116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY — A mother of two, “giving with warm hands,” has donated $1 million to the Iowa City Community School District Foundation, hoping her gift will encourage others to donate money while they’re still alive to see the impact.
“I wanted to inspire other people to make these larger commitments to the level they’re able to,” Boge said.
Boge’s gift will go toward closing opportunity gaps and supporting students in need.
Her gift is the largest donation in the foundation’s 40-year history and will be awarded in $50,000 installments over the next 20 years.
Sometimes it’s easier not to go to school, Boge said.
“We want it to be easy for children to go to school every day — if that means making sure they have clean clothes, effective transportation, are well-fed.” she said. “There’s a lot of things that need to happen before learning.”
She said her decision to make the gift was influenced by seeing young parents at Tate High School — Iowa City’s alternative high school — balance schoolwork and caring for a child.
“I’m a single mother, but I have every advantage in the world, and it’s still hard,” Boge said. “I can’t imagine being 17 years old with a baby trying to stay in school. That was someone I needed to help.”
While Boge, 48, wants to give her children “every opportunity,” she doesn’t want to create a “disincentive to work,” she said. “I want them to be hardworking and learn to support themselves.
“Giving gifts like this ensures my kids will need to work hard like I did,” said Boge, whose daughter, Delores, is a seventh-grader at Northwest Junior High and son, Grayson, is a fifth-grader at Willowwind, a private school in Iowa City. Grayson previously attended Wickham Elementary in the Iowa City district.
Boge, originally from rural Farley in Dubuque County, has lived in Iowa City since she was 18, when she enrolled at the University of Iowa. She has a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s in business administration.
She has worked at Integrated DNA Technologies in Coralville since 1995, where she started as a production scientist. In a series of executive roles, she professionalized the company’s supply chain and logistics, according to her company bio. She has been the company’s senior vice president of global operations since May 2021.
Boge, a member of the Iowa City school foundation’s board, also served on the state board of the Iowa Innovation Council.
No decisions have been made on how Boge’s gift will be used. The needs of students 20 years from now, she said, could be very different from their needs today.
“This kind of commitment is inspiring, and I want to express our deepest gratitude to Christine,” said Susan Brennan, executive director of the Iowa City Community School District Foundation.
“A fund like this allows us to remain nimble to changing district needs and address some of the most difficult learning roadblocks that many of our students face,” Brennan said in a statement.
“It has been a pleasure to get to know Christine better. I have developed a more profound appreciation for the causes that matter to her. We are grateful that the education and opportunities for our students top her list.”
In honor of Boge’s donation, the foundation will establish the Christine Boge Greatest Need Fund.
“A gift of this magnitude is a first for our foundation and our district,” said district Superintendent Matt Degner.
“The Christine Boge Greatest Need fund will help us develop and sustain innovative programs, events and opportunities for our students,” he said. “We sincerely thank Christine for her generosity. Her gift will have a long-lasting impact on the children in our community.”
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