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For Women, Forever Campaign

The Women's Endowment Fund's mission is to improve life for women and girls now and forever. By supporting "For Women, Forever," you can do the same.

“For Women, Forever” is an ambitious campaign to raise $2.013 million for the health, safety and economic well-being of women and girls in Summit County – both now and forever. It was an initiative of the Women’s Endowment Fund of Akron Community Foundation to mark its 20th anniversary in 2013.

Named after the Women’s Endowment Fund’s signature annual event, “For Women, Forever” kicked off in March 2012 with generous gifts from co-chairs Dianne Newman and Karen Lefton; fund founders like Kathryn Hunter; board officers like Tracy Carter and Kathy Booth; philanthropists like David and Cheryl Venarge and Roger and Judy Read; and businesses like GOJO Industries and the J.M. Smucker Company, who together dedicated nearly $1.2 million to the cause of helping women and girls. Since then, more than 200 people – including the entire Women’s Endowment Fund board – have supported the campaign with gifts of all kinds, including tax-smart gifts like cash and stock; planned gifts such as bequests, charitable gift annuities and life insurance policies; charitable IRA transfers; and multi-year pledges. In fact, more than 50 donors gave $10,000 or more – a testament to our community’s commitment to women and girls. 

WEF marks anniversary,
Women’s History Month 
with $2.013 million

The Women’s Endowment Fund’s 20th anniversary celebration got even bigger when GAR Foundation announced a last-dollar grant to finish out the “For Women, Forever” campaign. See the video.

An unprecedented achievement

On March 13, 2013 – less than one year after the endowment campaign was publicly launched – co-chair Karen Lefton made a momentous announcement at the fund’s 20th anniversary celebration. In front of nearly 400 supporters, she proudly declared the Women’s Endowment Fund had capped off the campaign with a last-dollar grant from GAR Foundation and achieved its goal of raising $2.013 million for women and girls by 2013. 

“On behalf of the thousands of women and girls in our community who will benefit forever, I thank you from the bottom of my heart,” she told the cheering crowd. “Your generosity is both awesome and inspiring.”

Your gift made permanent

Raising $2.013 million is only the beginning. “For Women, Forever” is a commitment to investing in our collective future forever. By continuing to support the Women’s Endowment Fund, your gifts will help women and girls today and for generations to come. Gifts of all kinds and sizes are grown through the power of endowment. From those gifts, grants are given to targeted, impactful programs that empower women and girls financially; prevent and rescue women and girls from violence; and improve the physical, mental and emotional health of women and their families. To date, those grants total nearly $850,000. With your help, we can do so much more.

Tribute to honorary chair Kathryn Hunter

In memory of Kathryn Hunter's service to the women of Greater Akron and the Women's Endowment Fund, "For Women, Forever" co-chair Karen Lefton wrote a heartfelt tribute in the Akron Beacon Journal. 
Read More »

Prudent oversight

The Women’s Endowment Fund’s assets are managed by Akron Community Foundation according to a long-term investment policy. This ensures they will be used prudently for years to come. Through this partnership, the fund shares in the community foundation’s grant-making expertise and local nonprofit knowledge gained over the organization’s 60-year history.

We need you

Join the hundreds of other “For Women, Forever” supporters in making a gift that will impact the lives of women and girls for years to come. Give now or make a pledge. 

To make a pledge, contact Margaret Medzie, vice president and chief development officer. Or, to transfer stock, mutual funds or other appreciated assets, contact Akron Community Foundation Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Steve Schloenbach.