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Dallas Foundation President & CEO Julie Diaz announces J.J. "Book" Wilson Fund.

Foundation Announces Largest Endowed Fund During President & CEO Celebration

May 29, 2024: The Dallas Foundation recently announced the formation of the J.J. “Book” Wilson Fund, a new endowment fund that will have a significant and enduring impact on the North Texas community.

A native of Collin County, John Johnathon “Book” Wilson was born in 1852 on the farmstead of his parents who were pioneer settlers a short distance from McKinney, Texas. The fund named in his honor was established by a family member through an estate gift to The Dallas Foundation that will expand its impact on Greater Dallas forever. The endowed fund is the largest in the Foundation’s history and will essentially double the Foundation’s board-directed grant making in the areas of food insecurity, essential services, and parks, recreation and the beautification of public green spaces including elementary, middle, and high schools.

The Wilson Fund will also support in perpetuity several Greater Dallas flagship organizations including Visiting Nurses Association, Highland Park Presbyterian Church, Trinity Presbyterian Church of McKinney, North Texas Food Bank, Salvation Army, and Southwestern Medical Foundation for cancer research at UT Southwestern Medical Center, among others.

To celebrate the launch of the Book Wilson Fund, three inaugural grants totaling $500,000 were announced during the 2024 President’s Reception held at the George W. Bush Presidential Center on May 29.
The grants are indicative of the Wilson Family legacy and its patriarch, a man described as “an ideal neighbor and loyal friend.”

In recognition of the growth in Collin County where the family lived, worked, and built their legacy, and a community where the need is not always visible, the J.J. “Book” Wilson Fund will grant $100K to The Storehouse Community Center, an organization which feeds, clothes and cares for its neighbors and provides transformational resources such as Project Hope Neighbor Care for individuals in crisis and the Academy Education Program helping neighbors with language skills and job training.

A second grant of $150K will be awarded to Mercy Street, a Christian-based nonprofit providing mentoring and leadership training to inner-city youth in South and West Dallas. Their mentoring and leadership programs provide college and career readiness, workforce development, and financial literacy to prevent youth from entering the cycle of generational poverty.

And lastly, in honor of the patriarch of the family, the Foundation announced a $250,000 grant to the J.J. Book Wilson Memorial Park in Princeton, Texas. This grant will provide enhancements, expansion, and offerings to the park providing more opportunities for greenspace, recreation for children and families, and community connectedness.

“The Dallas Foundation represents permanence and a promise to be focused on Greater Dallas for generations to come,” said Diaz. “We are honored to have been entrusted with the legacy of J.J. “Book” Wilson and his family through this generous and transformational gift, which will allow us to respond to evolving community needs and ensure that we remain Here for Good.”

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