Staff

 

Laura Heintzelman
Executive Director
(231) 723-7269

Latest

May 31, 2017

 

manistee county community foundation receives $15 million estate gift 

MANISTEE, Mich. – May 31, 2017 – The Manistee County Community Foundation (MCCF) has received a $15 million estate gift from Forest R. Minger, Jr.  The landmark gift created two new endowment funds which will greatly benefit the community for years to come.   

FRM Jr red2The Minger Family Endowment Scholarship Fund was established with $2M of the estate gift and will provide scholarships for Manistee County students to attend colleges and universities.  Minger had previously established the Manistee County Scholarship Fund at the Foundation during his lifetime, the assets of which have now been added to this new permanent fund.    

The donor also directed $13 million to a second endowment, the Minger Family Endowment Fund, to help maintain and improve existing recreational programs and facilities within Manistee County.  The fund may also provide support for new programs, facilities and equipment. 

The MCCF Board of Directors is in the process of completing a new strategic plan and developing grantmaking strategies to ensure the two new funds will achieve maximum impact for the community.  It is anticipated that details related to the grant application guidelines will be announced in early 2018.

Forest R. Minger, Jr.’s lifelong love for the Manistee area began when he first visited the community as a youth with his family.  Even when working as a chemist for Dow Chemical, the Midland, Michigan, native was determined to spend every possible minute of his free time fishing and hunting in Manistee County.  Minger had previously shared that he had received much joy from his time spent recreating in the area and wanted to give back.  He also believed that, while Manistee County has a wealth of natural resources, his gift could provide opportunities that may not otherwise be available in a small community.  He felt that he could maximize his impact by leaving his gift to the Manistee County Community Foundation.

“We are deeply grateful to Mr. Minger for his remarkable act of philanthropy and excited about the profound impact that his gift will surely have on Manistee County’s future,” said Laura Heintzelman, President & CEO of the MCCF.  “This is a transformational gift for the foundation and our community.”

Community foundations have a long and rich history of receiving and administering permanent funds in support of their communities.  Rob Collier, President & CEO of the Council of Michigan Foundations shared, “This incredible gift is a perfect example of why community foundations exist.  Without the foresight of the founding board and the leadership that has carried the Manistee County Community Foundation forward over the past 30 years, this may have been a missed opportunity for Manistee County.  We congratulate the Foundation and the community on this momentous gift and look forward to following its impact.” 

The MCCF will continue to develop its planned giving program during 2017 to help mark its 30th Anniversary.  “We are deeply honored that Mr. Minger entrusted the Foundation with carrying forward his legacy,” offered Brad Hopwood, chairman of the MCCF Board of Directors.  “It is our hope that others who care about Manistee County will also consider leaving a gift to the Foundation through their will or estate to help ensure a vibrant community for future generations.” 

While this gift dramatically increases the MCCF’s ability to support the pursuit of postsecondary education and provide recreational opportunities, gaps remain in its ability to respond to a broader array of community needs.  The Foundation remains focused on continuing to grow its endowment to provide resources for all areas of life in Manistee County for years to come.

About the Manistee County Community Foundation

The Manistee County Community Foundation (MCCF), established in 1987, is a public charity and tax-exempt nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in the Manistee County region – today and in the future.  Governed by a diverse Board of Directors comprised of community leaders from across Manistee County, the foundation provides leadership to achieve community change, makes grants that address local needs, and builds community endowment. For more information, visit manisteefoundation.org.

###

Manistee County Community Foundation’s limitless fund challenge To Result in $1.4M endowment and greater impact

MANISTEE, Mich. – Feb. 21st, 2017 – The Manistee County Community Foundation (MCCF) met and surpassed a $500,000 challenge made by an anonymous donor to amplify the impact of the foundation.  Qualifying gifts and pledges to the Limitless Fund along with donor’s match will increase the foundation’s unrestricted assets more than five-fold and generate additional monies available for grants.

The anonymous donor wanted to help the MCCF grow its ability to meet the ever-changing needs of the community by building its unrestricted endowment and offered a $500,000 challenge gift if the organization could raise an equal amount in cash and multi-year pledges (up to three years) by Dec. 31, 2016.  After the challenge was met last August with several months to spare, the donor offered an additional dollar-for-dollar match up to $500,000 under the same terms.  In total $716,513 was raised in cash gifts and three-year pledges eligible to be matched 1:1 resulting in $1,433,026 to be contributed to the Limitless Fund by the end of 2018. 

“We are gratified by the community’s response to the Limitless Fund Challenge and deeply thankful to our donors for their support,” shared Laura Heintzelman, executive director of the Manistee County Community Foundation.  “We extend a very special appreciation to our anonymous donor who recognized the unmet needs in Manistee County and the pivotal role that the Foundation can play in addressing those needs for many years to come.  Thanks to everyone’s generosity we will be able to serve Manistee County at a new level.”

Heintzelman explained that the Limitless Fund is unique in the Foundation’s roster of nearly 100 funds because it is not restricted for a specific purpose.  Thus, the permanent endowment can be used to strategically address the ever-changing needs of Manistee County at the discretion of the Foundation’s Board of Directors. 

