2019 Annual Report

Let’s Take a Look Back at Last Year

Building on a Family Legacy

Since 1933 we’ve served people in Texas and beyond in various ways according to the needs of the time, including improving literacy and mental health care, funding outdoor recreation opportunities, hosting ecumenical Christian conversations, and creating camp experiences for children and families from an array of social and economic backgrounds.

Today, we are building upon a strong legacy of philanthropy by strengthening our legacy programs and building new ones, including initiatives for vulnerable communities in San Antonio and the Texas Hill Country.

Each new generation has expressed a vision that builds on the work of previous generations:

“We hope to find one (property) with several hundred acres, with rock buildings to care for at least 100 children at once… It is to be for religious and character-building purposes… We would probably call it H. E. Butt Foundation Camp. In general, our first aim would be to put a first-class camping experience within the reach of every child.”

— Mary Holdsworth Butt, President 1933-1982


“Everyone has a story. The question is whether or not we are going to love each other enough to be able to share our stories and receive help and strength and healing for the journey… What we dream of when we imagine a place that will cure all our maladies is really the presence of God.”

— Howard Butt, Jr., President 1982-2015


“Society can be controlling, skeptical, and unimaginative, making it difficult to embrace hope, mystery, beauty, and love. But God is always at work transforming all creation according to his timing, and we believe God uniquely uses creation, creativity, and the arts to point to and unlock hope, mystery, beauty, and love.”

— David Rogers, President 2015-Present


Canyon by the Numbers

Note: table includes estimates based on data from November 20, 2019

Where the Money Goes

Our financial model relies primarily on our endowment as the source of our operating expenses, supplemented by program revenues from our three fee-based programs. The endowment has been growing since the Foundation’s inception in the early 1930s, with greater growth in recent years due to the ongoing generosity of the Butt family. These gifts, combined with support from donors and capital campaigns, enable our programs to grow and thrive.

More from this issue

If Nothing Had Ever Gone Wrong

Our family makes too much money to qualify for help—but not enough to survive.

Cool, Clear Water

River stewardship means safe water for critters and neighbors.

A Place for Neighbors

Where seniors play and lead a new generation.

A Lifetime of Laity Lodge

Gene and Ellen Seaman share 58 years of attending retreats together.