What's Happening at the Symphony

Highlighting Our Donors: THE GILDRED FAMILY

The ongoing success of THE FUTURE IS HEAR campaign is thrilling to all of us at the San Diego Symphony. To date we have raised $120M toward our $125M goal. We are grateful for the generosity of all who have given at every level. It is a joy to be able to share stories from some of the campaign donors and learn about why they have decided to support this important initiative.

The San Diego Symphony is honored to have supporters who have continued their family’s legacy of giving. The Symphony has been providing music for San Diego for over 100 years, and matching that timeline of contribution is the Gildred family.

Members of the Gildred family sat down with us to share why they are giving to The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park and carrying on their family legacy.

A Shining Example

When the Gildred family recently made a generous gift of $1M to the San Diego Symphony to build The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park, their gift carried a full circle quality that resonated back nearly 100 years. It was in 1927 that a young Philip Gildred, Sr. dreamed up, funded and built San Diego’s famous Fox Theater, now Copley Symphony Hall.

Since that time, two successive generations have carried forward the family’s successful commercial real estate business; equally important, the Gildred family has continued to give of their time, leadership and resources to support and grow our city’s major cultural and civic institutions such as Sharp HealthCare, Balboa Park, the San Diego Museum of Art, the San Diego Zoo, the San Diego History Center and many, many more.

The generous gift to the Symphony was made by Elizabeth Gildred, Tom Gildred, Julie Gildred Connolly, Lew Gildred and Anne Gildred Simmons to honor their fathers George Gildred and Philip Gildred, Jr. who are the sons of Philip Gildred, Sr.

“Like Symphony Hall, The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park is a landmark, and we saw the opportunity to add to the permanent legacy in San Diego that our grandfather began,” said Lew Gildred. “Looking across the bay and seeing the Shell, I knew it was the right decision to play a large role in the culture and future of our city.”

Tom Gildred summed up the significance of The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park, saying: “It’s a pivotal point in the Orchestra’s history. In the past it has been difficult to get significant things done in San Diego, and I think it’s important and timely for our community to know that if we pull together, we can make meaningful things happen in our city. A shining example of that is the spectacular new Rady Shell at Jacobs Park.”

THE FUTURE IS HEAR is a $125 million campaign supporting the San Diego Symphony and its wide range of artistic and community programing. With a mission to change lives through music and a steadfast belief that music belongs to all of us, the Symphony is committed to continually engaging, supporting and learning from its diverse community. Gifts at every level make an impact, and we are more that 96% of the way to a goal which will enable us to further enhance our programs and facilities for the enjoyment and benefit of all. To make your mark, e-mail campaign@sandiegosymphony.org or follow this link to learn more about the campaign, about the various giving opportunities, and about how you can help tell the world that THE FUTURE IS HEAR at the San Diego Symphony!

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