David and Alisa Weise: Tech Grants

NET WORTH: Unknown


FUNDING AREAS: Environment, Teen Pregnancy

OVERVIEW: David Weise, his wife Alisa, and brother Daniel move their philanthropy through the Burning Foundation, which works for environmental causes and deals with teen pregnancy prevention in the Pacific Northwest.

BACKGROUND: David Weise graduated from Princeton with a Ph.D. in molecular biophysics. He cofounded software company Dynamical Systems Research (DSR) in Oakland, which sold to Microsoft. Weise went on to be the lead person responsible for Windows 3.0, which substantially strengthened Microsoft’s position in the software industry. Weise was also on the faculty of the electrical engineering department at Stanford University.


ENVIRONMENT: The foundation’s environmental programming focuses on the Pacific Northwest, particularly threatened rivers and forests, nurturing native fish populations, and conserving land and open space for ecological and recreational purposes. It gives preference to local and statewide groups over “national organizations with projects in the Pacific Northwest.” Grantees have included Coalition of Oregon Land Trusts, Northwest Environmental Defense Center, Conservation Northwest, Oregon Natural Desert Association, Wild Salmon Center, and WaterWatch. It’s worth noting that Daniel is a member of Climate Solutions and spends time tracking climate change literature.

TEEN PREGNANCY: The Burning Foundation’s grantmaking includes “school-based health and education programs, mentoring projects, and community clinic programs providing information and services on birth control, choice, and sex education.” Past grantees include Okanagan Family Planning, Neighborcare Health, and Planned Parenthood of Greater Washington and North Idaho.

OTHER: The family has earmarked funds for select other causes, including some in the Jewish community. Alisa sits on the board of Jewish Family Service Seattle.

LOOKING FORWARD: Expect the family’s two-pronged grantmaking to continue.


Sybil Ackerman-Munson
Burning Foundation
715 SW Morrison Street, Suite 901
Portland, OR 97205