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Pitts Family Foundation

Program Support 2018 

In 2018 the program is funded thorugh two generous gifts by two individuals.

Dr. Jerry Pausch from Leesburg, Ohio received his doctoral degree from Purdue University in analytical chemistry and led the BF Goodrich Research measurement science group in Brecksville, Ohio for 22 years. In the span of his career, he also served on the Grace Commission, a private sector evaluation on operations of the EPA laboratories under President Ronald Reagan. He was also chairman of the Schiermeier Olentangy River Wetland Research Park Advisory Committee at Ohio State for 20 years, and now currently serves on the Everglades Wetland Research Park advisory committee at Florida Gulf Coast University in Naples, Florida. Along with his commitment to scientific research and wetland conservation, Dr. Pausch is passionate about helping students attain their academic and career goals. In addition to his support of the Minority Science Writers Fellowship, he maintains several endowments and need-based scholarships at area high schools and his undergraduate alma mater, The Ohio State University.

Mrs. Sara Lee Schupf is the namesake of the Sara Lee Baking Company, which was founded by her father, the late Charles Lupin, in 1948. Today, Mrs. Schupf’s passion for science and diversifying STEM fields fuels her remarkable engagement in and support for science and technology education. She and her family foundation have endowed academic chairs, fellowships, and scholarships, as well as centers and programs that have enriched STEM education and professional career development opportunities for countless individuals. Mrs. Schupf has also served tirelessly on numerous boards and committees, including the boards of Skidmore College, the New York Hall of Science, Emma Willard School and American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science, where she initiated the Weizmann Women and Science Award 1994-2006. Mrs. Schupf’s contribution to the Minority Science Writers Fellowship was made in honor of Dr. Shirley Malcom, AAAS’s Director of Education and Workforce Programs, for her outstanding dedication to growing diversity in STEM fields.


Program Support 2013 -2017

The Pitts Family Foundation funded the Minority Science Writers Internship (2-3 interns per year) for 5 years.  The family continues to be a strong advocate for the program.

The Chief Financial Officer of the Pitts Family Foundation stated that support for these internships comes “from two Black school teachers from Macon, Georgia, my parents.  They moved from the segregated south to southern California in 1956 and still managed to send 4 children to small private colleges on school teacher’s salaries. Dr. Raymond J. Pitts, Sr. my father, lived to be 94 and my mother, Kathleen Pitts lived to be 99. The 4 children (now ages 67 to 75) all had very good lives and did not need anything from my parents when they died. So, the Foundation was established at the wishes of my father. Due to some smart investment decisions and (just) time in the markets, what funds these teachers had, accumulated into a nice sum for investing in the lives and development of others.” 

Therefore, the Pitts Family Foundation was “established for the purpose of supporting creativity in the arts, humanities, and sciences as they relate to cultural diversity in its broadest sense.”

-Dr. Raymond J. Pitts, Sr.