Pasadena Community Foundation Funds

Thomas Harris Family Foundation

“We have been blessed in life and it’s a good feeling to share those blessings with others.” Tom started a business in Pasadena, Optical Research Associates, specializing in engineering services and software for optics.  When he retired the firm had grown from 1 to 93 employees.  Through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan the owners sold the company to the employees over time to allow them to share in the profits of what they had helped to build.  Tom and his wife Marcie also started a private foundation as a way to give back to the community in which they had raised their family and built their business. In 2008, they terminated their private foundation and transferred the assets to the Pasadena Community Foundation to create a donor advised endowment fund.  Along with their two sons, Tom and Richard, they will continue to support Pasadena-area non-profits through grants from the Thomas Harris Family Fund at PCF.  “We get all the benefits of having the family come together to select worthy causes with none of the administrative duties required by a private foundation,” says Tom.

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