Dick Lidstad has devoted much of his life to philanthropy, and wife Peggy partnered with him to make charitable giving a part of their family’s culture.
Each year, the Lidstads host their children to discuss a list of nonprofits, align organizational values with their own, and make a collective decision about the recipient of their family’s collective annual gifts. Each family member brings forward an idea, outlines their respective organization’s mission, and makes a case for its future.
Harmony Foundation International makes the Lidstads’ list of worthy organizations.
“I love barbershop harmony,” Dick said.
Much like philanthropy, barbershop is a part of the family culture. Dick grew up in a musical family and loved listening to The Four Freshmen in high school. At one point, he joined some buddies in a barbershop quartet. However, he did not take it on as a hobby until years later when he and his son were introduced by Peggy to a barbershop concert in St. Paul. They were hooked, and they sang side by side in the St. Paul Chorus until his son went to college. A part of the Land O’ Lakes District, Dick since has remained a district member and supporter, even when he was not actively singing.
In addition to a lifetime as a Barbershopper, Dick spent more than 40 years at 3M. He began working for the company as a student and worked his way up to high-level leadership before retirement. Regardless of his job position, he remained true to his charitable spirit. Dick is responsible for helping to build the employee giving campaign for the United Way within the organization, and he worked to connect 3M with like-minded organizations benefiting the community.
On the homefront, Dick and Peggy have the life experience of creating their own path from meager beginnings and are proud to be able to support their favorite organizations and pass along their passion for giving to their children.
“Even when our children were small and we didn’t have money to speak of, we felt it was important to find ways to support our church and other organizations important in the community,” Dick said.
For the Lidstads, a combination of love for barbershop and generous spirit culminated in a gift to motivate others to leave a Legacy of Harmony for future generations. They were inaugural donors to the matching fund that generated more than $7.5 million in endowment gifts for HFI.