Fueled by MacKenzie Scott gift, Easterseals Redwood embarks on most ambitious campaign in its history

Fueled by MacKenzie Scott gift, Easterseals Redwood embarks on most ambitious campaign in its history

Easterseals Redwood, which provides services and programs for people with disabilities, veterans and those facing economic disadvantages, exclusively shared details of Power of Work, Power of Purpose, with the Business Courier ahead of its official debut April 19.

The $26 million campaign will fund an expansion and renovation at its headquarters campus, located at 2901 Gilbert Ave.; create an endowment; and expand its programs and services.

Easterseals, in its packaging and fulfillment center, assembles test kits for the pharma sector, among other offerings, like logistics and poly-bagging. Those businesses, considered social enterprises, generate nearly $4 million in revenue each year.

Other plans include:

– A buildout of a roughly 10,000-square-foot military and veterans services center. Green said the center, a first for the region, would aim to relieve “navigation frustration” for vets when it comes to finding and signing up for services. Easterseals is the No. 1 employment provider for veterans in the region.

– An expansion of its disabilities services portfolio, which will include enhanced experiential learning programs and new programs targeting neurodiverse individuals and transition-aged youth, among other updates.

– $2 million to create an endowment, or permanent funds that will generate revenue to provide annual support.

Scott’s donation – the largest in Easterseals’ history – had a ripple effect. Largely, it gave other donors the confidence to also contribute to the nonprofit, said Danielle Gentry-Barth, who serves as vice president of agency advancement and veteran services at Easterseals.

Scott heavily researched her recipients. Per Forbes, Scott has given away $14.4 billion since 2019, including more than $52 million to Cincinnati groups.

Five other donors, besides Scott, have pledged gifts valued at $1 million or more, including the Farmer Family Foundation, the Carol Ann and Ralph V. Haile Jr. Foundation and PLK Communities’ Peter Klekamp and wife Laura Klekamp.

The public launch of Power of Work, Power of Purpose will take place today, Wednesday, April 19, at the Gilbert Avenue campus starting at 11 a.m.

The event will include a commemorative beam signing ceremony, helmed by Kroger CEO Rodney McMullen, who is serving as the campaign executive chair (Kroger has hired more people Easterseals has served than any other employer in the city, Green said). Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval also are expected to be in attendance.


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