SMITHVILLE, Mo. – Prior to his death in August 2019, Stanley M. Herzog reportedly gave a simple directive for establishing his legacy: Support Christian education.
The late Missouri business titan has left hundreds of millions of dollars to benefit religious education nationwide, with a focus on northwest Missouri, the new foundation formed in his honor has announced. . Overall, the money will benefit K-12 educational institutions that adopt all denominations of training and guiding young disciples, as Reverend Darrell Jones of Grace Evangelical Church explained.
“What are the missing pieces that would allow the whole tide to rise?” Jones said.
Jones was named the foundation’s first president. It is a role primarily concerned with public representation and communication that is currently focused on a nationwide “listening tour” designed to determine where the capital injections will make the most difference. The end product, Jones said, will likely involve a combination of scholarships and awards forged in partnership with the recipients.
Todd Graves will work hand in hand with Jones in Graves’ position as president of the foundation. Graves is helping oversee construction of an 18,000 square foot campus in Smithville, Missouri, which is scheduled for completion in October 2021.
According to Graves, the site, positioned by the Good Shepard Catholic Church off US Highway 169, is primarily based on practicality. Land open for future expansion is in abundance. Kansas City International Airport is just 20 minutes away. And, it anchors a national mission to the region where Herzog has invested his life and career, where his legacy is properly rooted in devotion to God. Graves made that commitment to his friend.
“Stanley Herzog was from Northwestern Missouri,” Graves said. “He loved Northwest Missouri, and (the foundation) will definitely have a focus there.”
In addition to Graves and Jones, John Elliot has been appointed vice president of the foundation and Kristen Ansley has been appointed secretary, as well as treasurer. Recruitment is underway for a day-to-day manager of the foundation’s assets, with the title of general manager.
As quoted in a press release, Laurel Herzog-Woods and Jacob Herzog said they were honored to know that their father’s legacy will be continued with “the work of this life changing and community impacting foundation”.
“Our father believed in the fundamental importance of a Christian education in the lives of young people,” the Herzogs said. “An education that instills important values such as commitment to God, family and community.