Pet Project

Russell and Phoebe Perry were more than animal lovers. Mr. and Mrs. Perry believed deeply in the fair treatment and care of animals and wanted to do everything they could to help those in need. With no children of their own, Mrs. Perry’s goal was to use their resources, both during their lifetimes and after, to help as many animals in North Texas as they could. Russell and Phoebe set up charitable funds at Communities Foundation of Texas to ensure that their money would be able to do the most good. The Perrys were able to work closely with Communities Foundation of Texas and their CPA, John Solana, to ensure that their passion turned into real change during and far beyond their lifetimes.

“Phoebe really was a guardian angel for animals in North Texas.” – James Bias, President of SPCA of Texas.

Phoebe approached every giving opportunity with insight, perspective, compassion and careful scrutiny.  After Mr. Perry died in the late 1980s, Phoebe wanted to make sure that their giving continued after her lifetime as well. Nothing gave Mrs. Perry more joy than seeing her gifts used in a responsible way and Phoebe was able to revisit her CFT fund agreements many times throughout the years as her giving needs changed. “Since Communities Foundation of Texas has no charge for agreement revisions, Mrs. Perry was able to add to and adjust her funds as often as she liked,” stated John Solana, Phoebe’s long-time financial advisor.

The Perry’s planned their deferred giving to include traditional vehicles as well as an IRA. Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Perry’s thoughtful planning, the causes that they cared about will continue to benefit through their funds at CFT. This will allow their legacy of generosity to continue for years to come.

Impact in the Wake of Tragedy

On July 7th as we were all devastated by the violence downtown and the loss of lives of our dedicated police force. Early in the morning of the 8th, Communities Foundation of Texas staff were at work to find the best way to respond and be impactful in our community.  Quickly we were able to:

  • Open CFT’s fund for disaster relief and recovery to receive outside contributions and grants for middle to long-term support. CFT’s intention in these instances is to encourage all contributions for immediate support, but to also provide a place for people to support recovery and healing after the immediate needs are met. We ask “What will the community need to get beyond the initial damage and destruction?” Many donors and CFT fund holders have given money to support the long-term healing and community unity work needed to be not only whole, but better.
  • Quickly provide the online giving form and support for WFAA to seek contributions for the Assist the Officers Foundation. This page went live and was broadcast by WFAA and the Tegna network across the state and has resulted in more than $300,000 raised for victim support. We are grateful to be a long-time partner with WFAA in all of their charitable outreach.
  • Assist Craig and Kathryn Hall with utilizing their full network to raise dollars for all shooting victims. CFT has had a long relationship with the Halls and when the Halls wanted a quick and efficient way to raise support, they turned to CFT to create a new fund. Their giving page quickly in order to offer a $100,000 match through the family foundation for all contributions raised.

CFT was able to act quickly and with an eye toward the future of our community in our response due to the strong relationships we have developed with donors. The ability to use these strong bonds to be quick, efficient, responsive and timely for our fund holders and our community is critical, and it is the reason we are all proud to be part of CFT.

CFT Expanding for Business!

Communities Foundation of Texas has enjoyed a strong partnership with the business community in Dallas and in our region for many years.  The success of the Entrepreneurs for North Texas program of CFT is a striking example of this significant relationship with companies wanting to make a beneficial impact within their communities. Operating as an outsourced community affairs department, Entrepreneurs For North Texas has provided its member companies with the due-diligence and resources to assist them in developing a company culture of good corporate citizenship in a way that is good for their business for over 15 years.  Through these important relationships in the business community, the demand for additional business services has led the leadership of CFT to begin an expansion of these core business services for small, mid-size and large companies serving the North Texas communities.

With the expanded business services, Communities Foundation of Texas can assist your business clients and your companies with starting or growing your company’s giving program. Continue reading “CFT Expanding for Business!”

GIVEWISELY Sparks New Approaches to Philanthropy

GIVEWISELY IS A ONE-OF-A-KIND INITIATIVE of Communities Foundation of Texas that teaches
donors the ins and outs of philanthropy and how to develop their own unique approach to charitable giving. This series of classes and workshops is open to donors of all ages.

When CFT fund holder Gigi Gartner was in the class, she had just finished an event announcing recipients of the Common Cents Scholarship fund that she leads now, thanks to her mother, Louise, passing the torch. “GiveWisely gave me the opportunity to think about how I will build on my mother’s community impact and continue to create my own.”

Participants met for five sessions that explored various ways of defining their own values and giving style, and the class culminated with them each outlining their personal giving statements and charitable budgets. GiveWisely classes offer donors a unique chance to learn from experts, share conversations, and create a custom giving plan in a warm,confidential environment. Gartner closed, “I highly recommend CFT’s GiveWisely class for those who want to learn how to structure more powerful giving.”