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Contact: Carol Harmon, The Columbus Foundation 614/251-4000, ext. 113, or 614/738-2755 (cell)


Philanthropic awards are presented to Bob and Mary Lazarus, Jack and Jane Kidd, and the Furniture Bank of Central Ohio, for its impact in helping families in need furnish their homes

COLUMBUS, Ohio (September 12, 2013)—The Columbus Foundation, the nation’s seventh largest community foundation, announced an historic all-time high in contributions at its annual Celebration of Philanthropy held today in Davis Hall. The Foundation, its family of donors, and guests celebrated an extraordinary year and the 2013 philanthropic award winners.

“There is a spirit of philanthropic excellence in central Ohio focused on strategic investments that can positively change lives and build a better community,” said Douglas F. Kridler, president and CEO of The Columbus Foundation. “We celebrate seven decades of serving as the trusted philanthropic advisor to individuals, families, and businesses who place value in creating funds, utilizing community knowledge to make decisions, and supporting effective nonprofits that strengthen our region.”

In 2012, contributions by donors to new and existing funds reached a record-setting $326.4 million—a 31 percent increase over 2011. Assets totaled $1.52 billion and are held in 2,007 unique funds, one statewide affiliate, and 29 Supporting Foundations.

Grantmaking by the Foundation, its donors, and Supporting Foundations topped $96.6 million, benefiting 2,579 nonprofits. Grants from Donor Advised Funds accounted for nearly 50 percent of overall grants—a 12 percent increase over 2011.

Many donors continue to include the Foundation in their future charitable giving plans. Planned gift expectancies known by the Foundation total more than $843.7 million. In 2012, 44 new planned gifts were created with a projected value of $23.3 million.


Three philanthropic awards were presented to those making unique contributions to communities in central Ohio and beyond.

Harrison_Sayre_AwardRobert Jr. (Bob) and Mary Lazarus
received the Harrison M. Sayre Award for outstanding philanthropic leadership in central Ohio. The award is given in honor of The Columbus Foundation’s founder and 25-year volunteer director. Mr. and Mrs. Lazarus are part of the fourth generation of the Lazarus family and longtime residents of Columbus. In addition to his leadership role at the F. & R. Lazarus & Company, a family business founded in Columbus in 1851, Mr. Lazarus served on numerous nonprofit boards, including the Ohio Arts Foundation, Ohio Arts Council, COSI, Columbus Symphony Orchestra, and Community Shelter Board. He has also been a trustee of the Columbus Youth Foundation, a Supporting Foundation at The Columbus Foundation, since 1976. Mrs. Lazarus is past president of Action for Children, a founder of the Columbus Metropolitan Club, and a co-founding chair of the Women’s Fund of Central Ohio. Click to download (PDF)

Lead_Phil_Award2John D. and Jane Kidd received the Leadership in Philanthropy Award of Community Foundations, Inc., a statewide affiliate of The Columbus Foundation. The Kidds have called Jackson County home for the past four decades and focused their philanthropic efforts on strengthening the area, primarily through investments in education. Mr. Kidd formerly served as chairman and CEO of Oak Hill Financial, and as the president of the board for the University of Rio Grande, where he was named a Fellow. Mrs. Kidd has served on numerous community boards, including the YMCA and the Jackson County Health Department. The couple created the Kidd Family Foundation, a Supporting Foundation in 1999 to manage their family’s charitable giving. Click to download (PDF)

TCF_AwardThe Furniture Bank of Central Ohio received The Columbus Foundation Award for making a significant difference in our community. Founded in 1998 as Material Assistance Providers Inc., the Furniture Bank is the largest provider of free furniture services to families living in poverty in central Ohio. The Furniture Bank helps families fill bedrooms, kitchens, and family rooms, and in 2012 distributed 5,400 mattresses, 5,000 dressers, and 8,600 kitchen chairs. In addition to donated goods, 12 percent of furniture given to families is handmade by volunteers. A unique partnership with Marion Correctional Institute allows inmates to craft dressers and bedframes for the Furniture Bank. Click to download (PDF)



The Ohio Benefit Bank (OBB), one of the Foundation’s strategic investments, reached a remarkable milestone—helping Ohio’s working poor access more than $1 billion in benefits and tax credits. Over the past seven years, the Foundation and its donors have granted more than $3.1 million to help OBB expand to include access for free tax filing, federal student aid, Veteran’s benefits, nutrition assistance, and childcare benefits.

The Weinland Park Collaborative was launched in 2010 and includes many partners working with The Columbus Foundation, including Cardinal Health, JPMorgan Chase Foundation, The Ohio State University, Campus Partners, The City of Columbus, and United Way of Central Ohio. Last year, Weinland Park was selected as one of three neighborhoods nationwide to receive a seven-year, multimillion-dollar commitment from the Baltimore based Annie E. Casey Foundation to improve the lives of children and their families. Six million dollars awarded in state and federal historic tax credits to save 23 buildings on East 11th Avenue also boosted the revitalization effort.

About The Columbus Foundation

The Columbus Foundation is the trusted philanthropic advisor® to more than 2,000 individuals, families, and businesses that have created unique funds to make a difference in the lives of others through the most effective philanthropy possible. Serving the region for 70 years, The Columbus Foundation is the seventh largest community foundation in the United States today, with asset totaling $1.1 billion. The Foundation’s online resource, PowerPhilanthropy®, makes it possible for everyone to be informed and access valuable information about our community’s nonprofits. For more information, visit or call 614/251-4000.

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