M.G. AND LILLIE A. JOHNSON FOUNDATION, INC.
In December of 1958 Marshall G. and Lillie Appelt Johnson established the M.G. and Lillie A. Johnson Foundation, Inc. with the original intention being to use their estates to cause to be built a Lutheran hospital in the Texas Medical Center in Houston, Texas.
With the help of Dr. Fred Elliott, the then Executive in charge of the Texas Medical Center, contact was made with Dr. Randolph Clark, President of the M.D. Anderson Hospital in the Texas Medical Center. Dr. Clark was instrumental in contacting the University of Texas Cancer Foundation and, along with Dr. Elliott, arranged to secure an agreement in which Mr. and Mrs. Johnson would transfer their 51,860-acre ranch in Florida to the University Cancer Foundation. The University of Texas would staff and operate the hospital as a teaching hospital and the Texas Medical Center would make available a six acre tract of land adjacent to the M.D. Anderson Hospital within the Texas Medical Center. The Lutheran Central Activities Committee pledged to assist in the building of a non-denominational chapel for the hospital.
The University Cancer Foundation arranged for the sale of the donated ranch in Florida for the sum of Sixteen Million Dollars, which sum formed the seed money for the project. Through the efforts of Dr. Clark and Dr. Elliott, other Texas foundations, the Texas Legislature, and federal grants, the 300-bed teaching hospital along with a 1200 patient-per-day clinic was built and operates today. This project eventually comprised an investment approximating one hundred million dollars.
Although Mr. Johnson passed away in 1971 before any construction began, he was a party to the original agreement. Mrs. Johnson survived him by a number of years and not only saw the result of their initial contribution, but was honored for such a generous contribution numerous times prior to her death in 1987. The Johnson's contribution provided a nucleus for financing what is now known as the Lutheran Hospital Pavilion at M.D. Anderson Hospital in Houston and at that time represented the single largest contribution ever made to the University of Texas Cancer Foundation. Hanging in the Pavilion are portraits of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson and a tribute that closes with the words, "to those two distinguished Texans for their generosity and compassion for their fellow man."
The Foundation has been administered by a Board of Trustees. Through November 30, 2015, grants have been made to qualifying charities in the amount of $106,798,737.57.
Grant Request Procedures and Guidelines established by the Foundation’s Trustees provide that grants be made within in the State of Texas. Historically, grants have been made exclusively in the Texas Gulf Coast area most often referred to as the South Texas Crossroads Area. This would include Aransas, Bee, Calhoun, Colorado, Dewitt, Goliad, Gonzales, Jackson,
Karnes, Lavaca, Matagorda, Refugio, Victoria, Waller and Wharton Counties. Primary emphasis will be given to requests for medical or allied health purposes, and institutions of higher education. The Foundation's Board of Trustees presently consist of M.H. Brock, Chairman, Jim Bouligny, Vice Chairman, Jack Morrison, Secretary/Treasurer, Dick Koop, Terrell Mullins Rosemary Rust and Russell Marshall. The Foundation's Executive Vice President and Manager is Robert Halepeska. Dorothy Mikulenka is responsible for accounting and technology.
Dick Koop-Jackson County
Terrell Mullins-Lavaca County
Rosemary Rust-Wharton County
Russell Marshall-Victoria County