lesher-portraitFrom the majestic heights of Mt. Diablo to the fertile agricultural flatlands of Brentwood and Byron, Contra Costa County is a richly diversified area of California. It encompasses the meandering waterways and shores of the Delta, the thriving business centers of Concord and Walnut Creek, and the small town charm of Danville. It is home to a rapidly emerging high-tech sector in Richmond and the San Ramon business corridor, as well as some of the country’s finest produce farms in Brentwood and east county. Contra Costa covers over 730 square miles and is home to over one million residents.

The Dean & Margaret Lesher Foundation has a clear and simple mission – to enhance the quality of life for the residents of this extraordinary place. Established in 1989, the grants of the Foundation have touched many lives and communities. From computer grants in the schools to funding for day care centers, homeless shelters, and performing arts venues – the mission of the Lesher Foundation is to support our nonprofit partners and join with them to create a better place.

The Lesher Foundation has awarded grants reaching citizens in all parts of Contra Costa County. True to the original wishes of Dean and Margaret Lesher, the Foundation continues to build on the strengths of the community by supporting organizations and programs that provide help and support to people in need, enhance and enrich the lives of all citizens, and promote a healthy and exciting future for the community.

As we continue the work of improving Contra Costa County, the Lesher Foundation seeks to identify those programs and projects that reflect the excellent service that we believe our residents deserve. From our three focus areas – significant educational support for our young people, a commitment to the visual and performing arts essential to a vibrant and healthy community, and support for a wide variety of programs to nurture children and strengthen families – we continue to believe that the road towards a better Contra Costa is a journey well worth taking.

Cynthia Ann Lesher

Melissa Stafford Jones
Executive Director


Cynthia Ann Lesher – President
Steve Lesher – Vice President
Linda L. Davis – Secretary/Treasurer

David Lesher
Joseph Lesher
Tim Lesher
Kathleen Odne
Jill A. O’Brien


Melissa Stafford Jones – Executive Director

Susan Haley – Senior Program Officer/Director of Operations

Curtis Yancy – Grants Associate