TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) - Mississippi's largest community foundation is 45 years old this year, making it the oldest foundation in the state.
Thursday, supporters and staff gathered for the Create Foundation's 2017 annual meeting, celebrating four and a half decades of growth and local impact.
Create gave its McLean Award for Philanthropy to Terry and Kathy Jackson, who supported Sanctuary Hospice House, the Salvation Army, Regional Rehab, the Palmer Home for Children, and the Tupelo Lee Humane Society with their charitable giving.
The Toyota Wellspring Education Fund at Create also announced that it is giving $1.5 million in grants to eight school districts over three years.
Robin McCormick, this year's chair of the Create Foundation, says she believes synergy is the key to Create's long-term success.
"The biggest thing that I see we do," she said, "is that we try to get everybody on the same page so that we can all work together- because working together, we can get things done."
Mike Clayborne, Create president, echoes McCormick's sentiment.
"There are a lot of things that our communities and counties can work together on," he said. "And we do that through our Commission on the Future of Northeast Mississippi. Create has assets of $115 million, which makes us one of the top three grant-making foundations in Mississippi."
The Create Foundation was established in 1972 with a mere $1500 in assets. Its mission is to improve the quality of life in the 17 Mississippi counties it serves.
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