Since the late 1880s, Scharbauer family members have been major contributors to the growth, development, and improvement of Midland, Texas. Today, the Scharbauer Foundation continues that tradition thanks to the generous philanthropy of Clarence Scharbauer, Jr. who funded the Scharbauer Foundation in 2010.
From the family’s early days in Texas, sheep ranching grew into cattle-raising which led to a giant ranching enterprise covering nearly 500,000 acres in west Texas and southeast New Mexico. The vast land holdings were home to the raising of horses and cattle recognized for quality and value, and later the properties yielded significant oil production in the energy-rich Permian Basin region.
Dedicated to making things better, Clarence Scharbauer Sr. led or assisted a multitude of important early-Midland civic efforts including starting the original First National Bank of Midland, donating land for what became the Midland International Air and Space Port, helping establish Midland Memorial Hospital, and building and operating the downtown Scharbauer Hotel to meet the needs of growing numbers of visitors and business travelers. Also in those early days, Mr. Scharbauer brought to Midland a powerful new radio station, KCRS (with call letters representing the names of Clarence and Ruth Scharbauer) which broadcast news, entertainment, and important weather information to citizens and ranchers across the vast West Texas prairie.
In recent decades, Scharbauer philanthropy has generously provided land for a community sports complex, local public schools, multiple economic development projects, highway development and expansion of the University of Texas of the Permian Basin.
Clarence Scharbauer, Jr. and his wife, Dorothy Turner Scharbauer, shared a passion for helping make Midland a better place. Before Mrs. Scharbauer passed away in 2005, the two also shared a love for breeding and racing championship quarter horses and thoroughbred horses. Among their many great horses was Alysheba, winner of the 1987 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. Mr. Scharbauer passed away in 2014.