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Bath Community Fund celebrates growth, grants at annual meeting

“For Bath, Forever” campaign co-chairs Brad and Amy Bowers and Lisa and Thom Mandel celebrate Bath Community Fund’s fourth annual meeting.

BATH TWP., Ohio (April 25, 2018) – On April 19, nearly 60 supporters of Bath Community Fund gathered at Hale Farm & Village to celebrate the fund’s growth and impact in the community at its fourth annual meeting.

In front of an audience of donors and community leaders, fund officials announced the endowment had grown to more than $660,000, thanks to the gifts of nearly 170 individuals, families and organizations.

“Four years ago, a group of us shared an idea for a community fund that would benefit the residents of Bath,” said Jody Miller Konstand, chair of the fund’s advisory board. “And in that short time, your generosity and the generosity of so many others in this community made it possible to fulfill our promise to give back to the community through charitable grantmaking. That’s what we celebrate tonight.”

In 2017, Bath Community Fund awarded grants totaling $14,135 to eight nonprofit organizations, bringing its cumulative grantmaking to nearly $30,000 since the fund was established at Akron Community Foundation in 2014.

Representatives from each of the grant recipients spoke about the impact of the funding on the community. Jason Klein, director of Hale Farm & Village, publicly thanked Bath Community Fund leaders for their grant to resurface walking paths on the property and improve guest mobility.

“The grant funded a project to restore the pathways in the Goldsmith Garden, which is an iconic space at Hale Farm that we use frequently in our education programs,” he said. “We serve more than 24,000 school kids each year, and without support from Bath Community Fund as well as the Bath community at large, we couldn't do what we do here.”

The meeting also included the election of Debbie McKinney, owner of Time to Spare LLC, to the Bath Community Fund Advisory Board. McKinney is a founding member of the Bath Business Association and is an active volunteer through Bath Volunteers for Service and Bath Church United Church of Christ, among many other organizations.

“As a member of the Bath community for the past 25 years, it’s an honor to serve in this important role,” McKinney said. “I am looking forward to being an integral part of raising funds to support our neighbors in need through Bath Community Fund.”

The slate of advisory board officers re-elected at the meeting included Konstand as chair, Nancy Fay as vice chair, Kathy Sidaway as secretary, and Kevin Kroskey as financial officer. Their new terms will commence July 1. Konstand also thanked outgoing board members Nadine Clar, who served on the board for four years, and Dr. Robert Hemphill, who will become an emeritus member.

The evening culminated in a challenge to help Bath Community Fund achieve its “For Bath, Forever” endowment campaign goal of raising $2.018 million by the end of Bath’s bicentennial year in 2018. An endowment of that size would enable Bath Community Fund to grant at least $100,000 to deserving nonprofits in Bath each year.

“You just heard eight examples of how our grantmaking made a difference. If $14,000 can make that much of an impact, just think what $100,000 could do,” Konstand said. “The legacy of Bath Community Fund is still to be written, but it’s our hope that the legacy will be one of pride and accomplishment in building something of value in the Bath community that is bigger than ourselves and that will live on forever.”

Co-chairing the campaign are three couples with deep roots in Bath: Dr. Tom and Mary Ann Jackson, Thom and Lisa Mandel, and Brad and Amy Bowers.

“Amy and I grew up in this community and had the benefit of being at Revere together,” said Brad Bowers. “We feel blessed to be here – just look at the organizations represented tonight. The support Bath Community Fund gives to these nonprofits is so inspiring that we couldn’t resist getting involved.”

Each of the co-chairs will be hosting an event this summer to spread the word about the endowment campaign. To receive an invitation, contact Jody Miller Konstand, advisory board chair, at 330-618-4477 or jmkmedia@msn.com. Or, learn more about Bath Community Fund at BathCommunityFund.org.

About Bath Community Fund
Established in 2014 by a group of committed Bath residents, Bath Community Fund is a permanent endowment dedicated to strengthening the Bath community for current and future generations by providing leadership, fostering collaboration and creating a legacy of charitable giving. The fund is committed to responding to community needs, helping the less fortunate, supporting local nonprofits, and reinforcing and preserving Bath’s historical and environmental legacy. Since its inception, the fund has raised more than $660,000 while reinvesting $28,635 into the Bath community. The fund is currently embarking on the “For Bath, Forever” endowment campaign to raise $2.018 million by the end of Bath’s bicentennial year in 2018. For more information, visit www.BathCommunityFund.org or contact Jody Miller Konstand, advisory board chair, at 330-618-4477 or jmkmedia@msn.com.

About Akron Community Foundation
Celebrating 62 years of building community philanthropy, Akron Community Foundation embraces and enhances the work of charitable people who make a permanent commitment to the good of the community. In 1955, a $1 million bequest from the estate of Edwin Shaw established the community foundation. As of Dec. 31, 2017, it is a philanthropic endowment of more than $222 million with a growing family of more than 600 funds established by charitable people and organizations from all walks of life. The community foundation and its funds welcome gifts of all kinds, including cash, bequests, stock, real estate, life insurance and retirement assets, just to name a few. To date, the community foundation’s funds have awarded more than $150 million in grants to qualified nonprofit organizations. For more information about Akron Community Foundation or to learn more about creating your own charitable fund, call 330-376-8522 or visit www.akroncf.org.