In addition to playing a strong role within The Grupe Company, one of the largest, privately held real estate companies in the United States, Phyllis Lingo Grupe for many years has dedicated herself and her time to helping children succeed.

She was one of the founders and is chairperson of the Community Partnership for Families of San Joaquin, which since 1998 has partnered with neighborhood groups, faith-based organizations, schools, businesses, and public and private health agencies to end the vicious cycle of generational poverty in San Joaquin County.

Grupe also was a founding member in 1997 of San Joaquin A+, a not-for-profit volunteer organization that enhances the education of the youth of San Joaquin County.

In 1989 she created the national Project for Excellence in Public Education, which develops private sector funding for public education programs, and the related Grupe Foundation for Excellence in Public Education. She is a past board member of the Children's Home of Stockton and a member of the Urban Land Institute. In 2005 she was honored as a Woman of the Year by the California State Assembly and in 1992 was named a Role Model of the Year by the Girl Scouts.

Grupe also is a member of the Urban Land Institute, and has helped organize programs with an emphasis on personal development, local culture, cuisine, history and art. Additionally, Mrs. Grupe is a member of the World Presidents Organization. With her husband Fritz, she has received the 1993 STAR Award given by the Stockton Arts Commission; the 2002 Stocktonian of the Year, the 2006 Goodwill Helping Hands Award, the 2007 Bravo Award for Community Partners and the 2012 Athena Leadership Award.

She has served as a board member of the Children's Home of Stockton; The Equine Research Laboratory at UC Davis; The Bank of America California Livestock Symposium, and the San Joaquin Delta College Department of Equine Management.

In recognition of her accomplishments as a community leader and her devotion to education, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, Stanislaus are proud to confer upon Phyllis Grupe the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.