Tracy Family Foundation grants $331,570 to Mount Sterling church, $100,000 to school from Dorothy Tracy estate

Tracy Family Foundation

MOUNT STERLING, Ill. — The Tracy Family Foundation recently made the first two awards from the $1.8 million estate of Dot Foods co-founder Dorothy Tracy.  The foundation granted $331,570 to Holy Family Catholic Church to support a $1.15M project to restore the building’s exterior, and $100,000 to St. Mary School for new windows, totaling $431,570.  Both organizations are in Mount Sterling.

Dorothy Tracy, who died March 27, 2020, at age 91, co-founded Dot Foods, Inc. with her husband Robert (RT) Tracy. Based in Mount Sterling, Dot Foods has grown to be the largest food industry redistributor in North America. Dorothy and RT raised their 12 children in Mount Sterling and were fervent supporters of their community, and of Brown County as a whole, through volunteer work and philanthropic giving.

“Family, faith, and education were always at the top of Mom’s priorities, and knowing her estate gift will go to support those values means the world to me, the foundation, and the entire Tracy family,” Jean Buckley, daughter of RT and Dorothy and Tracy Family Foundation board president, said in a press release.

“Holy Family Church provides our family and the community with a peaceful sanctuary for prayer. The good Lord knew that when raising 12 rambunctious children, our mother needed a church to turn to for quiet reflection. Mom also was grateful to St. Mary School for providing spiritual and excellent academic education to her children. Mom was dedicated to taking care of the community that welcomed her and Dad so entirely when they settled in Mount Sterling in 1952.”

Dorothy Tracy

Restoration work on the exterior of Holy Family will consist a new slate roof, a lightning protection system, copper guttering, tuckpointing, painting and a new cross on the church’s steeple.

“Dorothy often played the organ during mass here at Holy Family. Her faith and this church were essential parts of the Tracy family’s life,” Father Aaron Kuhn said. “I can’t fully express how honored and excited the parishioners and the entire community are to receive an award from the Dorothy Tracy estate gift. The work on the church’s exterior will help bring this 160-year-old church back to its original splendor and position as a beautiful landmark in our town.”

Restoration work on St. Mary School also is underway, with four windows installed to date. Workers will replace an additional 52 windows in June when the school’s 125 students are on summer break. Work on both buildings should be complete by fall of 2023.

Dorothy often taught as a substitute teacher at St. Mary. The church also held an integral part in the Tracy family life.

“We lived just a few blocks away from Holy Family and St. Mary School,” said Susan Stamerjohn, a daughter of Dorothy and RT. “We have such fond memories of the church and school, and we are so happy to see these two institutions that played an integral part of our faith and family history receive a gift to help restore their buildings to best serve the next generation of parishioners and students.”

St. Mary School in Mount Sterling, Ill.

To learn more about the Tracy Family Foundation, visit It was established in 1997 by the Robert and Dorothy Tracy family to advance innovative, collaborative and sustainable change in Brown County and the surrounding region through organizations that share the values of family, faith, education, leadership, and community. TFF seeks to cultivate a philanthropic spirit in all generations of the Robert and Dorothy Tracy family by providing opportunities for the family to give and serve together. The Tracy Family Foundation is funded by Dot Foods.

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