On September 29, 1994, Articles of Incorporation were filed in the Office of the Florida Secretary of State and the Old Dillard Foundation became a legal entity. When the first annual report was filed, the officers were Maryann Bacon, President; Gale Butler, Vice President; and Marie-Carol Desrosiers, Treasurer. The registered agent was Charles Cherry. The Principal place of business was 121 NW 6th Ave, Fort Lauderdale, 33311. Three years later the organization gained the 501 C3 status as a not for profit organization recognized by the IRS. The organization address moved to the Old Dillard Museum in 1998.
The Old Dillard Foundation was established to support the Old Dillard Museum, originally called “The Colored School” through programming, fundraising and advocacy. The Old Dillard Museum, a historical landmark and education center operated by Broward County Public Schools, is a part of a century of education and culture in Fort Lauderdale’s African American community. The Old Dillard Museum, which is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was built on land purchased from Fort Lauderdale pioneers Frank and Ivy Stranahan. The Old Dillard School was the city’s first school for African American students established in 1907. It is named for Dr. James Hardy Dillard, a prominent philanthropist and educator.
Although the officers and directors have changed, the mission has not waivered. The Mission is to facilitate collaborative relationships and actions that allow and assure sustainable resources to support successful museum programs and community projects that celebrate the pride, history, and culture of people of African Diaspora communities.
During the last 25 years, The Old Dillard Foundation has raised over $500,000 to support and promote programming that highlighted the contributions of the African Diaspora in Broward County.
The Foundation has also had a longstanding and supportive relationship with Dillard High School and the Dillard Center for the Arts. Each year, ODF collaborates with DCA to fund the artists for the Cannonball Jazz Series and provides funds to sup-port the jazz students for their annual trips to the Essentially Ellington Competition. It is for this reason that the ODF Board of Directors has chosen to honor 3 Dillard High School Legends, Mr. Christopher Dorsey, Coach Marcia Pinder, and Coach Darryl Burrows at its 25th Anniversary celebration on Friday November 1, 2019. Mrs. Patricia West, President stated “These three individuals have continually brought national recognition and pride to our community. They each deserve much more than we can ever repay.”
The anniversary celebration will take place on Friday, November 1, 2019 at the Tower Club-Ft Lauderdale. Tickets are still on sale at www.old-dillard-foundation-anniversary.eventbrite
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