The Houston Area Urban League (HAUL) recently announced a transformational gift that will allow the organization to dramatically expand and enhance the reach of its empowerment programs. 

Philanthropist and author MacKenzie Scott donated $4.2 millionthe largest single contribution in HAUL’s 54-year history. 

“We’re honored and grateful that Ms. Scott and her team have recognized the Urban League’s value to and impact on the community,” said HAUL President and CEO Judson Robinson, III. “By placing racial equity and social justice at the forefront of her philanthropic mission, Ms. Scott is shining a much-needed spotlight on the nation’s structural and institutional limitations and helping to build a stronger, more resilient society for everyone.” 

HAUL will use the gift to ensure the agency’s long-term sustainability and support its Strategic Plan to expand program services, outreach, awareness, and service access to more Black and other marginalized people in our community.

But according to HAUL board chairman Calvin Guidry, don’t expect the bulk of the funds to go to just one HAUL initiative.

“Overall, what we’re trying to do is make self-sufficient our marginalized communities,” said Guidry. “So, that’s everything from job creation to housing and housing support, and all types of things that we’re doing.

Guidry said when he first received news of Scott’s gift, besides being overwhelmed and elated and saying “Look at God,” he thought about how many more clients HAUL will be able to serve.

“Our strategic plan is all about our growth and our ability to service the community better. This gift will help us do that in a major way,” he added.

“We are elated that our work and its outcomes have been recognized and rewarded with this level of support”, said Robinson.  

HAUL is one of 25 Urban League affiliates around the nation that received similar donations from Ms. Scott, who in 2019 signed The Giving Pledge, a promise by the world’s wealthiest individuals and families to dedicate the majority of their wealth to charitable causes.  

Since 1968, HAUL has advocated for and provided social services to disadvantaged people of all races, gender, age groups, and/or disabilities. HAUL operates the following six (6) programs targeting residents in economically disadvantaged geographic areas in the Greater Houston area: Education and Youth Development; Workforce and Economic Development; Workforce Training; Housing; Social Justice; and Health and Wellness Initiatives. These programs impact the lives of over 10,000 people each year. For more information, please call 713-393-8700 or visit