Each year, Ingram’s Magazine recognizes a handful of companies in the Kansas City region who represent an outstanding example of what it means to be a good corporate citizen. The organizations – dubbed “Corporate Champions” – promote the giving of time and talents not just from the administrative ranks, but throughout their companies. This year, Ingram’s recognized six organizations for this top honor, and Ball’s Food Stores was among the organizations selected. Ball’s Food Stores includes Hen House, Price Chopper, Payless Discount Stores and Tippin’s Gourmet Pies. The Ball family members are among the founders of what is today KVC Health Systems and they remain closely involved to this day.
In 1970, JoAnn Ball was involved in the Junior League and co-founded Wyandotte House in Kansas City, Kan. – a home for at-risk boys – which is now KVC Health Systems. (Read more about KVC’s history.) At that time, she and her husband, Fred, were also growing the family grocery business. To repay the salesmen who called on their stores, the Balls began a tradition of a “thank you” picnic in their backyard. That original picnic grew into the Ball’s Charity Golf Classic. KVC has been the beneficiary of this wonderful event.
The Balls have continually contributed their leadership and support from the early years — an expansive commitment across three generations. They have provided Board guidance, campaign leadership, personal gift giving and support of every event and initiative of KVC. Fred and JoAnn each served many years on KVC’s Board of Directors, have chaired multiple capital fundraising campaigns and have been instrumental in introducing new friends and funding to KVC, including personal magnanimous contributions to each of KVC’s capital campaigns.
Fred and JoAnn taught their children the importance of giving back to their community, and KVC is extremely honored that David, Debbie and Diane are continuing their parents’ tradition. To cite only a few examples, David Ball is currently co-chair of the Board along with recently-retired President/CEO Wayne Sims. Fred and JoAnn’s daughter, Diane Wilkerson, has served as President of the KVC General Board and helped initiate the KVC Gala annual fundraiser. Another daughter, Debbie Simpson, has also been an active supporter of KVC events throughout the years. Fred and JoAnn’s grandchildren are now continuing their family’s service. This third generation, representing children helping children, is a true testament to this great family legacy.
Congratulations Ball’s Food Stores! KVC thanks you for your enormous support and involvement throughout the years!
Click here to read about all of the Corporate Champions recognized by Ingram’s this year.
In the Corporate Champion’s issue, Ingram’s also ranked KVC Health Systems as the #2 nonprofit organization in the greater Kansas City area. KVC is a national leader in providing innovative, effective and compassionate care. Through in-home family therapy, foster care, adoption, outpatient behavioral healthcare, youth substance abuse and psychiatric hospitals, KVC touches the lives of nearly 60,000 children and families each year. Learn more in KVC’s 2015 Annual Report.