Beaver County Foundation List of Established Funds
General Purpose Funds
Benjamin Franklin Fund
Established through the Will of Benjamin Franklin with a bequest of $25,000 in 1992, this fund provides annual awards that recognize entrepreneurial activities in Beaver County. The fund is used to fund the Ben Franklin Award. Recipients often select a local organization to receive an award in their honor.
Established by the board of directors of the foundation with annual contributions, this fund will eventually provide for general purpose grants. This is a long-term fund maintained by small contributions of $100 annually from the foundation board. On July 22, 2010 the foundation received a gift in the amount of $80,323.53 following the death of Judge J. Q. Salmon. In the 1960s a free Healthfair was held in Beaver County, organized by businessman Edward Sahli, Sr. The Healthfair was free, but many businesses and individuals contributed to the event. After Mr. Sahli’s passing in 1989, Judge Salmon acquired custody of the funds in the name of the Beaver County Foundation. Judge Salmon died on September 30, 2009 at the age of 102. The fund was then transferred to the current Beaver County Foundation.
The Ambridge Scholarship Fund was formed by a group of alumni who planned a 50’s class reunion. Each year awards are made to a group of 10 to 15 graduates of Ambridge High School.
The Ambridge High School Football Alumni Fund scholarship is given to an Ambridge football player who has distinguished academically, athletically and in leadership.
The Irving and Trude Bennett Foundation was established by Dr. Irving and Trude Bennett, for the benefit of students in the Big Beaver Falls School District, with an initial gift of $80,000. The award is an annual grant for scholarships and special grants to be used for academic incentives and faculty academies.
The Robert Wayne and Alda Jane Cole Scholarship Fund was created by Mr. Cole with a gift of $25,000 in memory of his wife. An award of $1,500 is given annually. The award is for graduating senior of Hopewell High School.
The Al Troiano Scholarship Fund was created by the family and friends of Al Troiano the former Superintendent of Western Beaver School District who passed away in 2001. The initial gift was in the amount of $5,400.
The Fred “Coach” Latherow Scholarship Fund was established by the family and friend of Fred Latherow, long time coach at Western Beaver High School. For more than 30 years “coach” Latherow serves as a mentor, counselor and friend to hundreds of Western Beaver students. An annual award of $750 is made to a student athlete from western beaver who demonstrates leadership, scholarship and character.
The Ellwood City High School Class of 1957 Scholarship Fund. The fund was established in 2007 by contributions from graduates of the Ellwood High School Class of 1957. It is to be used to grant one or more scholarships to Ellwood High School or its successor to graduating seniors with preference given to students pursuing a four-year degree with professional training to follow.
The Stanley Polikowski Scholarship Trust was established through a bequest from Stanley Polikowski for students graduating from the Ambridge Area High School. The Ambridge School District transferred the bequest of $413,000, effective August 21, 2002, to the Beaver County Foundation which serves as the custodian and administrator of the fund. Mr. Polikowski was the former owner and operator of the Baden Hotel and had a love of education.
The Laree Riley Scholarship Fund was created by her children with a contribution of $5,000 in 2003, in recognition of her many years of service to the Big Beaver Falls School District as a teacher, mentor, friend, guidance counselor and assistant principal. Awards are made annually to students of Big Beaver Falls High School.
The Catherine Malesh-Vageonis Scholarship Fund was established by the family and friends of Catherine Malesh-Vageonis with an initial contribution of $5,000 in July of 2004. The scholarship fund is to be used to help support nursing education with preference being given to students from Aliquippa, Ambridge, Center and Hopewell high schools.
The John Knobloch Fund was established by Beaver Resident, John J. Knobloch on October 10, 2005 with gifts of stock that totaled $31,179.30. John Knobloch served as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for the former Babcock and Wilcox Company in Beaver Falls. The scholarship fund is to be used to provide financial assistance to students seeking to enter the fields of accounting, business, economics and finance with preference given to students from school districts who do not have scholarship funds with the Beaver County Foundation.
The John and Theresa Ditz Wyllie Scholarship Fund was established on September 15, 2008 with a contribution of $25,000. John Wyllie was the woman’s basketball coach at Ambridge High School and his wife Theresa was the sponsor and coach of the cheerleading squad. Their scholarship fund is to be used to make awards to female athletes which will include cheerleaders.
The Richard Zana Memorial Scholarship Fund was created by the family and former students of Richard Zana, the former director of music at Ambridge High School. Mr. Zana died in 2008. The award is given to any Beaver County High School student who has excelled in music.
The Philip H. Inman Excellence in Choral Conducting Arts Scholarship Fund was established in 2010 by the Beaver Valley Choral Society in recognition of Mr. Philip H. Inman, the director of the choral society. Mr. Inman is a former music educator at Rochester High School. Scholarships are awarded to those Beaver County area students pursuing conducting education, or music performance at the following schools, Geneva College, Grove City College, Westminster College, Duquesne University or Carnegie Mellon University.
