Starke County


News & Events

Cheryl Orkis and Sarah Origer present the students with the scholarships.
Sarah Hughes accepts the LaVergne M. Brown and Lois L Spenner Educational Scholarship.

Hamlet, Indiana – More than $32,000 and 35 scholarships were awarded to 24 outstanding students through the Starke County Community Foundation (SCCF) this year. In addition, the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship will provide $137,042 for four Lilly Scholars attending college this year. The 2017 recipient of this award is Joshua Krsek.

A celebration of students was held at the James R. Hardesty Hamlet/Davis Twp. Fire Station and Community Building on Tuesday, June 13 in Hamlet. The reception provided an opportunity for scholars to meet and thank the donors who made their scholarships possible.

Sarah Origer, Director of Development for the Starke County Community Foundation, hosted the annual event that honors the accomplishments of local students and acknowledges the many people who have invested in the future of Starke County through scholarships created within the Community Foundation.

“We at the Community Foundation were so impressed with this year’s scholarship recipients,” said Origer. “We are happy that, thanks to our donors, we are able to help Starke County students pursue their goals. We look forward to seeing what they will accomplish during their college careers.”

The event also provided an opportunity for donors and recipients to receive an update on SCCF news.

This year’s recipients include: 

  • Alyssa Amidei: James and Carris Lucas Scholarship, Dorothy Johnson Shei Scholarship, Robert O. and Doris E. Winters Scholarship Fund
  • Mason Awald: Clarence Lawrence Memorial Scholarship
  • Sarah Berg: Steve L. Toth and Donna M. Toth Family Fund Scholarship
  • Madison Brown (renewal): Starke Memorial Hospital and Medical Staff Scholarship
  • Sarah Coad (renewal): Winifred J. Simpkins Spirit of Nursing Scholarship Fund, Starke Memorial Auxiliary Scholarship
  • Nickolaus Collins: Knox VWF post 748 Auxiliary
  • Tara Conley: Hamblin Scholarship in Honor Of Eleanor G. Hamblin, Starke Memorial Hospital and Medical Staff Scholarship, Robert O. and Doris E. Winters Scholarship Fund
  • Elizabeth Griffith: James and Carris Lucas Scholarship, Robert O. and Doris E. Winters Scholarship Fund
  • Corey Hackler: James and Carris Lucas Scholarship, Runkle Family Scholarship, Robert O. and Doris E. Winters Scholarship Fund
  • Noelle Heise: Knox VWF post 748 Auxiliary
  • Sarah Hopkins: Nella Kersting Memorial Scholarship
  • Marlaina Hounshell: Winifred J. Simpkins Spirit of Nursing Scholarship Fund
  • Nathan Hughes: Richard H. Gumz Agricultural Scholarship, 1897 Charley Vorm Memorial Scholarship
  • Sara Hughes: Lavergne M. Brown and Lois L. Spenner Educational Scholarship
  • Alyssa Hutchinson: Helen and Ware Edgar Scholarship Fund
  • Taylor Kinney: Knox VWF post 748 Auxiliary
  • Amanda Krzyzanowski: Starke Memorial Hospital and Medical Staff Scholarship
  • Deanna MacMillan: Carl and Josephine Wozniak Scholarship
  • Ashlyn Mosher: Starke Memorial Auxiliary Scholarship, 1897 Charley Vorm Memorial Scholarship
  • Faith Rowe: Ed Hasneral/WKVI Scholarship Fund
  • Morgan Schumacher: 1897 Charley Vorm Memorial Scholarship, Jerry Scherf Scholarship
  • Drew Shidler (renewal): Altman Family Scholarship
  • Emily Wenglarz: Clarence Lawrence Memorial Scholarship
  • Joshua Krsek: Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship

Community Foundation Celebrates 20 Years and 6 million in Grants

Dr. Abigail C. Nichols, Donna Toth, and Wade Nichols.

Knox, Ind. - The Starke County Community Foundation (SCCF) held its 20th anniversary celebration and annual Community Impact Reception on October 27th in Knox.
Since inception, the Community Foundation has awarded more than $6 million in grants and scholarships. The SCCF now has over $8.39 million in assets.

The evening allowed guests to reminisce and reflect on the impact that the SCCF has made over the past 20 years—an impact of $6 million through 1,766 grants to Starke County non-profits, 326 scholarships to Starke County students, and 35 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars.

The SCCF also celebrated the organizations that received grants this year. In total, more than $225,000 in grants and scholarships have been awarded by the SCCF in 2016.

The founders of the SCCF were Frank Alan, June Binkley, Cheryle Ferch, Cherry Gumz, Jim Hardesty, Barbara McLaughlin, and Arlowa Vorm. Three of the seven original founders of the SCCF attended the event and were presented with awards. These included Alan, Gumz, and McLaughlin. Family members of founders who have passed away accepted the awards for their loved ones.

Barbara and Marvin McLaughlin

The 2nd annual James R. Hardesty Leadership in Philanthropy Award was also presented to the local Tri Kappa chapter for the outstanding work they do in the community. The award was created in honor of SCCF founder, generous donor, and beloved friend, James “Jim” Hardesty. Over the past 54 years, the local Tri Kappa chapter has awarded more than $250,000 in scholarships and awards to graduating seniors, in addition to other philanthropic support they provide to Starke County.

The Longest Serving Volunteer Award was given to Brad Lawrence. Lawrence began serving on the SCCF board in 1999. He served as President of both the SCCF and the Northern Indiana Community Foundation (NICF). He served 12 years, the most allowed by the NICF bylaws, and then he continued to volunteer as an advisor to the board. In January, he returned to the SCCF board as Vice President.

