United Way of Northeast Florida’s 2016 Tocqueville Society Third Thursday Luncheon Series concluded April 19 with a presentation by Sherry Magill, president of the Jessie Ball duPont Fund and visionary of United Way’s new home, Jessie Ball duPont Center.
The annual Luncheon Series, exclusively for Tocqueville Society members, features prominent community leaders who speak on a topic of their choice. April 19, Magill discussed the economic impact of transforming the former Main Jacksonville Public Library into the Jessie Ball duPont Center, a “gathering place for philanthropy and nonprofits in the heart of downtown Jacksonville.”
“Donors do not want to fund salaries and rent,” said Magill about her vision for the duPont Center.
The main goal for the duPont Center is to provide an affordable, technologically advanced office space to help drive down operating expenses for nonprofits. By relocating its office from Riverplace Tower to the duPont Center in January 2016, United Way, the building’s largest tenant, will save more than $1 million over 10 years.
Magill also shared the nonprofit complex cost $24.5 million to complete, including demolition and outfitting, and features conference and learning centers equipped with SMART Boards and video-recapture technology. Currently, Magill said, the duPont Center stands at 95 percent capacity with enough interest to fill a second building.
“In order to have a high-quality life, we must have a high-performing nonprofit sector,” said Magill.