senior Editorial Director

The Latino Equity Fund at the Boston Foundation will celebrate Aixa Beauchamp's contributions to the launch and growth of the fund as part of ¡Pa'lante! - LEF's celebration at Bow Market in Somerville on June 21 at 6 p.m. Click here to learn more!

As the Latino Equity Fund advances into its second decade, we are honored to recognize a driving force behind the first 10 years of amazing growth and impact.

That force is Aixa Beauchamp. Her vision, matched by her fierce energy and determination, and guided by her deep experience in the fields of philanthropy and business management, brought the Fund to life in 2013. Aixa joined forces with equally visionary co-founder Juan Carlos Morales to launch the fund, originally called the Latino Legacy Fund—the first and still only philanthropic fund in Massachusetts devoted specifically to the prosperity of Latinos. It has established an endowment to serve the community in perpetuity, advised by Latino community leaders.

What sparked that vision? Having been Boston-based through much of her education and career, Aixa saw that, without the Latino community's contribution to population growth over the last several decades, Massachusetts could have lost congressional representation, federal funding, and more. She says, “It's clear that the state's full potential cannot be reached without enabling the full participation and contribution of its Latino community.”

Aixa Beauchamp
Latino Equity Fund co-founder Aixa Beauchamp

She also knew first-hand the challenges that the community continues to face in education, health care, and housing—disparities that hinder economic mobility and perpetuate poverty. “Growing up in a working-class Latino family,” she says, “I’ve seen both the immense resilience of our communities and the systemic obstacles—underperforming schools, residential segregation, and limited access to capital and good jobs—that hold back so many. These barriers thwart dreams and prevent economic mobility, a reality deeply personal to me.”

Aixa began her career in the philanthropic sector as a program officer at the New York Community Trust and continued as a consultant for the Association of Community Trusts in London and the Rockefeller Foundation in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In 2002, she founded Beauchamp & Associates consultancy. Her varied work in philanthropy showed her that the percentage of philanthropic dollars going to organizations led by people of color was persistently in the low single digits. This was a trend she wanted to disrupt. “Driven by a desire to dismantle these historical inequities, [we co-founded] the Fund,” she says. Looking back, what stands out is the trust the first donors had in her and Morales: “Eleven donors helped get things off the ground. We’d be talking to them and, literally on a napkin, would sketch out the idea about the goal and where we’d go with the Fund. That’s the power of a network. Now, proudly Latino-founded, Latino-governed, and housed within the Boston Foundation, we leverage our influence and platform to elevate diverse voices and perspectives.”

Since its inception the Fund, renamed the Latino Equity Fund (LEF) in 2020, has raised more than $9.3 million and supported 133 Latino-led and Latino-serving nonprofits in Massachusetts and Puerto Rico, notably mobilizing action after Hurricane Maria and the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, under the directorship of Javier Juarez, whom Aixa helped appoint, LEF has its sights on an ambitious campaign to raise $15 million by 2030 and double its annual grantmaking—to $1 million per year.

It’s all impressive. But with Aixa involved, not surprising. Her nearly 30 years of experience in strategy, leadership development, and organizational effectiveness make her a superb advisor, board member, and consultant—for LEF and others, such as Boston Children’s Hospital Trust. In 2018, Boston Magazine named her one of the 100 Most Influential People in Boston, and the Women of the Harvard Club Committee honored her with Boston’s Most Influential Woman Award in 2015.

“I always marvel at Aixa’s ability to stay riveted to the goal despite constantly changing terrain,” says TBF’s Chief Philanthropy Officer Kate Guedj. “For example, she was determined to serve the community by responding in a meaningful way to Hurricane Maria. The formation of the powerful Mass United for Puerto Rico fund was stunning. She made a difference in countless lives.”

The Fund is positioned to thrive, thanks to Aixa, the impressive committee that helps advise it, and the leadership of LEF Director Javier Juarez, whose relentless dedication has propelled the Fund to notable heights. Today it stands at the forefront of a movement for equity. Through strategic grantmaking, applicable research, powerful partnerships, and nurturing community engagement, it is enhancing the ecosystem of Latino nonprofits dedicated to transforming disparities into opportunities for our communities.

As she gets ready to pass the baton after 10 years’ extraordinary service as co-chair of the Advisory Board, Aixa looks back at the Fund’s growth and forward to its future. She says, “When you invest a lot of yourself in a cause, you want your legacy to be building something that can sustain itself without you. I’ll forever be a supporter but I’m so excited to see the staying power of the Latino Equity Fund, because systems don’t change overnight. LEF represents the values of commitment to community and to the organizations lifting our youth, helping our seniors, and more. And let’s not forget the incredible devotion of the committee that has powered the LEF for a decade! We’re in it for the long haul and we know we’re going to win."