“It was so humbling to have a room full of people who care so deeply for Starke County,” said Sarah Origer, SCCF Director of Development. “None of this would be possible if it weren’t for the contributions of our donors, board members, and staff, as well as the grantees who put grant dollars to good use.”

The following organizations were awarded grants: Center for Workforce Innovations, $600; Community Services of Starke County, $3,500; The Crossing, $3,200; Fletcher Cemetery Association, $700; Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum, $1,000; Kid’s Closet, $2,000; North Judson-San Pierre School Corporation, $1,000; Psi Iota Xi, $2,000; Starke County ABATE, $2,000; Starke County Bicentennial Bison, $1,000; Starke County Preschool Scholarship Program, $7,500; Starke County Youth Club, $3,800.

Frank Alan and Jennifer Gappa

At the start of the event, guests visited tables that represented the SCCF’s pillars of giving. When guests visited every table, their names were entered into a drawing for $100 to be put into the fund of their choice. The winner of the drawing was Sandy Kersting-Rudd, who allocated the dollars to the Starke United Community Fund.

The board of the SCCF thanked all of those who made this possible and look forward to the next twenty years of bettering the quality of life in Starke County.
The Starke County Community Foundation is an affiliate of the Northern Indiana Community Foundation, Inc., a 501 (c) (3) public trust. The mission of the Community Foundation is to improve the quality of life in our communities by assisting donors in fulfilling their charitable wishes. We do this by building endowment funds for our communities with contributions, both large and small.

For more information, contact the Northern Indiana Community Foundation toll free at 877-432-6423, or Sarah Origer at the Starke County Community Foundation at 574-772-3665.

The SCCF’s 20th Anniversary Series
Volume 19 – November 30, 2016

Leaving a Legacy

Over the past twenty years, the Starke County Community Foundation (SCCF) has provided an opportunity for individuals to leave a legacy in their communities. This legacy reflects the individuals’ spirit of giving and their passion for causes and charitable organizations in Starke County. 

Theodore Roosevelt said, “What a man does for himself dies with him. What a man does for his community lives long after he’s gone.”

Many generous individuals have left bequests to the SCCF and have therefore left something that will live on forever, endlessly impacting the community and enhancing the quality of life in Starke County. Contributions to the SCCF are immeasurable.

Planned giving can enable donors to make more significant gifts to yield the biggest impact on the community. Planned gifts can be made in many different ways.

Giving to the SCCF through a will is one of the easiest ways to make a gift. Donors may also name the SCCF as the beneficiary of IRA assets, which allows the donor to avoid estate and income taxes. The SCCF keeps 100 percent of the IRA assets and applies them to the charitable purpose or organization the donor chooses.
Life insurance is another great way to make a charitable gift to the SCCF. The donor can deduct the replacement value of the policy, and some donors can increase the size of their gift by purchasing a life insurance policy and naming the SCCF as owner and beneficiary.

Finally, donors can make a planned gift through a Charitable Remainder Trust, Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust (CRAT), Charitable Remainder Unitrust (CRUT), or Charitable Lead Trust (CLT). These types of gifts allow a donor to irrevocably transfer assets into a trust which pays income to the donor or other beneficiaries during their lifetimes. The remainder then goes to a qualified nonprofit of the donor’s choice or to the donor’s named beneficiaries.

It is never too early to think about planned giving. This is an opportunity for donors to know that their dollars will never be spent but will instead generate income forever to provide sustainability for organizations the donor cares about or to provide assistance for the various needs of the community.

The SCCF honors the legacies that have been established with the SCCF so far. As we have discussed throughout this series, gifts to the SCCF have made such a tremendous impact on Starke County already, and they will continue to do so forever! Through our pillars of giving, we are sure to touch every area of need in Starke County. Our various types of funds enable donors to fulfill their individual charitable wishes. 

The past twenty years have yielded remarkable results. In total, the SCCF has awarded $3,003,539.20 in grants to charitable organizations, $2,887,305 in scholarships, and has established 121 funds. We are so thankful to our donors and supporters, as well as to the charitable organizations and individuals in Starke County who have put their grant and scholarship dollars to great use. 

We hope that you will consider making a planned gift to the SCCF in order to become a part of something strong, immeasurable, and ever-lasting— an organization which will honor your legacy and ensure that your contribution will forever enhance the quality of life in Starke County.

Read all past editions!

Volume 1 – July 25, 2016 Volume 2 – August 1, 2016
The Starke County Community Foundation & the Lilly Endowment Inc.
Volume 3 – August 8, 2016
History of SCCF Part I
Volume 4 – August 17, 2016
History of SCCF Part II
Volume 5 – August 24, 2016
History of SCCF Part III
Volume 6 – August 31, 2016
How the SCCF Works
Volume 7 – September 7, 2016
The SCCF Supports Arts and Culture
Volume 8 – September 14, 2016
The SCCF Supports Community Development
Volume 9 – September 21, 2016
Creating a Healthy Community
Volume 10 – September 28, 2016
A Beautiful Community
Volume 11 – October 5, 2016
Investing in our Future
Volume 12 – October 12, 2016
Agency Funds
Volume 13 – October 19, 2016
It's Your Choice
Volume 14 – October 26, 2016
Starke County Students Reach for the Stars!
Volume 15 – November 2, 2016
Fulfilling Charitable Wishes
Volume 16 – November 9, 2016
Reaching Every Area of Need
Volume 17 – November 16, 2016
Field of Interest Funds and Special Funds
Volume 18 – November 23, 2016
Volume 19 – November 30, 2016
Leaving a Legacy