Whiteman 4G Foundation History
In 2006, John Whiteman created a new foundation for his 11 grandchildren. The children, then ages 10 to 16 actively worked with John to create the Whiteman 4G Foundation. They elected to name the foundation Whiteman 4G because these 11 grandchildren were the fourth generation of the Whiteman Family to be involved in philanthropy. At the organization’s first meeting, John O. Whiteman discussed the major philanthropic spheres with the grandchildren to consider when making grants.
The Whiteman 4G board selected the following areas of focus:
- Human Services, including Children’s Issues, Abandonment, Responsible Parenting, Harassment and Bullying
- Health, including Children’s Cancers, Diabetes
- Education, including Scholarships and Infant Brain Development Research
During its first year of operation, the Whiteman 4G Foundation made grants to Chrysalis, Banner East Children’s Hospital, East Valley Child Crisis Center, Liberty Wildlife and UMOM New Day Center.
Through the Generations
“The foundation allows the kids to see how people live every day. They live in a protective bubble. It’s been good for them to see that not everyone has the benefits in life that they have, but it also allows them to see they can make a difference in the lives of others.” – Jeff Whiteman, CEO of Empire Southwest and father of four Whiteman 4G members
“We are in such a unique position in our community, in that we have opportunities to change things for the better. Even if it’s only a drop in the ocean, we can be part of something great. The legacy left to us by our forebears is that we share and do good with what we have been given. This is what I want to do and this is what I want to pass down.” – Christy Whiteman Wilson, mother of five Whiteman 4G members
Innovative School Initiative
In the spring of 2010, the Whiteman 4G Board came to a consensus that they would like to further define a focus to their grant making. The board embarked on a strategic planning process that covered a myriad of possible topics and after input from all members, the group decided to support elementary schools for a three year period at $10,000 a year. These dollars were to support public school projects that would not be possible without the Whiteman 4G dollars. Interestingly, the Whiteman Whiteman 4G board members are all products of the public school system.
Four districts were invited to submit a response to a RFP. The Chandler and Creighton School Districts were awarded the 3 year commitment for innovative projects. The Chandler is implementing a Core Knowledge program to increase literacy through an interdisciplinary approach. The Creighton District has initiated a creative new model for parent teacher conferences.
In the spring of 2011, the districts provided an update on the progress of these initiatives; the board was pleased with the outcomes. This program concluded in the fall of 2012.
Current New Focus
The board held a recent strategic planning session to review the board members’ current interests. After a review of the Foundation’s grants history, and a polling of the board, the board members came to a consensus to focus on children’s basic needs to include: health, food, clothing and education. Applications are accepted between September and October with awards being made in December. Nonprofits serving these needs in Maricopa County can apply. Please submit a project description on the contact segment of the website.