About Us

Merchants Foundation was created to guide and align Merchants’ charitable giving to further support life-changing opportunities.

Letter from our Founders

Learn why Mike Petrie and Randy Rogers are excited about the possibilities Merchants Foundation will bring to the communities it serves.


Merchants Foundation, a private foundation supported by the Merchants family of companies and team members, focuses on expanding access to quality Housing, Healthcare, and Education. We invest, volunteer, and steward donor funds to champion causes important to our employees and stakeholders, aiming to create positive change and a lasting legacy. As a geographically diverse company, we aim to empower employees to nominate charitable organizations in the communities where team members live and work, as well as those that we directly invest and/or provide lending products.




Our work is guided by our commitment to the wellbeing and success of our communities.


Our efforts are focused on supporting initiatives that are important to our employees and stakeholders.


Our objective is to strengthen opportunities to significantly impact individuals, fostering lasting positive change.

Merchants Foundation puts a better life within reach by expanding access to three basic needs:


Merchants family of companies’ combined expertise in affordable housing puts us in a better position to make safe, stable homes available to a greater number of people. By funding property improvements and partnering with service providers, we create stability for families, increase healthy outcomes, and enhance quality of life in our communities.


We believe health starts in the home. That’s why we’re committed to increasing access to healthy foods across the communities we serve. We plan to arrange for medical services to provide health screenings, donate to mental health and recovery programs, and partner with providers to ensure the communities we serve have access to safe, affordable healthcare.


Education plays a significant role in determining an individual’s health outcomes and quality of life. By expanding learning opportunities for children, we provide a strong foundation for a successful community. We also support athletic programs where youth have the opportunity to learn respect, sportsmanship and teamwork. Nonprofit organizations can grow with access to capacity building programs, we can invest in.


Merchants Foundation is a catalyst for expanding opportunity to access quality Housing, Healthcare, and Education.

Merchants Bancorp is a diversified bank holding company headquartered in Carmel, Indiana and conducts its business primarily through its direct and indirect subsidiaries, namely, Merchants Bank of Indiana , Merchants Capital Corp. , and Merchants Mortgage , a division of Merchants Bank of Indiana.

Merchants operate multiple business segments, including multifamily housing and healthcare facility financing and servicing, low-income housing tax credit and debt fund syndication, mortgage warehouse financing, residential mortgage banking, agricultural lending, and traditional community banking. With over 30 years of expertise in innovative housing finance strategies and community engagement, we are well-equipped to maximize the power of charitable giving through Merchants Foundation.


Julia Kaercher

Executive Director of Merchants Foundation

Julia Kaercher serves as the Executive Director of Merchants Foundation, where she champions the organization’s mission to improve lives and strengthen communities by facilitating access to quality housing, healthcare, and education nationwide.

Her journey in the affordable housing sector began with her role as the Vice President of Program Development at Merchants Affordable Housing Corp (now rebranded as RDOOR Housing Corp.). During this tenure, Julia played a pivotal role in project development and funding applications for the company and its consulting clients. Additionally, she was instrumental in coordinating various community events.

Julia’s proficiency in writing funding applications has led to her success in securing funding from multiple institutions, further bolstering the efforts to make affordable housing a reality for many. Her commitment to the cause of affordable housing and her not-for-profit expertise have been instrumental in shaping her passion project, Women’s Affordable Housing Network. This national nonprofit organization is dedicated to promoting women’s empowerment and fostering workplace equity for all individuals within the affordable housing sector. Julia serves on the National WAHN Board of Directors as Treasurer and is the President of the Board of Directors for the Indiana WAHN Chapter.

With her diverse expertise, Julia Kaercher is devoted to ensuring that Merchants Foundation leaves a profound and enduring impact of hope and well-being in the communities it serves. Her unwavering dedication to expanding opportunities for individuals to access quality housing, healthcare, and education is a driving force behind her contributions at Merchants Foundation.