About the Grant

Discover the story behind the grant’s founding, how organizations can qualify and our criteria for selecting recipients.

The Man Who Inspired Us

Paul Purcell's leadership lives on in Baird's associates, our commitment to clients and genuine care for the communities we serve.



Discover the Difference We Make Together

In His Own Words – Paul’s Commitment to Education

Learn about the man who inspired the mission and gave his name to the Paul Purcell "Kids Win!" Annual Baird Education Grant.

Meet Our Inaugural Grant Recipients

The leaders of the organizations that received the first-ever Paul Purcell "Kids Win!" Annual Baird Education Grants explain how the funds will be used in their communities.

Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Milwaukee is a Catholic high school for young women and men of all faiths and limited financial means that integrates rigorous academics, professional work experiences and spiritual development to empower graduates to succeed in college and life. This grant will support development of a transformational, hands-on learning Innovation Center that will include a design lab, 3D printing and fabrication space, robotics (coding/circuitry) space and a media/podcasting production area. The center will help reduce educational inequalities with resources, tools, and inspiration, significantly enhance hundreds of urban students’ 21st century skill development and support a more skilled, inclusive, and diverse workforce for Milwaukee.

Serving children and youth in the Nashville area, Martha O’Bryan Center is a community organization that empowers individuals in poverty to transform their lives through work, education, employment, and fellowship. Grant funds will support the Center’s Post-Secondary Pipeline program, which provides low-income, first-generation college students with persistence coaching and support services in preparation of and throughout their post-secondary careers. This ensures students have successful transitions, retention, and degree attainment. The program has divergent pathways based on students’ post-secondary and career aspirations and is flexible, easily allowing students to seamlessly transition from the college readiness program (Post Secondary Success) and employment support (Youth Employment Hub).

Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep, a Catholic high school in Waukegan, Illinois, empowers young people of limited economic means to become men and women of faith, purpose, and service. Through a rigorous college preparatory curriculum, integrated with relevant work study experience, Cristo Rey St. Martin students graduate ready to succeed in college and life. Grant funds will support an entrepreneurial endeavor, La Mesita de Martin, which is an extension of their Corporate Work Study Program. La Mesita de Martín will be an in-school coffee and snack shop, where students will learn the skills required to run a small, private enterprise including budgeting, inventory management, receipt reconciliation, customer relationships, marketing and sales.

The mission of Teach For America - Greater Chicago-Northwest Indiana is to find, develop, and support a diverse network of teachers who expand opportunity for children from classrooms, schools, and every sector and field that shapes the broader systems in which schools operate. Baird’s support of Teach For America will fund programs to raise up the next generation of educators and therefore increase opportunities for youth living in low-income neighborhoods in Chicago-Northwest Indiana. This supports youths’ goals of graduating from high school and college, obtaining a career where they can financially thrive, and realizing the hopes and dreams they have for themselves and their communities.

Golden Apple Foundation for Excellence in Teaching, an organization focused on teacher development and recognition, has a vision in which every classroom has a great educator. To realize this, Golden Apple is committed to making a material difference in resolving the teacher shortage in Chicago and throughout the state of Illinois in schools-of-need. This grant will support the Golden Apple Scholars program, which develops and supports largely diverse, first-generation aspiring educators. This multi-year program recruits aspiring educators in Illinois, supports them throughout undergraduate study, prepares them with intensive in-residence training each summer, helps them find a right-fit placement in a school-of-need and mentors them throughout their first years in the classroom to become highly effective teachers who stay.

The mission of Nativity Academy at St. Boniface, a school in Louisville, Kentucky, serving students in grades 6-8 and also offering programs that prepare motivated students all the way through high school and college, is to transform the lives of students who have a commitment to achieve and whose families demonstrate financial need. Funds from the grant will support the expansion of Nativity Academy’s College Cares Program, providing first-generation college students of color with tools and assistance to ensure success. This includes financial assistance, emergency fund assistance, mentoring, coaching, and general connectiveness and support.

Teach For America - Milwaukee finds, develops, and supports a diverse network of leaders who expand opportunity for children from classrooms, schools, and every sector and field that shapes the broader systems in which schools operate. The organization remains guided by the priority to recruit and support outstanding and diverse teachers and cultivate long-term alumni impact in Milwaukee. Through this grant, TFA Milwaukee will be able to recruit, select, train, and support up to 10 corps educators for the 2021-2022 school year, thereby building out talent pipelines for the City of Milwaukee and ensuring that over 500 Milwaukee Kids Win!

Group of business associates


Explore Opportunities