Leaving a Legacy: Inspiring the Future by Preserving the Past

by Robin Elmerick
Director of Effective Philanthropy

When Stan began thinking about his estate planning needs and opened a fund with CICF in 1997, he may not have realized the remarkable impact his generosity would have both during and after his lifetime. What he did know was that he had vowed to honor his parents and would soon begin the journey of doing just that.

Stan Cox

Stan Cox

Standiford “Stan” Cox, who passed away in February 2019, joined Eli Lilly and Co. in 1957 as its first Black chemist and was a generous advocate for the preservation of African American heritage sites. During his lifetime, he established two funds with the CICF, one in his name and one to honor his parents. Both funds are used to support organizations working to preserve significant African American landmarks in Indiana.

The Standiford H. Cox Fund supports the restoration, preservation, operation and ongoing maintenance of African American historic sites in Indiana. The Dovie Stewart Cox & Chester A. Cox Sr. Memorial Fund provides support for Lost Creek Community Grove at the Lost Creek Settlement near Terre Haute. The area is the birthplace of his mother and grandparents and was, and still is, a small community of African American families with deep roots in the region as one of the state’s earliest settlements of free people of color.

CICF manages the funds in partnership with the Indiana Landmarks’ African American Landmarks Committee who serves as a preservation advisor to both funds, recommending projects. Funding opportunities are thoroughly assessed based on criteria including architectural and historical significance, opportunities for redevelopment, threat of demolition and significance to Indiana’s African American heritage. In 2020, the fund awarded $135,000 to 15 projects throughout the state.

“Stan Cox has left an incredible legacy to the people of Indiana,” Mark Dollase, vice president of preservation services at Indiana Landmarks said. “We are honored to work with Central Indiana Community Foundation in a partnership that will aid in the restoration of important African American landmarks for years to come.”

Due to his remarkable generosity during his lifetime, and an estate gift realized upon his passing, Stan’s legacy will be uplifted and preserved through the continued preservation of African American landmarks for years to come.

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