Publix heiress gave ‘lion’s share’ of money for Jan. 6 rally before Capitol riots, newspaper reports

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the heiress to the Publix Supermarket chain contributed about $300,000 to former President Donald Trump's rally that preceded the Jan. 6 riot on the Capitol. (WPLG)

PEMBROKE PARK, Fla. – Publix supermarket heiress Julie Jenkins Fancelli contributed funding for former President Donald Trump’s rally just previous to the riot on the U.S. Capitol, according to the The Wall Street Journal.

Jenkins Fancelli gave about $300,000 to the Jan. 6 event through a former fundraising representative for Trump’s campaign, the newspaper reported Saturday.

“Her money paid for the lion’s share of the roughly $500,000 rally at the Ellipse where Mr. Trump spoke,” according to the newspaper.

The rally was arranged and funded by a small group, which included far-right radio host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. WSJ said it was Jones who arranged for Jenkins Fancelli, a prominent donor to the Trump campaign, to commit the hundreds of thousands of dollars. The money was acquired through a top fundraising official for the former president’s campaign, according to organizers.

Fancelli is the daughter of Publix founder George W. Jenkins, who died in 1996. He founded the food store in 1930 in Winter Haven, Fla. In 1972, she married Mauro Adolfo Dino Fancelli of Florence, Italy, where the couple live.

The Lakeland, Fla., native met her husband during a study abroad year in Italy with the University of Florida. The Lakeland Ledger has reported that the Fancellis spend most of their time in Florence and holidays and winter months in Lakeland.

The company reported that in 2019 its retail sales reached $38.1 billion. The supermarket chain has 1,265 stores in the southeast with 817 of those stores in Florida.

About the Author:

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true-crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local