Cheryl Cox Believes Many Hands Make Community Work

Cheryl Cox' collective giving approach
As former Mayor of Chula Vista, Cheryl Cox (left) spent years working alongside business and community leaders to support the needs of the diverse community.

Cheryl Cox is no stranger to collective giving.

As former Mayor of Chula Vista, she spent years working alongside business and community leaders to support the needs of the diverse community.

“When I was elected mayor in 2006, I spent the first five years in budget cuts,” recalled Cox. “We faced major financial limitations that forced us to work creatively and collaboratively.”

Cox learned quickly that local leaders can do their jobs more effectively and productively by involving more people.

From throwing celebrations for the Little League Champions in 2009 and 2013, to raising money to bring necessary resources to the city’s Nature Center (now the Living Coast Discovery Center) amid budget cuts, Cox’s collaborative approach and commitment to Chula Vista embodies the value of collective giving.

Philanthropy and Purpose

Today, the former mayor is using the same community-building skills in the philanthropic world to support Chula Vista’s animal care facility.

Cox’s passion for supporting animals grew while in office.

“Back in 2007, during the devastating wildfires, I noticed that the local animal shelter was hard-pressed to handle all the animals being rescued and those that were relinquished by owners,” remembered Cox. “At the time, all we could afford to do was direct staff to secure the animals.”

“Now, thanks to the Friends of Chula Vista Animal Care Facility Fund at The San Diego Foundation, we are better able to support a variety of critters and creatures, from ducks and bunnies to cats and dogs,” continued Cox.

Cox believes that the fund will bring attention to this important cause and create an avenue for people with a similar passion for animals who want to give back.

“No one can do great things on an island,” Cox shared as she talked about the future of the animal shelter. “What I hope is that this fund provides an opportunity for those who like animals to contribute and play a role in the community process.”

Collective Giving

Just as Cox and other donors are doing with the Animal Care Facility, collective giving is helping Chula Vista grow into a city of the future.

In 2008, Cox led the effort to establish the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation, a group of like-minded individuals and businesses who want to make a difference for the community of Chula Vista through philanthropy. The organization has since grown to more than 100 members and has granted more than $150,000 to organizations in the community.

Its community endowment fund has swelled to over $300,000 and will support grantmaking and nonprofit organizations serving the Chula Vista community in perpetuity.

If you are interested in giving back to your community to help improve the quality of life, join the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation or one of the other eight Regional Affiliate organizations at The San Diego Foundation.

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