Hope Abelson, originally Hope Altman, was born September 21, 1910 in Chicago, Illinois. She spent her childhood and career devoted to the arts, first as an artist, and later as a producer and arts philanthropist. Notably, Abelson helped fund the burgeoning theatre scene in Chicago through support of institutions like Victory Gardens Theater, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, and Court Theatre (Chicago). Abelson had two children with husband Lester Abelson, Stuart and Katherine. She died in 2006, and her estate funds the Lester and Hope Abelson Fund for the Performing Arts.