The bottom line of today’s Little Rock Catholic High major gift announcement was almost eight figures:
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, whose sons and son-in-law went to Catholic; San Francisco 49ers owner John York, who went to Catholic, and an anonymous donor have given nearly $10 million in gifts and pledges. York, a 1967 graduate, earlier donated a math and science building to the school.
That’s quite a jumpstart to a $15 million capital campaign.
The gifts are from the Gene and Jerry Jones Family Charities of Dallas, Denise and John York and an anonymous Catholic High alumnus. It includes a matching component and is said to be “nearly $10 million.”
Precise details of the gift in terms of immediate payments and pledges weren’t released, but Jones said the three contributors were giving equal amounts.
Here’s the full release:
The Gene and Jerry Jones Family Charities of Dallas, Denise and John York of San Francisco and an anonymous Catholic High School alumnus have made a nearly $10 million contribution toward the school’s capital campaign.
The Jones family – of which three are Catholic High alumni – announced today during a school assembly a nearly $10 million collective gift, as well as a matching component, to help the school reach its $15 million goal. All contributions made between April 2013 and April 2016 will count toward the match.
“Words cannot express how humbled we are by the three families’ contributions and all the donations we’ve already received during our capital campaign,” said Steve Straessle, principal of Catholic High School. “This challenge is inspiring, and we look forward to reaching our goal of $15 million to continue the necessary renovations.”
York, CHS Class of 1967, and Jones – along with his two sons, Stephen Jones, CHS Class of 1983, and Jerry Jones Jr., CHS Class of 1988; and son-in-law, Shy Anderson, CHS Class of 1981 – are all past contributors to Catholic High.
“We enrolled our sons at Catholic High because of the school’s impeccable reputation and also for the unique opportunity to have our family inspired by the dynamic leadership and personality of Father Tribou,” said Jones, an Arkansas native. “He was a mentor to my sons and also to me, and his commitment to educating and disciplining young men had a wonderful impact on several generations. His presence at CHS remains very strong and serves as the inspiration for our family’s gift and those of many others who will participate in this campaign. His primary goals were always to build a better school while also building outstanding young men, and his legacy will be felt for as long as young men pass through these halls and feel his spirit.”
“This capital campaign will help ensure that the same quality education and experience I received will be passed down to more generations to come,” said York, co-chairman and owner of the San Francisco 49ers. “Just being a part of the Catholic High history and tradition is an honor.”
The capital campaign will support renovations to the school addressing technology integration, mechanical system improvements and critical classroom upgrades.
This is the first major fundraising campaign CHS has undertaken since the current school building was constructed more than 50 years ago. Alumni, family and friends continue to actively support CHS in the pursuit of reaching the goal of attaining the $15 million needed for the renovations.
Benefits of the campaign are already being seen as the installation of new windows, the Roy Davis Athletic Field, cafeteria and gymnasium have all been updated with campaign contributions. The track is currently under construction.
CHS is the oldest and largest Catholic school for boys in Arkansas. For more than 80 years, it has been dedicated to the formation of the whole person, not only molding the minds of young men but also molding their spirits for whatever they choose to pursue in life.
Those interested in supporting this comprehensive capital campaign are invited to contact Anne Carter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 501-664-4625.
About Catholic High
Established in 1930, Catholic High School for Boys is accredited by the Arkansas Non-Public Schools Accrediting Association and is a member of the National Catholic Educational Association. Approximately 700 boys are currently enrolled in the college preparatory high school, the main goals of which are Christian formation and quality academics.