July CEO Blog

“Summertime is ‘now’ time. Spring and winter look ahead, autumn looks back, but summer is most at home in the here and now.”

– Marv and Nancy Hiles, An Almanac for the Soul

It is hard to believe it is already the middle of summer. Just a few weeks ago, we celebrated the achievements and promises of our community’s young people with the National Teacher of the Year, Mr. Kurt Russell, at our Annual Meeting. Be sure to check out the photos of this fabulous event here. My heart is full of the inspiration and generosity that was on full display from our Lorain County community. From the members of our Youth Fund that greeted guests to the non-profits and educational organizations that shared their resources and information to all of you who joined us, we are very grateful to you all.

A highlight of our Annual Meeting was the announcement of the largest grant in the Foundation’s history, a $1M grant to support the Lorain County Crisis Continuum to the Mental Health, Addiction, and Recovery Services Board (MHARS Board). This significant grant is symbolic of what we can achieve collectively in Lorain County when donors and businesses create a legacy by establishing a fund at the Community Foundation or contribute to an established fund that resonates with them. With your continued and growing support, the Foundation can make more of these significant grants. Please reach out to me if you are interested in learning how you can be a part of impactful and transformative giving.

Our celebration of our young people continued after our Annual Meeting when we hosted a gathering to honor our 2022-23 scholarship recipients. This event is always refreshing, providing an opportunity to truly connect with and hear from our youth. Their enthusiasm for the next chapter in their lives is full of anticipation and hope, and it is infectious. I also had the opportunity to attend the International Festival Breakfast with our Hispanic Fund President Eileen Torres in June. Congratulations to all the Princesses, and a special congratulations to the Mexican Princess Karen Gallegos, who was crowned as the 2022 Queen.

One of those impressive students is Alissa Van Dress. Alissa is a scholarship recipient of the Joann Manley Scholarship Fund for Amherst Schools and a 2022 Toni Morrison Scholar. At our celebration, Alissa shared her involvement in the upcoming production of Shrek the Musical at Lorain Community Music Theatre, where she is a volunteer. She invited us all to attend the show. These moments of connection are so vital to us all. At our Annual Meeting, I shared the many ways the Community Foundation can impact the lives of the young people in our community. But without a doubt, these young people leave a lasting impact on all of us as much as we do with them. Please consider becoming a mentor or donating to one of the many scholarship funds at the Community Foundation. Your support can help make a difference in a young person’s life trajectory.

If you are seeking community connections, the upcoming Neighbor Night on July 21st is a great opportunity to do so. Please feel free to join your neighbor, meet a new neighbor, or engage directly with our neighborhood initiatives.

Finally, we are just TWO months away from our 3rd Annual Connect to a Cause! I am thrilled to share that 74 local non-profits are participating, and they need your support. For many organizations, Connect to a Cause is their only fundraising event of the year. With rising prices and growing need, our incredible community of non-profits needs our generosity more than ever. Please stay tuned for more information and details to come on our social media channels and spread the word! I have no doubt that our community will make this Connect to a Cause the most successful one yet.

Be sure to take advantage of the gift of ‘now’ time that these beautiful summer days provide, and I hope to see you soon.

Be well,