Written by The Business Journal Staff
The Ruiz family, owners of Ruiz Foods in Dinuba, has pledged $125,000 to support the Institute for Family Business (IFB) at Fresno State.
The pledge serves as the lead gift in an effort to establish a $1 million endowment and provide sustained support for the Institute.
“Fred Ruiz has been instrumental to the Institute for Family Business since its inception 27 years ago,” said Dr. Robert Harper, dean of the Craig School of Business at Fresno State. “Now this gift to kick start an endowment campaign will ensure lasting support for a vital community resource.”
According to the school, the IFB was established to preserve family business heritage and provide a forum for exchanging ideas, researching findings and providing education about the unique issues and opportunities facing family firms.
“We know that family-owned businesses run deep in the Valley, but only 13 percent make it to generation three,” said Jane Olvera Quebe, owner of family-owned JP Marketing and chair of IFB. “The Institute for Family Business is there to engage in these businesses and provide the necessary support to address their needs. Whether it’s financial, legal, marketing or even emotional support, we are here to improve the odds of keeping these businesses intact.”
The Ruiz family said the gift is intended to help support the community resource and promote family businesses as a catalyst for economic growth in the region.
“The Ruiz Family is very pleased to launch this endowment supporting the legacy founded by a board dedicated to family-owned businesses,” Ruiz said. “We hope other family businesses will join us for the benefit of the Institute and family-owned businesses for generations to come.”
Ruiz established the company with his father, Louis, in 1964. Today, the food manufacturing company employs more than 3,000 people and has facilities in California, Texas and South Carolina.