February 11, 2016 – 2016 ushered in a new year and a new Youth Philanthropy Initiative for Tucker Community Foundation with Sandy Frank of the TCF Development Office leading the charge. Having kicked off the program with a Write-to-Win contest deemed a “rousing success”; Sandy is now working with Penelope’s Kids, a group of youth volunteers whose ages range from 7-12. The group will develop a service project, explore the community’s needs and resources, and get first-hand experience on awarding a grant. With that in mind, it seems fitting for this week’s Common Threads to feature TCF endowments that benefit youth.
One of the Foundation’s first endowments, the Elliott Kepler and Alice Mae Degler Smith Fund was established in 1991 as a field of interest fund. At the time, Mrs. Smith wrote a letter that identified their support of youth activities that included the Salvation Army Summer Camp for children, 4-H camp scholarships, Youth Leadership Camp scholarships and other charitable purposes.
Elliott Kepler Smith was a charter member of the TCF Board of Directors. He was born at Red Creek and attended Sapling Ridge – Mt. View School. He graduated from Parsons High School (’33) and earned a degree in mechanical engineering from Kent State University.
He served with the US Navy for 30 years during which time he engaged in Operation Deep Freeze and served tours of duty in both the Arctic and Antarctic with Adm. Richard E. Byrd.
Alice was reared in Hambleton, WV. She was a 1936 graduate of Parsons High School and earned a BS degree from Davis & Elkins College and a MBA from Kent State University. She served 38 months on active duty with the U.S. Women Marines during World War II.
The Parsons Kiwanis Club/J. Kenton Lambert Fund is an agency endowed fund that was established in 1992 to honor charter member J. Kenton Lambert by providing support for community projects; in particular, those having to do with youth. Lambert (1910–1995) was a lifelong resident of Parsons who served as state Kiwanis governor and all offices leading to that position. He was a 2 term West Virginia Senator. He and his younger brother, Lorren K. Lambert, were owners of Lambert Chevy-Olds for more than 40 years, and owners of Lambert Department Store. J. Kenton was a graduate of Parsons High School and West Virginia University and a veteran of the United States Navy, serving during World War II. He was also a coach and teacher at Parsons High School.
The P. J. Zickefoose Fund was established by his parents Paul and Barbara Lewis Zickefoose with memorial donations from friends and family. The fund provides skiing opportunities for Tucker and Randolph county youth who otherwise could not financially participate in this sport. A 1989 graduate of Elkins High School, Zickefoose majored in biology at Fairmont State College, completed West Virginia University Dental School and met the rural residency requirement by working in Davis with the late Dr. Tom Patrick who arranged his hours so he could ski during the morning.
The Falling Green fund was initiated in 1996 and established in 2000 to support Tucker County community based youth organizations. Strong consideration is given to 4-H leadership programs and/or youth equestrian activities. The fund was established to honor the lives of LaVerna and Richard T. White, Sr. of Mt. Airy Maryland. The name Falling Green originated with the first farm purchased by the White’s in 1949, the Brooke Farm of Olney, Maryland, a historic Montgomery County landmark.
The Thomas P. Patrick, DDS Fund provides support for high adventure treks of the Canaan Valley / Davis / Thomas Boy Scout Troop 96. The fund was established with a life insurance bequest made by Dr. Patrick and it continues to grow with support from family and friends. Dr. Patrick was a charter member of the TCF Board of Directors serving from 1988 until his untimely death in 2000. He served as President from 1995-2000. He is perhaps best remembered within TCF as the originator, and enthusiastic emcee, of Uncle Sam’s Birthday Party, a July 4 fund raiser that has become an annual tradition. Patrick served as Troop 96 Scoutmaster for 16 years; his 35 member troop enjoyed many high adventures under his leadership.
The Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association (former Ohio-West Virginia YMCA) Fund was established in 1993 by family and friends of the late Mavis Johnson King. The fund supports Ohio-West Virginia youth leadership programs, including YLA Camp Horseshoe, Youth in Government, and Model United Nations. A longtime resident of Greenfield, Ohio, Mavis King (1916 –1993) served as the Food Service Director of YLA Camp Horseshoe, located in Tucker County, for 15 years. On June 24, 1991, the YMCA of the United States of America recognized Mavis as An Outstanding Senior who made a difference in the lives of others.
Endowed fund donors can create a fund and take up to five years to reach the minimum funding requirement: $5,000 unrestricted, $10,000 designated or field of interest, $20,000 scholarship, and $20,000 donor-advised. Once a fund is approved, anyone can donate to it. Donors name the fund and determine the distribution guidelines and geographic area to be served by the fund. TCF manages funds that benefit eight counties: Barbour, Grant, Mineral, Preston, Pocahontas, Randolph, Tucker and Garrett County, Maryland.
Endowed funds are invested for growth and income. Income in excess of $15,500 is available for grants benefiting youth. Grant applications will be available in August. Anyone can donate any amount to any fund any time. Visit www.tuckerfoundation.net to donate online. All donations are tax deductible.
For more information how to endow a fund to benefit youth, education, or other needs in your community, contacts the Foundation Development Office at 304-259-5008. Visit us at www.facebook.com/tucker.commfound for up to date information about Tucker Community Foundation.