George4 Foundation Puts a Focus on Youth and the Underprivileged
Writer / Renee Larr
Giving back to the community and serving individuals is a way of life for George Steinbrenner IV. His grandfather, George Steinbrenner, imparted to him at an early age that with privilege comes responsibility. He often said, “If you do something good for someone, and more than two people saw it, you did it for the wrong reason.”
George moved to Indianapolis in 2016 after growing up in New York City and the Tampa Bay area. In 2020 he, along with his sister, Julia Steinbrenner, founded the George4 Foundation. She serves as executive director.
The nonprofit’s mission is the education and welfare of local youth through supporting pediatric medical research initiatives, and uplifting underprivileged and minority families.
“The foundation was built upon four pillars,” George says. “Those include food security, human rights, education and pediatric health. Our goal as a foundation is to work with organizations that fit one or most of our pillars.”
George spent a semester of his junior year in high school volunteering in the afternoons at the Boys & Girls Club in Pinellas Park, Florida.
“It was such a great experience, and it’s an organization that’s been close to my and my family’s heart for many years,” he says. “It’s a great place for kids to spend some time after school, get a good meal, assistance with homework and play some basketball. It aligns with our pillars.”
The siblings credit seeing the rest of their family involved in philanthropy for their passion for lending a helping hand.
“My mom was on several different boards, and we’ve been volunteering since we could move our bodies and use our words,” Julia says. “It’s ingrained in us. It was always of the utmost importance for our family that you give back to your community, and you give back to other people. That’s more important than anything that you’re going to do with your life.”
George is president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Steinbrenner Racing. His involvement in auto racing led to partnerships for the foundation.
“Our partnerships with NEFT vodka and Capstone Turbine came about through the racing team,” Julia says. “These are companies that fit in well with our four pillars. Those were an early-on pairing. Brightmark has also been a fantastic partner of ours. Their CEO, Bob, introduced us to some other organizations within Indianapolis like RecycleForce that we’re excited to have as a partner. They’ve all really helped us infiltrate the philanthropic scene in Indy.”
The George4 Foundation recently gifted a van to GiGi’s Playhouse in Indianapolis. Julia sat on the board of GiGi’s Playhouse in Tampa. She translated that relationship into one here.
The foundation staff plans to branch out into other areas to serve.
“As we’re in the IndyCar circuit, getting involved in those markets surrounding our travels is important to us,” George says. “We held an event in Long Beach, California, for our IndyCar finale. We’re also exploring ways to hold events in other midwest cities like Milwaukee, Columbus and Cleveland.”
For more information, visit george4.org or text “G4” to 55433.