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How do I become a member of the Victor F. Lawson Society?

The Victor F. Lawson Society honors those whose lifetime personal giving to Chicago Commons is greater than or equal to $25,000. Membership is achieved through monetary donations, which may include cash, stock transfers, in-kind gifts, family foundations, and/or donor-advised funds.


  • Invitation to Victor F. Lawson Society reception with President & CEO, board chair, and other VFL Society members
  • Early invitations to Chicago Commons events
  • Open invitation to tour community centers
  • Special recognition in the annual report, on the website, and at events
  • Receive mid-year communication from Chicago Commons’ President & CEO
  • Invitations to donor recognition events
  • Subscription to our e-newsletter
Portrait of Victor Lawson.
Who is Victor F. Lawson?

Victor F. Lawson served on the board of Chicago Commons in its early years and owned and operated the Chicago Daily News for nearly 50 years. He believed strongly in the settlement house philosophy and was an ardent supporter and defender of Chicago Commons’ founder Graham Taylor and supported the organization until his death in 1925. Mr. Lawson was a progressive yet modest philanthropist who invested in systemic reforms that would uplift communities as well as move Chicago forward economically. With Mr. Lawson’s financial support, Chicago Commons expanded programming, moved into a larger facility, and founded the Institute of Social Science and Arts – now the University of Chicago’s School of Social Service Administration. He also provided editorial space in his paper weekly for Graham Taylor to advocate for the needs of working-class Chicago.

Have a question?

Have questions? Please contact Cheryl Wisniewski, Vice President of Development at or 773-826-4256.

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