To mark the Hewlett Foundation’s 50th anniversary, our Performing Arts Program commissioned author and consultant Laurie MacDougall to write a history of the program and its grantmaking over the first five decades of the foundation’s history. The history describes how the Performing Arts Program evolved from an initial focus on the issue rooted in Bill and Flora Hewlett’s lifelong personal commitment to the arts—two of the six grants the foundation made in its first year of operation were to arts organizations—to become the largest private funder of performing arts organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area.