The Bill and Judy Garrett Civic Leadership Award was accepted by Lisa Wilson, niece of the Rice Family Foundation’s creator, Morgan Rice, and her daughter Jessica, also a foundation board member. Photo Courtesy Grossmont & Cuyamaca Community College District.
A foundation that has provided more than $1 million in donations to Grossmont
and Cuyamaca colleges has been honored with the second annual Bill and Judy Garrett Civic
The award was presented Thursday night to the Rice Family Foundation at a dinner honoring donors to the Foundation for Grossmont & Cuyamaca Colleges.
“The Rice Family Foundation’s support of our colleges embodies the spirit of the Bill and Judy Garrett Civic Leadership Award, which recognizes an individual or group that leads with integrity and supports student success,” said Sally Cox, chief executive officer of the district foundation.
The award was accepted by Lisa Wilson, niece of the Rice Family Foundation’s creator, Morgan Rice, and her daughter Jessica, also a foundation board member. Wilson said her uncle, who died in 2004, believed in the transforming power of education.
“We love both of these colleges,” Wilson said. “They are the basis of our community. We’re proud of everything that Grossmont and Cuyamaca colleges have done.”
The Rice Family Foundation was created in 1993 by Morgan Rice, an El Centro native who made his fortune by investing in San Diego real estate, particularly on Mount Miguel near Spring Valley.
The emphasis of funding and grants from the foundation is on education, particularly programs that benefit the economically disadvantaged in San Diego County. Some beneficiaries of the foundation’s largesse include Balboa Park museums, the San Diego Zoo, K-12 educational programs, literacy programs, and programs related to music and the arts.
Since the early 2000s, the Grossmont College Theatre Arts Department has also been a beneficiary of the Rice Family Foundation. A foundation board member learned of the college’s touring program that presents performing arts based on children’s literature to East County elementary school children. The Rice Family Foundation provided funding to expand the touring show and include more shows at more schools. It now reaches about 16 East County schools, benefitting more than 8,000 children.
For more information about the Foundation for Grossmont & Cuyamaca Colleges, go to https://foundation.gcccd.edu/ .
–Grossmont & Cuyamaca Community College District
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