Delores Barr Weaver donates $50 million to Community Foundation

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  • | 12:00 p.m. November 29, 2012
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Former Jacksonville Jaguars owner Delores Barr Weaver has given $50 million to The Community Foundation in Jacksonville to establish the organization's largest single fund.

The gift is the largest in the foundation's 48-year history and creates the Delores Barr Weaver Fund at The Community Foundation in Jacksonville.

Weaver said she will personally advise the fund and stressed it will not accept unsolicited proposals.

Founded in 1964, the Community Foundation in Jacksonville claims to be the oldest community foundation in Florida, and serves Jacksonville and Northeast Florida. It has 360 individual funds, holds more than $141 million in assets and has made more than $166 million in grants.

"Through this fund I expect to step out of the box to make grants in areas of need for which there is not much support of and support areas that are uncomfortable for others," said Weaver.

Wayne and Delores Weaver along with other Jaguars partners sold the team early this year for a reported $770 million to Illinois businessman Shad Khan.

After the Jaguars franchise was awarded in 1993, Delores Weaver created the Jacksonville Jaguars Foundation in 1994 and served as its chair and CEO. It made grants before the Jaguars took the field in 1995.

The new fund already has awarded a $6.6 million grant, to be paid over three years, to establish the Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center.

The center will provide research, training, education and advocacy in support of the needs of girls in the juvenile justice system. It will be led by Lawanda Ravoira and housed at 1028 Park St. in the Sun Ray Cinema building.

The center will open Jan. 2.

During the announcement Wednesday, Weaver discussed another area the fund could support.

"Today, I do not know where this journey will lead me. However, the epidemic is great and the military already has my attention," she said.

She referenced a letter sent to U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta regarding how the "prevalence of rape and sexual assault is undermining (military) readiness."

"I must ask where is the concern of the victims and those that worry every day that they could be next," said Weaver.

She said she also plans to address through the fund the issues of mental health and suicide of returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan.


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