The Sunderland Foundation was established in 1945 by Lester T. Sunderland, who served as president of the Ash Grove Cement Company for 33 years as a respected leader in his industry. Prior to joining Ash Grove in 1909, Lester was a principal and founder of the Sunderland Brothers Company. The Sunderland Brothers Company was a leading distributor of coal, lime, cement and other building materials headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska. The company was an early and long standing customer of the Ash Grove Lime and Portland Cement Company.
After more than seven decades, the Foundation continues to be led by Lester T.'s descendants . It has focused on supporting brick and mortar projects, awarding grants to nonprofits in the Kansas City region and other areas where the Ash Grove Cement Company traditionally does business.
Assets of the Sunderland Foundation have been contributed by Lester T Sunderland and his two sons, Paul Sunderland and Allen B. Sunderland. These assets were comprised primarily of shareholdings of the Ash Grove Cement Company. Ash Grove was led by four generations of the Sunderland family from 1909 to 2018. The dedicated and talented employees of Ash Grove built the company over several generations into the fifth largest manufacturer of portland cement in the United States at the time Ash Grove was acquired by CRH plc of Dublin, Ireland in 2018.
For more information on the Ash Grove Cement Company visit www.ashgrove.com/about
The Sunderland Foundation's mission is to improve quality of life through reinvesting in the communities where the Ash Grove Cement Company has historically operated.
The Foundation makes grants annually to publicly-supported charitable organizations with tax exempt status under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.
Grants for planning, design, building construction, renovation, repairs and restoration of facilities are considered. Areas of interest include higher education, youth serving agencies, health facilities, community buildings, museums, civic projects, and energy efficient affordable housing projects sponsored by qualified tax-exempt organizations.