LOFT History and Purpose
In an effort to improve quality of life for all residents of Oxford and Lafayette County, former Oxford Mayor Richard Howorth and community leaders Claiborne Barksdale and Don Fruge, Sr. partnered with the CREATE Foundation to establish an endowment for Oxford and Lafayette County.
Founded in 2002, The Lafayette Oxford Foundation for Tomorrow (LOFT) is our local community foundation through which individuals, families, organizations and corporations invest in the well-being of the community by supporting the arts and cultural, civic, educational, health and human services, and municipal activities that improve the quality of life for all Lafayette County and Oxford residents. LOFT is a non-profit, charitable organization operating as an affiliate of CREATE Foundation (Tupelo, Mississippi).
How Does Our Community Foundation Work?
The LOFT Endowment is a “savings” account that belongs to residents of Oxford and Lafayette County in perpetuity. The LOFT Board of Directors maintains local decision-making regarding how funds are raised, and to whom it makes awards through its annual grant cycle. Our board is comprised of local business and community leaders who work diligently to raise money for our endowment, and to carefully oversee its grant application and selection process for awarding funds to deserving non-profit, charitable organizations across Oxford and Lafayette County.
Recognized as a model of regional stewardship and initiative, LOFT was recently awarded the 2013 James Hugh Ray Affiliate Award from the CREATE Foundation. Within CREATE’s 17-county Northeast Mississippi region, LOFT was found to exemplify the mission of CREATE and its affiliates to “raise the level” of quality of life for Northeast Mississippians.