We are family.

The Moore Foundation is rooted in family and the belief that family transcends bloodlines or birthrights. Family establishes foundation of self, forges generosity of spirit and presence of mind to unite within ourselves. 

It allows us to support and to love and to accept, to build a continuum of resilience from the past, in the current and for the future. 

We believe in family.

Our family is large in number, loud and proud in our existence, and unapologetic in speaking our truth and living it. For us, family is not a passive birthright but an active component of inclusion of those we commit to love and support unconditionally, even those we don’t yet know.

The Moore Foundation represents a legacy grounded by the bonds of family and a tribute to a woman who instilled in us the need to help and guide and support others so we all can thrive as individuals and become proactive participants in our communities.

We build through the lessons of family.

The Moore Foundation is a grassroots community-based organization committed to providing educational opportunities for marginalized, disenfranchised, and under-served communities through scholarships, advocacy and program development.

Gladys Elizabeth ‘Moore’ Richardson

Mrs. Gladys Elizabeth ‘Moore’ Richardson was called Moore instead of Ma by her seven children as well as by the hundreds of other children whose lives she touched. The Moore Foundation honors in name and deed — our mother, grandmother and great-grandmother — for the seeds she so generously planted within us.

Born on June 22, 1915 in Tallassee, Alabama, Moore became a part of the Great Migration from the South in which 6 million African-Americans journeyed away from the Jim Crow laws in the Southern United States to cities in the Northeast, Midwest and West.

In the early 1930s, the family resided in both Harlem, New York and Hoboken, New Jersey. In 1934, Moore settled in Hoboken, New Jersey where she became a significant member of her community as a member of Mt. Olive Baptist Church.  There, she became the founding president of the church’s Nurses Ministry and an officer on the Usher Board.  She also completed her high school education by earning her GED.

It was there, in Hoboken, that Moore made the choice to dedicate her life to service.  She was formally introduced to her life’s work when she became a founding member of the Boards of Directors of both Hopes Head Start and Day Care 100.

She also became a founding member of the Hoboken Branch of the NAACP, and the Hoboken Model Cities Initiative.  She went on to serve these institutions as an educator, social worker and cook.  While working as a cook in Day Care 100, Moore attended Bank Street College of Education and received certifications in both social work and early childhood education. Retiring from Daycare 100 as a social worker, Gladys returned to her roots as a cook at Head Start. 


As the mother of seven (and grandmother to 25), Moore was revered for her kindness and wisdom and food. No one in her presence ever went without food.


She lived her life by the bedrock principles of freedom, justice and equality for all. Righteous, generous and compassionate, she fought tirelessly to ensure that her family and the communities she served were not just seen, they were heard. 

Taking the lessons of her grandmother and mother, our Founder and Executive Director, Charlen McNeil stepped into her purpose:  to be Moore and do Moore to advocate for educational attainment and excellence for all.