“We are honored to be entrusted with these special gifts and thank our donors for their generosity and confidence in the Foundation.  We take our job as stewards of the Foundation’s assets very seriously and the Board is carefully planning how to maximize the impact of these new resources,” said Brad Hopwood, Manistee County Community Foundation Board President.

It is anticipated that the first grant cycle from the Limitless Fund will be announced in 2018 and that monies available for granting will steadily increase as the Limitless Fund becomes fully funded and investment earnings are generated.  The Manistee County Community Foundation Board of Directors is in the process of establishing grantmaking priorities as part of a new strategic plan to be completed by the end of 2017. 

A list of supporters of the Foundation’s Limitless Fund Challenge may be viewed on the Foundation’s website at www.manisteefoundation.org.

About the Manistee County Community Foundation

The Manistee County Community Foundation (MCCF) is a tax-exempt nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in the Manistee County region – today and in the future.  Established in 1987, the foundation provides leadership to achieve community change, makes grants that address local needs, and builds community endowment. For more information, visit manisteefoundation.org.

###

MANISTEE COUNTY COMMUNITY FOundation receives single largest gift in its history; FUNDS WOULD GENERATE $80k MORE ANNUALLY FOR COMMUNITY REQUESTS

MANISTEE, Mich. – Sept. 14, 2016 – A generous philanthropist has provided an opportunity for the Manistee County Community Foundation (MCCF) to support Manistee County like never before – and the foundation needs help from everyone who cares about the community to make it happen.

The MCCF today announced that it has boosted its unrestricted endowment by $1 million after matching a $500,000 challenge gift from an anonymous donor – the single largest gift in its history.  In response to MCCF’s success, the donor has offered to continue matching gifts up to an additional $500,000 through the end of the year.  If the additional match is secured, the endowment would generate approximately $80,000 annually in new unrestricted grant monies available to support area needs.

“We are deeply grateful to this anonymous donor whose generosity also encouraged others to help us reach this historic milestone, as well as the contributors who enabled us to meet the challenge,” said MCCF Executive Director Laura Heintzelman. “We are thrilled that this generous donor has now doubled the match so we can serve Manistee County at a new level. The potential impact on our community is truly limitless if we can meet this challenge, and we urge all those who love Manistee County to support this important opportunity with a donation that will double in value. There has never been a better time to give to MCCF.”

The donor wanted to help the MCCF grow its impact and ability to meet the ever-changing needs of the community by building its unrestricted endowment and offered a $500,000 challenge gift if the organization could raise an equal amount in cash and multi-year pledges up to three years by Dec. 31, 2016.  After the challenge was met with several months to spare, the donor offered an additional dollar-for-dollar match up to $500,000 under the same terms.  If the full challenge and match amount of $2 million is raised, it would increase the foundation’s assets of $4 million by 50 percent and its unrestricted assets eightfold.

“A gift of this size and magnitude to a community foundation is something we don’t see every day, particularly in rural Michigan regions like Manistee County,” said Rob Collier, president and CEO of the Council of Michigan Foundations. “This is a meaningful opportunity for the Manistee County community to help ensure its future and create a place where everyone can thrive.”

While the MCCF administers 90 funds, the majority of the foundation’s assets are designated for specific purposes as directed by the donors.  Because the foundation has only been able to meet a fraction of funding requests through its unrestricted endowment, the short- and long-term impact of this challenge gift has the potential to be vast.

“We believe there are many more funding requests not being submitted to the MCCF due to our limited unrestricted funds,” said Heintzelman. “Unrestricted funds are critical to our county, as they allow the foundation to support diverse needs as basic as food, housing and education – all essential for citizens of Manistee County. This challenge gift would exponentially boost our unrestricted assets so we have resources and flexibility to meet Manistee County’s emerging needs and support funding gaps like never before.”

Those interested in supporting the match challenge can make a donation to the Limitless Fund, the name of the foundation’s unrestricted endowment. More information is available at manisteefoundation.org/limitless or by calling (231) 723-7269. Contributions are tax deductible, and multi-year pledges up to three years are eligible as long as the intended commitment is made by Dec. 31, 2016.  

The MCCF is the only entity serving Manistee County that impacts all aspects of the community including youth, education, the arts, environment, recreation, human services, community and economic development, and more. The MCCF has awarded $1.5 million in grants over its history, and in the last 10 years, it has grown its assets from $1.5 million to almost $4 million. In addition to administering more than 90 funds and awarding grants, the foundation serves as a catalyst to lead change in the community. For example, the Foundation spearheaded the county’s first visioning effort, Envision Manistee County; plays a key role in the Explore the Shores program to make the county’s waters accessible to all people; and administers Launch Manistee, a cradle-to-career educational initiative aimed at ensuring the success of Manistee County students.  

About the Manistee County Community Foundation

The Manistee County Community Foundation (MCCF) is a tax-exempt nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in the Manistee County region – today and in the future.  Established in 1987, the foundation provides leadership to achieve community change, makes grants that address local needs, and builds community endowment. For more information, visit manisteefoundation.org.

###