Tom Cross Endowment Fund


The Thomas A. Cross Endowment Fund specifically fosters, seeks, encourages and receives gifts to enhance and develop parks and recreation programs and facilities throughout Pierce County .

Friends of Parks and Recreation recognize the importance of providing modernized park facilities and expanding parks and recreation services for the citizens of Pierce County.

Contributions of gifts and donations from generous citizens have helped the Parks and Recreation Department to provide more for all in our community. In this time of shrinking budgets and growing communities, altruistic gifts are vital to continue services for parks and recreation. The Thomas A. Cross Parks and Recreation Endowment Fund has been created to collect these donations and guide them to the greatest good for the community.

About Tom Cross

Tom Cross was Pierce County's first Parks and Recreation director. A lifelong Pierce County resident, Tom began his career in 1947, with the Metropolitan Parks District of Tacoma. When Pierce County created the Parks Department in 1958, Tom was chosen to head the department. He spent the next 23 years nurturing parks and recreation programs throughout the county.

By the time he retired in 1981, Tom had guided the department from its modest beginning of 10 sites comprising 107 acres and 1,650 feet of waterfront to 43 sites comprising 1,800 acres and 60,000 feet of waterfront

Cross was instrumental in the development of the Lake Spanaway Golf Course, Sprinker Recreation Center, Gonyea Playfield, Spanaway Park, Harry Todd Park, Forest Park, Lakewood Active Park, the Lakewood Community Center, acquisition of the boat launch and seaplane base at North American Lake and worked with Lakewood Kiwanis toward developing Kiwanis Park. He worked to negotiate a lease with the State of Washington for Fort Steilacoom Park and Fort Steilacoom Golf Course for the recreational pleasure of the general public.

Tom used his foresight to establish an interconnected network of schools, local government and community service groups, all working together to provide more recreation opportunities and facilities for the citizens of Pierce County.

Tom passed away in December of 2003. In his last years he was able to see this fund grow and was pleased to know that this endowment will benefit future generations.

The Thomas A. Cross Parks and Recreation Endowment Fund is a lasting legacy to a man who knew the benefits of play. Throughout his life, Tom strove to ensure that all Pierce County residents should have numerous and wildly varied opportunities for recreation. Please join us in acknowledging his work while providing for future generations with a donation.


Gifts can be mailed to:
Greater Tacoma Community Foundation
Thomas A. Cross Parks and Recreation Endowment Fund
950 Pacific Ave Ste 1100
Tacoma, WA 98402

All donations are tax deductible. If you would like further information about the Thomas A. Cross Parks and Recreation Endowment Fund, please contact Kyle Wintermute at (253) 798-4015 or email.