When Judy McCracken moved to Toledo with her husband, Steve, and four young children, she had no idea how her life was about to change.
“Steve had been with DuPont for 30 years, and we’d moved a lot,” she recalled, noting that relocation had been a way of life for them. “We were considering moves to Texas and Kansas, but ended up in Toledo after Steve accepted the CEO position with Owens-Illinois. My mother’s uncle lived in Ottawa Hills, and I knew it was a great place to raise a family. So when we came here, that’s where we decided to build our dream home together.”
But just three short years later, a severe illness took Steve’s life. To provide a lasting legacy for Steve, Judy established a donor advised fund at the Foundation in his name for memorial contributions. “Frank Jacobs, a TCF board member, was our estate attorney. He introduced me to TCF and how easy it is to manage charitable giving through the Foundation. Once the fund was established, it just made sense to continue it.”
As she put down roots in Toledo and raised her young family, Judy recognized she had advantages that many other women and children in her situation did not. “I’ve been able as a single mother to provide for my family and raise them in a safe environment, and I know not everyone is so fortunate,” she said, “so women, family, education and the environment are all causes I am passionate about.”
"Frank Jacobs, a TCF board member, was our estate attorney. He introduced me to TCF and how easy it is to manage charitable giving through the Foundation. Once the fund was established, it just made sense to continue it."- JUDY MCCRACKEN
Judy also supports the arts because of the value it has for children. “You HAVE to have the arts in your community. When we first came to Toledo, I was impressed at how many opportunities in the arts there are in Toledo for children from all walks of life – and high-quality opportunities, too. My children have benefitted from being introduced to these forms of expression, and I want others to benefit as well.”
Judy also values the local impact her TCF fund provides. “It is important to know that when we’re giving, the money stays in the community,” she said, recalling the assistance TCF provides in vetting and presenting local causes worth supporting. “You need to give back where you live – you want to see your community thriving.”