Our Founders


The Tocker Foundation began in 1964 to implement the philanthropic interests of Phillip and Olive Tocker. Phillip Tocker was a practicing attorney, but changed careers in his later years by purchasing the Waco outdoor advertising plant and later expanding to own outdoor advertising plants throughout the United States. His vocational career culminated to the position of President of the Outdoor Advertising Association of America. After retiring to Austin, Texas in 1973, Phillip and Olive Tocker actively pursued their avocations.

Phillip and Olive Tocker endowed the foundation with their estates in 1994 and 1993 respectively. 

After years of supporting a wide range of community-based causes, the foundation discovered a need in small, rural, Texas libraries serving populations of 12,000 or less. In 1992 the foundation board then began focusing their grant distribution in this way. The foundation partners with community libraries to meet the particular needs of the community.