Habitat for Humanity of Collier County has received a donation of $ 1 million from award-winning investigative journalist and freelance writer Toni Stabile. The donation will fund the purchase of land, enabling 120 new qualifying partner families to become homeowners. Stabile’s four books, under three titles, investigated cosmetics and grooming items used daily throughout the country. The Los Angeles Times called her first book, Cosmetics: Trick or Treat?, the most chilling expose since Ralph Nader’s Unsafe at Any Speed.  It prompted U.S. Senate hearings, a TV award for Service to Consumers and mandatory ingredient disclosure and labeling, in 1977, of all cosmetic ingredients from toothpaste to foot powder.

The neighborhood, 17 acres at the corner of Market Road and Davis Blvd. in Naples, will be named Vincent’s Acres in memory of Toni’s late brother, Vincent A. Stabile. Vincent Stabile was an engineer with a master’s degree from Columbia University and an honorary doctorate from Pratt Institute. After serving as a naval officer in World War II, Mr. Stabile founded Industrial Retaining Ring Co. His hands-on involvement and basic patent on the “Dispensing of Retaining Rings” were largely responsible for the rapid success of the business. The Stabile patent simplified the handling and application of retaining rings – industrial fasteners used in innumerable applications from automobiles to household appliances. In 1994, Mr. Stabile sold the business and retired to devote his time and resources to numerous philanthropies.

One of his earliest philanthropic involvements was with Habitat for Humanity. He contributed enough for a village of houses, but without enough available land, the funds were distributed for individual homes.  Toni volunteered to do interviewing.  Now, Toni has fulfilled Vincent’s original wish to build a Habitat village in Vincent’s Acres.

As children of the Depression, the Stabiles appreciated the unique model of Habitat for Humanity requiring homeowner investment of sweat equity.  Ms. Stabile’s remarkable gift will continue to provide funding for future construction, breaking the cycle of poverty for generations to come.  Asked for a comment, Ms. Stabile said she would like to repeat what Vincent wrote while he was working with Habitat.  He wrote: “I have the utmost respect for the work Habitat for Humanity is doing. I’m proud to be associated with Habitat.”

Habitat for Humanity of Collier County is one of the oldest and largest producing affiliates of the international ministry. With more than 1,400 homes in Collier County, the local affiliate has built an average of 110 homes a year for the past 10 years. An average of ten families apply for each Habitat home built in Collier County. If you would like to know more about Habitat for Humanity of Collier County and learn how you can help build hope, please visit our website at www.HabitatCollier.com or call 239-775-0036. Find us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/HabitatCollier.

Habitat for Humanity of Collier County has been serving families since April 1978 and has built more than 1,400 homes to date. It is one of the oldest and most successful affiliates of Habitat for Humanity International, which was organized in Americus, GA in 1976. Locally, a small, professional staff manages the general programs with assistance from a Board of Directors made up of men and women in Collier County who volunteer their time to Habitat for Humanity. To make a donation, volunteer or learn more about Habitat for Humanity of Collier County call (239) 775-0036 or visit www.habitatcollier.org.