News & Press
Columbus public and private sectors teamed up to raise $15.3 million for new Champion Companies Milo-Grogan Club, serving youth for decades to come starting June 2022
COLUMBUS, Ohio (June 3, 2022) – The Champion Companies, a leading multi-family investment, development and management firm in Central Ohio, today celebrates the upcoming grand opening of an almost two-year-long effort to construct a new, state-of-the-art Boys & Girls Club at 1012 Cleveland Avenue, replacing the former Milo-Grogan building. Alongside a lead gift, Champion’s involvement ranged from managing the project’s permitting to spearheading design, engineering and fundraising efforts.
What was estimated to be a $13.5 million comprehensive campaign has currently raised $15.3 million. The project was made possible by donations from The Champion Companies, the Wolfe family, the Nationwide Foundation, Fifth Third Bank, Huntington, the Ingram-White Castle Foundation and additional contributions from local partners, leaders, the community and local businesses. The end result far exceeded expectations and underscores the power of business and nonprofit collaboration, as well as the community’s strong commitment to investing in future generations. The funds raised will help finance capital and operational/programmatic investments.
“From the ideation of this project to opening the doors, we have witnessed the impact that can be made when organizations come together with the common goal of making a difference,” said Champion President & CEO, and campaign co-chair Brian Yeager. “It is an indescribable feeling to see our vision come to life, putting smiles on the faces of children who need them the most. We are beyond grateful for our generous donors because the ultimate reward of a safe and inclusive environment for our youth to grow is priceless.”
Conversations about the new Club began after a charity basketball game at the former Milo-Grogan building. Milo-Grogan Club alumnus and campaign co-chair, Jordan Miller, worked alongside Yeager and Champion co-founder, Michelle Yeager-Thornton, to realize the vision for a new and durable space that would serve as a benchmark for youth-serving organizations across the country. Following the official groundbreaking in November of 2020, the Champion team remained involved and assisted construction with final installation and design tasks. The completed Club more than doubles the size of the previous building at 24,160-square-feet. The Boys & Girls Clubs expects to serve more than four thousand Ohio kids and teens over the next year with this additional space.
A public grand opening celebration will be held on-site on Friday, June 10 from 4-7 p.m., complete with family-friendly activities/games, inflatables, fair-style food and more. Community members can preview the state-of-the-art amenities, including the gym, a career development room, conference room, outdoor garden and courtyard with seating, theater and administrative offices.
“Champion’s ongoing partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Ohio has been invaluable, and we look forward to furthering our impact by remaining actively involved with the club,” said Yeager.
About The Champion Companies:
In 2010, siblings Brian and Michelle Yeager founded The Champion Companies, a multi-family investment, development and management firm in Central Ohio. Over the last decade, The Champion Companies built a real estate profile worth over $1 billion with 5,000 Class A multi family units.
The Champion Companies’ mission is to deliver the best investment, career and living experience ever. In addition to providing quality customer service and awesome experiences for its residents, Champion is committed to serving the greater Columbus community. In 2014, Champion established its philanthropic foundation, Champion Cares, and has since partnered with a multitude of charities, including YWCA, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Ohio, Children’s Hunger Alliance, Habitat for Humanity and Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Ohio.
To learn more about The Champion Companies, please visit thechampioncompanies.com.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Ohio:
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Ohio has been providing afterschool and summer programming to underserved youth in Columbus since 1948. An affiliate of Boys & Girls Clubs of America, which serves more than four million youth annually throughout the United States, Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Ohio’s mission is to empower all young people to reach their full potential as productive, caring and responsible citizens. The organization’s youth development programs focus on three program pillars: Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles and Good Character & Citizenship.
To learn more about the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Ohio, please visit https://www.bgccentralohio.org/.