Algur H. Meadows established General American Oil Company of Texas in 1939 and led it to become one of the nation’s most successful independent oil and gas production companies. The success of GAO provided Meadows and his wife, Virginia, the financial resources to support charitable organizations throughout Texas.
Believing that their lives had been richly blessed, the couple established The Meadows Foundation in 1948 to benefit the people of Texas. In doing so, they stipulated that the Foundation’s philanthropy would continue in perpetuity under the guidance of family members and trusted advisors.
The Meadows legacy has contributed greatly to enriching the lives of countless Texans in the areas of arts and culture, civic and public affairs, education, health, and human services. The Foundation has also developed current grantmaking initiatives in support of public education (particularly in the areas of early child development, enhanced reading and math instruction and teacher and administrator preparation), mental health, and the natural environment.
The Meadows Foundation is among the most recognized private philanthropies in the country, both for its grantmaking practices and for its active engagement in advancing the field of private philanthropy. For additional information, visit The Meadows Foundation.
Greater Texas Foundation emerged in its present form following the election of its predecessor entity, the Greater Texas Student Loan Corporation, to expand its charitable purpose. Headquartered in Bryan, Texas, the foundation serves the citizens and educational institutions of Texas by supporting initiatives that increase rates of post-secondary enrollment and completion for all Texas students, with a particular focus on students who may encounter barriers to post-secondary success.
Additionally, the foundation invests in math and science education, more specifically in programs from the fourth grade through high school that aim to increase post-secondary readiness by emphasizing completion of Algebra II. Algebra II is shown to be a strong predictor of post-secondary readiness and success. The foundation’s hypothesis is that high-quality math and science education is essential to success both within the educational system and in the working world.
The foundation realizes that many of the challenges facing Texas are enormous, much bigger than we alone can address. For this reason the foundation works hard to engage other state and national funders to partner with in achieving our specific goals and objectives. During our time as a grantmaking entity, we have come far and learned much about the challenges that Texas students face on their road to post-secondary completion. This is why we continue to focus our efforts on helping students overcome many of these challenges.
Through the strategic planning process, the foundation laid extensive groundwork to be more focused in its funding as it moved into 2010 and beyond. Importantly, this included the following revisions to the foundation’s vision and mission statements:
Vision. The foundation’s vision is for all Texas students to have equal opportunity to access and succeed in post-secondary education.
Mission. Greater Texas Foundation supports efforts to ensure all Texas students are prepared for, have access to, persist in, and complete post-secondary education. We pursue our mission by forming partnerships, supporting research, sharing knowledge, and making grants, and we put particular focus on helping underserved and disadvantaged populations.
Through this process, the foundation learned a great deal about the challenges that Texas students face on the road to post-secondary completion and how efforts can be focused to help students overcome these challenges. In 2010 and beyond, the foundation will implement this knowledge to achieve its new vision and thereby continue its extensive history of improving educational outcomes for Texas students.
This is a very exciting time, and everyone at Greater Texas Foundation looks forward to what the future holds. Please visit the strategic planning section of our site to learn more about the process, the rationale, and the results, and continue to visit this site regularly for periodic updates and changes.
The Hobby Center for the Study of Texas was created at Rice University in 2010 with support from the Honorable William P. Hobby Jr., former Lt. Governor of Texas and a Rice Alumnus. The Hobby Center for the Study of Texas is an independent and objective source for the completion of research and education projects and programs focused on major issues impacting Texas and the Nation both now and in the future. The Center seeks to advance understanding of the causes and consequences of demographic, economic, geographic, social, and environmental conditions impacting the current conditions in, and future of, Texas and other areas in the Nation. Its goal is to conduct rigorous research which results in the development of policy options for consideration by Texas decision-makers and for the people of Texas as a whole. Although they emphasize Texas, its multidisciplinary research and education activities include analyses relevant to other states as well as the Nation as a whole and its range of study topics, and its technical papers, books and articles address conceptual issues, hypotheses and analyses of scientific relevance across a broad range of social, economic and policy sciences and are relevant to a variety of contexts. In addition, the Center’s staff is involved with other entities in the provision of a variety of educational programs to elucidate both the nature of the challenges facing Texas and the Nation and the implications of alternative policy options.
William P. Hobby, Jr.
Lt. Governor William Pettus “Bill” Hobby, Jr. has done his best over a long lifetime to guide his home state, Texas, into the future. As the longest-serving lieutenant governor in the state’s history (1973-1991), a media executive, distinguished university professor and philanthropist, his contributions have been considerable.
Guided by a family tradition of selfless public service, he put his keen intellect, respect for history and sharp wit to work in all his endeavors. Already editor of a major newspaper in the state’s largest city– Houston, Hobby was elected lieutenant governor in 1972. During his 18 years in office, Texas was undergoing rapid and historically unprecedented change to its population, its culture, its politics and economy.
Hobby knew that an economically competitive state depended on a strong system of public and higher education, and made education a top priority. Meanwhile, he helped make health care more accessible. He understood how to get things done and make things work in a complex legislative environment.
When he left office in 1991, he continued to run Hobby Communications, but was soon tapped to lead the University of Houston System through a difficult transition period. He also taught at Rice University and the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin. The William P. Hobby Center for Public Service at Texas State University and the Hobby Center for Public Policy at the University of Houston bear his name.
Bill Hobby and his wife, Diana, have contributed to the Hobby Center for Performing Arts in Houston, the Hobby-Eberly Telescope at McDonald Observatory and Rice University.