The E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation was formed in 1975 as the E. Rhodes Carpenter Foundation by E. Rhodes Carpenter, founder of the Richmond, Virginia based company now known as Carpenter Co.

During Mr. Carpenter's lifetime, the Foundation made a few substantial gifts but for the most part had minimal assets.  In accordance with Mr. Carpenter's wishes, the Foundation received significant funding following his death in 1980.  His wife, Leona B. Carpenter, died a year later leaving substantial assets to the Foundation.  In 1982, the name of the Foundation was changed to the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation.  The Foundation operates independently of and has no connection to Carpenter Co.