Zoo Announces Legacy Grant

from Christel DeHaan Foundation

NOVEMBER 9, 2023 – The Indianapolis Zoo is the recipient of a legacy grant from the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation in the amount of $2,748,000. Of the grant, $2 million is designated for the Christel DeHaan Fund of the Indianapolis Prize Endowment and $748,000 is designated for conservation efforts through the Zoo’s Christel DeHaan Conservation Fund.

“This legacy gift boosts our capacity for making a difference, both in our community and for the future of our world. The steadfast support of Christel and the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation has made our impact on conservation stronger and more vibrant for generations,” said Dr. Robert Shumaker, Indianapolis Zoo President and CEO.

The gift to the Indianapolis Prize Endowment ensures a biennial $50,000 monetary award for each of the five Indianapolis Prize Finalists in perpetuity. Going forward, the five Finalists will now be known as the Indianapolis Prize DeHaan Finalists.

The Christel DeHaan Conservation Fund will align with the Zoo’s mission of protecting nature and inspiring people to care for our world. The Indianapolis Zoo is a respected wildlife conservation partner, using exhibits, education programs and events to connect visitors to nature. In addition, the Zoo is a leader in global conservation efforts, including its biennial Indianapolis Prize, annual Conservation Grant Program and Global Center for Species Survival.

Christel DeHaan and the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation have been important supporters of the Indianapolis Zoo since 1997, making significant contributions to animal conservation and toward the success of the Indianapolis Prize award program.

Christel DeHaan will be remembered for providing educational opportunities to children in Indianapolis and around the globe and for strengthening arts and cultural institutions in Indianapolis and her generous support of the Indianapolis Zoo. Christel’s philosophy of life was, “to care, to share, to make a difference,” and nothing could summarize her life more clearly.