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$12.5 million gift to Interfaith America from Jerre and Mary Joy Stead
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$12.5 million gift to Interfaith America from Jerre and Mary Joy Stead

Interfaith America, the nation’s premier interfaith organization, today announced a $12.5 million gift from the Stead Family Foundation.

“This generous gift from the Stead Family Foundation is transformative for Interfaith America, as it provides a solid foundation for our continued growth and innovation efforts,” said Eboo Patel, Founder and President of Interfaith America. “We just celebrated our 20th-anniversary last year, and we are grateful to the Stead family for their confidence in our ability to fulfill our mission, and for making an investment that will sustain our work and allow us to scale it to increase our impact.”

The commitment from the Stead Family Foundation, which will be fulfilled over the next 10 years, has the potential to be extended for an additional five years, which at $18.75 million would be the largest single gift ever received by Interfaith America. This pledge builds upon multiple generous investments the organization has received from Einhorn Collaborative (formerly known as Einhorn Family Charitable Trust) since 2015, as well as a $6 million grant from MacKenzie Scott in 2020.

“We are very pleased and excited to support the important work of Interfaith America as they unlock the potential of America’s religious diversity to heal division and create positive ways to bring people together – something that is so desperately needed today,” said Jerre and Mary Joy Stead. “We hope this gift will inspire others to join us and Interfaith America as their work expands into new communities and sectors where they can make a difference.”

The Stead Family Foundation focuses on creating great leaders for faith, science, business, and education. Their major gifts include $25 million to the University of Iowa and $5 million to Banner Health, and they endowed the Stead Center for Ethics and Values at the Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois.

Founded in 2002, Interfaith America (IA) is the nation’s premier interfaith organization with a mission to inspire, equip, and connect leaders and institutions to unlock the potential of America’s religious diversity. Utilizing a research-backed approach, IA provides expert consultation, training, curricula, and resources to positively engage religious diversity, and works in a variety of civic spaces, including higher education, healthcare, workplaces, and pro-democracy efforts.

Jerre Stead is Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Clarivate Analytics. Jerre served as CEO of Churchill Capital Corp until its merger with Clarivate in May 2019. Jerre has had a long and very successful career as a public company CEO and Clarivate is the tenth public company in which he has served as CEO and/or Chairman.

Over the last two decades, he has created a world leader and one of the fastest-growing companies in the information services sector. Prior to leading Clarivate, he served as Chairman and CEO at IHS Markit, Ltd. and previously as Executive Chairman and CEO at IHS Inc. The other highly successful technology and information companies he has led include Honeywell-Phillips Medical Electronics, Square D, AT&T Global Business Communications Systems, AT&T Global Information Solutions (NCR Corporation), NCR Japan, Legent Corporation, and Ingram Micro.

In addition, Jerre has served on 37 corporate boards during his career and received numerous accolades for his work. He was elected one of six worldwide outstanding directors by the FT, and he received the Kenneth B. West Lifetime Achievement Award in July 2017 from the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) in recognition of his service on corporate and philanthropic boards.

A graduate of the University of Iowa and of the Harvard University Advanced Management Program in Switzerland, Jerre earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He is chairman of the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute as well as chairman of the board of Garret Evangelical Seminary and he sits on the boards of the American Writers Museum and Guideposts.

Jerre and Mary Joy are natives of Maquoketa, Iowa and were married in 1961. While raising the couple’s two sons, Mary Joy completed an A.S. degree in medical technology and has devoted her life to her family and to charitable and volunteer activities on behalf of a wide array of causes, including K-12 education, elderly services and church-based initiatives. Currently she is a board member of Operation QT in Phoenix and OWL in Denver for after school programs for disadvantaged children.

She was named vice chair of the National Steering Committee for the Good. Better. Best. Iowa Campaign, which raised more than $1 billion to benefit people and programs throughout The University of Iowa. She currently serves on their Board of Directors and received a “Distinguished Friend of the University” award from their alumni association in 2008. She is a member of PEO, a private pilot and Cirrus owner.

The Steads are members of Pinnacle Presbyterian Church in Scottsdale and she is a board member of the Pinnacle Theological Center. The couple resides in Scottsdale, Arizona, and Denver, Colorado. They have two sons and seven grandchildren.

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