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Soap Box Derby Receives Grant From Akron Community Foundation


The International Soap Box Derby (ISBD) has received a $20,000-grant from the Roush Memorial Fund of Akron Community Foundation and a $5,000-grant from the John A. McAlonan Fund of Akron Community Foundation to be used for general operating support.

These funds will help enhance activities for racers, their families and spectators visiting Akron for the FirstEnergy All-American Soap Box Derby in July, help expand the Soap Box Derby’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education programs and grow participation in Soap Box Derby programs around the country.

“Under new leadership and increased sponsorship, the Soap Box Derby is poised to impact more youth, grow the brand and continue to bring attention to Akron,” said Jody Miller Konstand, Akron Community Foundation board and community investment committee member. “We’re excited to fund this community treasure and see its continued growth.”

“We are thankful for the work the Akron Community Foundation does in the community and the support of both the Roush Memorial Fund and the John A. McAlonan Fund. We appreciate their continued support as we work to carry out our mission in Summit County,” said Mark Gerberich, president and chief executive officer of the Soap Box Derby.  “Last year we were able to give back $120,000 to the community in racing and education programs and this grant will continue to support that cause in 2020.”

The ISBD provides opportunities for racing and STEM education with the Summit County Schools and Akron Public Schools, including the I Promise School, Salvation Army, South Street Ministries, Launch Kenmore, Akron Urban League, Urban Vision, Emmanuel Christian Academy, South Akron Youth Mentorship, Akron Rotary Camp, YMCA, Boys and Girls Clubs, and other organizations in Akron. This grant will help further the ISBD’s mission by providing meaningful experiences through fair and honest racing competitions, STEM curriculums, and other community-focused activities.