Home Foundation Information History

A Simple Formula

Lois and H. Dale Bright fund­ed the H. Dale and Lois Bright Foun­da­tion in 1957. Since that time their Foun­da­tion has qui­et­ly con­tributed mil­lions of dol­lars to Iowa orga­ni­za­tions, char­i­ties and edu­ca­tion­al institutions.

We worked hard, saved care­ful­ly, invest­ed wise­ly and gave back when we could,” Lois says. I am always sur­prised when I remem­ber that such a sim­ple for­mu­la pro­duced so much.”

A History of Hard Work

Dale and Lois both grew up in the small, south­ern Iowa com­mu­ni­ty of Lineville and grad­u­at­ed in the years 1928 and 1929 respec­tive­ly. After grad­u­a­tion both left Lineville for Des Moines. Dale spent two years attend­ing Capi­tol City Com­mer­cial Col­lege and Lois went to work sewing the back seam of women’s stock­ing at Rollins Hosiery Mill. Dale held sev­er­al jobs before going to work in 1939 for a small tool and die com­pa­ny in Des Moines called West­ern Tool & Stamp­ing Co. When Dale start­ed, West­ern Tool had only sev­en employ­ees. At the time he retired as vice pres­i­dent of West­ern Tool in 1958, it employed over 800 peo­ple and was the largest lawn mow­er man­u­fac­tur­er in the country.

In 1995 Dale was in fail­ing health when he died on August 14, 1996 at age, 86. Lois car­ried out the vision she and Dale had for the Bright Foun­da­tion until her death on Octo­ber 26, 2013 at age 102. As would be expect­ed of a cou­ple who spent their lives giv­ing to oth­ers, their Foun­da­tion lives on to help young Iowans well into the future.

Dedicated to Helping Iowans

Over the years, many wor­thy orga­ni­za­tions and indi­vid­u­als have been recip­i­ents of Bright Foun­da­tion awards.

In 2012, the Foun­da­tion made its first Bright Schol­ars of Iowa Awards. These four-year renew­able schol­ar­ships are designed to make high­er edu­ca­tion at Iowa uni­ver­si­ties and com­mu­ni­ty col­leges pos­si­ble for tal­ent­ed young Iowans who may not oth­er­wise have the means to get a col­lege edu­ca­tion. The Lois Dale Schol­ar­ship was added in 2015 for the same pur­pose for stu­dents grad­u­at­ing from the Des Moines Pub­lic Schools, where Lois and Dale Bright made their home for over 70 years.

If we could help even one child, it would mean a lot to us.”