John Taylor spent his career years in cities coast to coast. Yet, he never forgot his roots in rural Indiana, where he was raised by civic-minded parents in a community that he still supports. His parents were educators and committed to charity work and leadership. “Both were role models and felt giving back to our country, whether through the military or charity, is important,” he said. He saw how one role model produced another. John hopes his example will encourage others to create an endowment for more meaningful causes.
It’s no wonder his thoughts went to philanthropy after he inherited and sold part of the family farm in Browns Valley, Indiana. With both of his children grown and successful, it was time to return the favor for a life well-lived.
I have always been proud of the things I enjoyed – good health, family, jobs. It was time to give back. John Taylor
Oldsmar Cares came to mind after John’s longtime girlfriend Pat Lamphear introduced him to David Wallace, founder of Oldsmar Cares. Asked to serve on the advisory board, John was compelled to do more. “Oldsmar Cares did not have an endowment,” he said. “It pretty much operates hand-to-mouth.” In search of a responsible steward of the fund, he chose PCF.
Ironically, it was the same hand-to-mouth existence of those served by Oldsmar Cares that motivated his desire to start the endowment fund. He wants to break the cycle of poverty “that prevents so many from achieving the life they want,” he said. “I see two things declining in this country − the family unit and education. Not enough people are getting the right kind of education to do for themselves and not depend on the government.”
He sees this condition transferred from generation to generation. “Children grow up in a one-parent home, get fed at school and Oldsmar Cares,” he said. Because the family is strapped to make ends meet, John feels, “They are not getting the education to move forward.”
John’s generosity extends to other causes in the Bay Area, like Salvation Army, Metropolitan Ministries, and Tampa Theater. He has also endowed the Montgomery County Community Foundation in Indiana to support the community where he was raised. Behind each of John’s gifts is his desire to make every penny count. “I choose charities where the most money goes directly to the people they serve,” he said.
Modeling His Parents, He Sets an Example for Others
John Taylor’s 80 years read like an adventure novel. The retired sales and marketing executive has been a recreational pilot, city councilman, civic leader, philanthropist, consultant, and world traveler. His map is filled with pushpins on every city, county, and country he has worked in or visited.
His life, however, is defined less by the places he has been and more by the communities he has served. He has volunteered, advised, guided, raised funds, and helped promote civic organizations and nonprofits in Tampa Bay, his native Montgomery County, Indiana, and points beyond. Lately, he adds charitable advocacy to his life story.
I want to be a role model to show others that they can be charitable in their lifetime rather than after they die. John Taylor
The accrued interest from the $100,000 endowment, called Oldsmar Cares John T. Taylor Endowment Fund, is invested and managed by PCF to generate income to support Oldsmar Cares’ mission. It is already earning money that is distributed to Oldsmar Care quarterly. Additionally, John made provisions in his will for a second contribution that more than doubles the fund’s size.