by Natasha Khairullah
The Stellar Group President and CEO Ron Foster realized not too long ago that his company was so active in the community that it needed an official community foundation.
Friday afternoon, Foster and the rest of the company will celebrate the formation of The Stellar Foundation.
According to Foster, the Foundation will formalize the group’s community support program and make a substantial difference in the lives of individuals and groups as well as civic and community service programs in need of assistance.
“Stellar’s growth as a company has provided many people great opportunities,” said Foster, “and our fortunate direction has also made us realize that if we were to apply a similar strategic business focus on Stellar’s philanthropic and charitable activities, then the impact of our efforts would be far greater than imagined.”
The Foundation kickoff is at The Stellar Group’s headquarters in Mandarin. One of the guests at the event will be 13-year-old John Searcy, a Dreams Come True recipient, whose dream trip was to attend the Macy’s thanksgiving Day Parade in New York with his family. His dream was sponsored by the Foundation.
“His favorite float was Bart Simpson, so we’re having a 3-D Bart Simpson cake made for him,” said Ali Korman, director of community relations for The Stellar Group.
Employees who donate to the Donna Hicken Foundation will be matched 100 percent by The Stellar Foundation, said Korman.
“This is really for the employees and the community to get involved,” she said. “It’s to let the community and non-profits know we’re around and that we care. We want to get involved in any way we can to help Jacksonville.”
Foster said the Group’s first goal of establishing and centralizing Stellar’s charitable efforts is well on its way, but there is still much work to be done.
“In the first full year of operation, we hope the Stellar Foundation successfully identifies, partners with and positively impacts groups in dire need of assistance,” he said.
“It is also a high priority to listen to our staff, find out who they support and ensure that their interests become part of the Stellar Foundation’s programs.”
The Stellar Group is a commercial contracting company that was started in 1985 in Jacksonville. Some of their services include design, engineering, construction and general contracting and construction management projects – nationally and internationally as well as locally.
They have previously donated funds to numerous organizations, including Volunteer Jacksonville, the American Heart and American Lung Associations and the Jacksonville Zoo.