Greenman Gift Award

The Greenman Gift was established in 2009 in honor of Jim Greenman, the former Chairman of our Foundation Board and Senior VP of Education and Training for Bright Horizons. Jim’s professional life was dedicated to the well being of children and families. He left a legacy of creating wonderful places for children and adults where they could play and learn, creating warm memories that would become a part of the fabric of their lives.

The Greenman Gift provides a $35,000 grant of direct financial and in kind contributions to one child care program each year to improve its facility in Jim’s honor. For more information about this Grant, contact Becky Bowman at

2009 – Child and Family Network Centers, Alexandria, VA

Child and Family Network Centers

Based in Alexandria, Virginia, The Child & Family Network Centers provides caring, high-quality free education and related services to at-risk children and families in their own neighborhoods to prepare and empower them for success in school and life. The organization also provides ESL and literacy support for parents and health services for the whole family.

The grant was used to renovate the organization’s Family Literacy Room where parents learning English as a Second Language now have a modern and comfortable classroom complete with new computers to help parents in job training and job search efforts. A portion of the grant will also be used to upgrade the organization’s technology infrastructure.

2010 – Little Angels, Los Angeles, CA

Website 2.5 Little AngelsLittle Angels is a child development center serving families in South Central Los Angeles created to assist working parents to raise happy, healthy, thriving children.

The grant was used to create a beautiful outdoor garden and play yard for the children where before there had been only concrete.

2011 – The Family Partnership, Minneapolis, MN

The Family Partnership, one of the oldest nonprofits in the Twin Cities, is committed to help improve the lives of the community’s most vulnerable children and families.

The grant was used to turn an overgrown side lot at the center into the Jim Greenman Urban Wilderness, a space to help the urban students feel connected to and learn more about nature.

2012 – The Frazer Center, Altanta, GA

The Frazer Center is a nonprofit agency with a long-standing history of providing outstanding services to infants, preschoolers and adults with physical and intellectual disabilities such as cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorders and other disorders.  It is one of only a few inclusive child care programs in metro Atlanta and are unique in that both children and adults with disabilities are afforded day services at the same site.

The grant was used to turn the Frazer Center’s 1,600-square-foot existing courtyard was turned into a space that integrates beauty and function. The Garden of the 5 Senses is a space that invites exploration and imagination while also stimulating learning. In addition to plants that are beautiful to see, touch, smell, and taste, there is a small amphitheater for children to listen to stories and a special humming stone. This space will also be used as an outdoor classroom and reading area.

2013 – Boyer Clinic, Seattle, WA

BoyerBoyer Children’s Clinic improves the quality of life of children with neuromuscular disorders or other developmental delays by providing the best solutions for each child and family.

The grant was used to design an early childhood special education consultation classroom for speech-language therapy.  Additional accommodations will include small toilets and sinks that are age-appropriate and equipped for young children with special healthcare needs. Specialized therapeutic and educational equipment will be purchased and utilized to mirror Boyer’s commitment to utilizing the most up-to-date interventions.

 2014 – Oak Hill Academy, TX

GG Musical Play TubesThe mission of Oak Hill Academy in Dallas is to provide specialized education for students, pre-k through 12th grade, which exhibit or are at-risk for learning differences and/or social challenges. They are in the process of creating a Learning Garden for their students as well as the local community.

The grant was used to fund the musical tube area in the Learning Garden.

2015- Chicago Childare Society, Chicago, IL

To improve a facility in Jim’s honor, this special grant of $35,000 is awarded annually to one child care center serving primarily low- and middle-income families and striving for excellence in quality child care and early education. The seventh annual recipient was Chicago Childcare Society, Hyde Park Center in Chicago Illinois. Chicago Child Care Society (CCCS) is the oldest child welfare agency in the state of Illinois. Their Hyde Park Preschool Center, located in the agency headquarters building, has been a key component of fulfilling that mission since 1962. The center gives us much to be proud of. They recently earned reaccreditation with the National Association for the Education of Young Children. They also earned the Gold Circle of Quality designation from ExeleRate, which assesses the quality of child care centers throughout Illinois. The area’s division vice president of operations was among the Bright Horizons family members who visited Hype Park before deciding unanimously to award the school the Greenman Gift.


About Jim Greenman (1950-2009):

Jim Greenman was a legend within Bright Horizons and the entire field of early education and was President of the Bright Horizons Foundation for Children. He brought respect to early educators by insisting on respect for young children. He knew the purpose in their play and unveiled it for the world to see messy little scientists, emerging builders, acrobats and artisans. And he ensured that we don’t ask, “How smart is this child?” but rather, “How is this child smart?”

Jim advocated for children and their teachers from the streets of Minnesota to the halls of government in Washington, D.C. to the classrooms in child care centers around the globe, and he was a champion for men in child care. At Bright Horizons his impact is reflected in gentle book nooks in the toddler classrooms, in the preschools’ dramatic play corners, and the spots on playgrounds dedicated to the exploration of even the youngest infants. He led the Bright Horizons Foundation for Children with a great sense of purpose. Whether in the Head Start programs of his earliest years or in the Bright Space playrooms for children in crisis that he helped to build across the U.S. and Europe, Jim was dedicated to ensuring that all children, no matter their circumstances, have spaces to call their own, to learn, to be safe and to grow.

As Senior Vice President of Education and Program Development, Jim was the architect of Bright Horizons’ The World at their Fingertips curriculum and Bright Horizons University and was involved in the design and program development of many of the company’s workplace child care centers. He worked with nationally and internationally known architectural firms and taught with a team at the Institute on Child Care Design for the Harvard Graduate School of Design.