Annual Fund 2016-2017

There’s Nothing “New” about Their Commitment to GSL!

Suzanne and Erick New are all about GSL. Their two sons Garner (6th grade) and Gregory (4th grade) have kept these Midtowners actively involved at the school for nearly a decade. In fact, if you have attended an Anchor Auction in recent years, then you’ve seen the creative contributions of Erick, co-owner and director of operations of Garden District, a business that takes him all over the world. Suzanne, an alumna of Ole Miss with a graduate degree from the University of Memphis, keeps busy using at least two different skill sets: she teaches English as a Second Language (ESL) for Shelby County Schools, and she is also a stylist at Stella & Dot, jewelry and accessories. In addition to these interests, both Suzanne and Erick are fully engaged members of Grace-St. Luke’s Episcopal Church.

What’s not-so-new about the New family is their tireless commitment to GSL and the Annual Fund. Despite their diverse and busy schedules, they have always generously and enthusiastically found time to show their support of the school. Now they are stepping up to the plate again to lead the GSL community through another important fundraising campaign. They know first-hand that anyone - and everyone - can Make a Difference in the strength and success of GSL. Thank you, Suzanne & Erick - for all you do!

The Goal for the 2016-2017 Annual Fund is $250,000.
Annual Fund 101 – Know the Facts

  • The Annual Fund is the single, largest fundraiser of the school year. (The Parents’ Association’s Anchor Auction is the second-largest money maker.)
  • The Annual Fund is a supplemental source of income for the school. As with virtually all independent schools, tuition covers about 80% of GSL’s operating budget. The Annual Fund makes up the difference (roughly $2,500 per student).
  • GSL is a not-for-profit business. Our mission is education. By design, high-quality schools are labor-intensive and people-oriented. Where a for-profit company might consolidate employee duties and resources to save money, combining classrooms and reducing staff would not benefit our students. Teachers are our most important asset, yet most of them earn less than their public school peers. They choose to work at GSL because they value its commitment to children. The majority of your donations help us to recruit and retain these highly-qualified instructors, to pay for their advanced education and training, and to purchase classroom technologies and enhancements. In other words, your contributions have a direct impact on the quality of each child’s experience while on campus. 
  • But that’s not all! While most of the Annual Fund goes directly to faculty support, contributions are also used to pay for financial aid; facilities maintenance and improvements; for enhancements to the arts, the library, and other investments, as needed.

Basic Q & A

  • Do other independent schools have annual funds? Yes. They ALL do.
  • Who oversees the Annual Fund? The GSL Development Department (Denise DuBois Taylor, Sherry Emerson, and Kate Shelton) works with the Annual Fund chairs and volunteers to raise money each year. Under the watchful eye of the Head of School and the Board of Trustees, the day-to-day management of the dollars raised falls into the capable hands of GSL’s Director of Finance, Daniel Fundo.
  • How is the money used? Annual Fund dollars are used to maintain and improve the campus, to pay for advanced training for faculty, to provide financial aid to families, to upgrade technology, to expand After-School Care and Enrichment, and much more.
  • Does GSL have an endowment? Yes. The school has a general Endowment Fund plus:

The Anchor Fund - Providing long-term stability through a variety of investment opportunities.

The Dennis Cain Facilities Fund - For the maintenance of school buildings and grounds.

The Scholarship Fund - Providing need-based financial assistance to families of current or prospective students.

The Library Fund - Promote and supporting the GSL School library.

The Technology Fund - Providing state-of-the-art technology to students and staff.

The Arts Fund - Promoting and supporting a variety of arts activities schoolwide.

  • Can a small gift make a difference? Yes! Our school community is small with fewer supporters than a major high school or college. Because our donor base is limited, every gift counts!


All donations to the Annual Fund are tax-deductible!

We take Master Card, Visa, and American Express.

You may pledge now and pay later.
(Donors have until July 2017 to pay off their pledges.)

You may make a series of monthly installments.

You may pledge or pay using the enclosed remittance envelope.

You may pledge or pay on-line.

You may be a Lead Donor for as little as $42 a month!
(Lead Donors pledge a minimum of $500, which earns them an invitation to the hugely popular, annual Lead Donor Cocktail Party.)

Click Here to Donate!