Community Involvement & Local News Stories

The Fox Companies, their owners, and staff, believe in the power of giving back. Each year special projects are taken on. Fox Companies philanthropy primarily focuses on with local schools and non-profits.

Elementary Schools
 
Peter and Kim Fox have adopted six local elementary schools; Edison, Kenwood, South Side, Thomas Paine, Westview, and Wiley. They donate their time as well as money to fund classroom upgrades, smartboards, and other technology improvements.  They are also the principal gift givers and organizers of the Champaign-Urbana Foundation Splash Grant Program, designed to help teachers purchase off-budget items to enhance their classroom;  items which were previously paid for by teachers out of their own pockets.
 
Crisis Nursery of Urbana
A recent gift of $50,000 to the Crisis Nursery of Urbana, which provides shelter for victims of child abuse, is but one of many made over the years by the Fox family to ensure that the most vulnerable among us are well and safely cared for.  They have also invested time and money in working to upgrade the neighborhood in which Crisis Nursery is located through their work on the Provena Covenant campus, at the nearby Hampton Inn, their involvement in a Habitat for Humanity home near the nursery, and their efforts regarding the general beautification of University Avenue.
 
Parkland College
Founded in 1966, Parkland College, offers more than 100 associate degree, transfer, and certificate programs, while annually providing nearly 10,000 students with affordable, vocational-technical education.  As a long-time supporter of its scholarship programs and contributor to various classroom improvement projects, Fox Development Corporation maintains close ties both to Parkland College and to its foundation.   The donation in honor of retiring president, Zelema Harris, was utilized to establish an endowment to create five scholarships annually for students interested in the field of health care.  Additional gifts have been used to develop scholarships in other courses of study including business and finance.
 
University of Illinois
Pollinatarium
As the lead donor and developer of the University of Illinois Pollinatarium, the first, free-standing center in the nation devoted to flowering plants and their pollinators, Peter Fox was instrumental in ensuring that every 2nd grade Urbana, and 4th grade Champaign, elementary school student is part of a field trip to the Pollinatarium.  He arranged for local HVAC, plumbing and electrical firms to donate their time and materials for the work required, and recruited a Boy Scout troop to take on site clean-up and prairie restoration.   
 
Division of Intercollegiate Athletics
The Fox Family is an annual contributor to the DIA and, as part of its Loyalty Circle, supports the I Fund for the recruitment of new student athletes.
 
Fox Family Faculty Endowments
A gift of $2 million was made to enhance the university’s recruitment efforts by funding several professorships, with priority given to faculty involved in private business and/or the development and transfer of university technologies to the private sector.

Fox Family Professors:

Dr. Andrew C. Singer,
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Thomas J. Overbye,
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Lizanne DeStefano,
Department of Educational Psychology
 
Krannert Center for Performing Arts
Peter and Kim Fox are passionate supporters of both the center and the museum and have sponsored numerous exhibits including Petals & Paintings.
 
Cozad Lecture Series
The Cozad Lecture Series, through a gift from Kim and Peter Fox and additional friends and family, was established in memory of local businessman V. Dale Cozad.  His work, commitment to the community, and entrepreneurial spirit make him an ideal candidate to inspire future generations.  The lecture series has drawn such speakers as Shahid Khan, owner of the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars and automobile parts manufacturer Flex-n-Gate, Jimmy John’s founder, Jimmy John Liautaud, Kinko’s founder, Paul Orfalea, and Bytemobile’s chairman, Dr. Hatim Tyabji.
 
Cozad New Venture Competition
The Cozad New Venture Competition is designed to encourage students to create new, sustainable businesses.  The competition is administered through the College of Engineering’s Technology Entrepreneur Center.  Companies which have competed include Rithmio and Lumenous Co. Peter Fox funds this competition annually.
 
Cunningham Children’s Home
Each year, The Fox family arranges for “giving trees” to be placed in the Research Park. Each tree is decorated with nametag ornaments of the children who live at Cunningham, and employees of businesses located within the park select an ornament and purchase Christmas gifts for the children.
 
Meals on Wheels
In partnership with Family Service of Champaign County, Fox Development Corporation staff, on the first Friday of each month, delivers nutritious, hot meals.  If you are interested in volunteering your time, please contact the Senior Resource Center.
 
Family Service of Champaign County
Heather Tucker joined the Board of Directors of Family Service of Champaign County in January 2012.  Founded in 1911, this private, non-profit social service agency is the oldest in Champaign County.  For more than 100 years it has been meeting the human services needs across the generations.
 
Rotary Club of Champaign
Ryan Murphy joined Rotary in July 2013.   An international service organization in business since 1916, Rotary International works to bring together business and professional leaders in an effort to render humanitarian services when and where needed.  The more than 1.2 million members serve in more than 34,000 clubs around the world.