The Dr. Nick Trombetta Scholarship Fund was established in 2010 by the National Network of Digital Schools in honor of Nick Trombetta, Ed.D. Dr. Tombetta is a pioneer in developing cyber school education and the CEO of The Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School. This scholarship is awarded to a graduate of the Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School.
All of these scholarship funds are used to make annual or semi-annual grants to students and require that funds are available for the fall and spring semesters.
Field of Interest Funds
The Baker-Blockhouse Fund was established with the Beaver County Foundation in 2010. The purpose of the fund is to maintain and preserve a historical site of the George Baker II family believed to be, with the Levi Dungan family, the first settlers of Beaver County. George Baker II established a homestead in Center Township in 1772.
The Industrial Heritage Fund was established with an initial grant of $5,000 from J & L Steel Corporation in part to preserve the history of J&L and other historical items of the industrial heritage of Beaver County.
The Penn’s Woods Equestrian Fund was created in 1995 in part from a special carriage event developed by the late Frank H. Morrow. The fund is to be used for the encouragement and promotion of equestrian education and events in Beaver County.
The Rochester Tutorial Fund was established by a former teacher in the Rochester Schools with a gift of $25,000 to assist students in Rochester who may have learning needs. The funds are awarded for summer and regular school time tutoring sessions.
The Children’s Home Fund was established in 2001 with the transfer of funds from the Children’s Home Endowment to the Foundation. The initial transfer was in the amount of $670,000. The fund represents the endowment of the former Beaver County Children’s Home for orphaned youth. The fund operates as a “Foundation within a Foundation” and is used to encourage and support programs for youth. Currently the Board of the Children’s Home Fund advises the Foundation manager of its portfolio objectives.
Beaver Area Heritage Foundation is a fund established by a group of Beaver Area residents who wish to preserve and perpetuate the historical significance of the Beaver Area. The Heritage Foundation was begun in 1967 by Harry Philips, owner of the former Beaver Lunch. The funds were transferred to the Beaver County Foundation in September of 2005 with a beginning balance of approximately $100,000.
The Sweetwater Fund was created for the benefit of the Beaver Area Heritage Foundation. The gift was the result of the sale of the Sweetwater Hill Condominium by Mrs. Peggy Smythe March of Sewickley. Mr. Ed McLaughlin, Bovard Anderson, was instrumental in working with Mrs. March to provide this unusual demonstration of personal philanthropy.
Patterson Christian Ministry Fund was established on October 23, 2008 through a grant of $1,551,534. Mrs. Andrew (Ruth) Patterson bequeathed some $3 million to the First Presbyterian Church of Beaver, who in turn contributed approximately 50% to the Beaver County Foundation to form a Christian Ministry Fund in order to spread the Christian message through out Beaver County. Additionally, the fund will continue the support of a mission in Haiti begun by the church and the Patterson Fund.
Donor Advised Funds
The Decker-Denko Foundation was established by Dr. Joanne Denko to support ongoing research for a pharmaceutical intervention to drug and alcohol addiction. The initial gift was in the amount of $50,000.
The Dioguardi Foundation has been established by the R. Vincent Dioguardi family. It is to be funded by a joint and survivor insurance policy with a face value of $2 million upon maturity. This is to be used initially for special projects and selected scholarship programs. The investment strategy for this fund should be conservative with all of the funds being invested in fixed income securities.
The Charles W. Denko Foundation established this Donor Advised Fund with an initial contribution of $150,000 in December of 2001. Dr. Denko is the husband of Dr. Joanne Decker-Denko who has established a separate Donor Advised Fund. It is the intent of the donor to contribute $1 million to the Beaver County Foundation over the next several years. The major beneficiary of the dividends, interest and principal of this fund is to be Geneva College and several churches in the Ellwood City area. Investments should be conservative to assure funds area available for distribution. Distributions have been made to Geneva College in support of construction of their science building.
The Beaver County Bar Association Fund was established on July 19, 2002 as the charitable vehicle for the association. The purpose of the fund is to support community oriented programs and events from time to time. It will be funded from periodic contribution made through the Bar Association
The Economy Borough Veterans Memorial Fund was established in 2006 by a group of Economy residents to create, construct and maintain a memorial recognizing those who served our nation with the ultimate sacrifice.
The John Kotun Fund. This fund was created in 2007, with an initial deposit of $500. John Kotun, a 1998 graduate of South Side Beaver County High School, was injured while skiing in Utah. The purpose of the fund is to provide financial support to families and individuals with serious injuries. Payments are only made to agencies and not individuals.
The McLaughlin Family Cemetery Fund. This fund was established by John R., and Joetta “Nicki” Z. McLaughlin with an initial deposit of $5,000. The purpose of the fund is to provide funds to pay for the ordinary and necessary expenses of operating, maintaining, and improving the cemetery, to buy cemetery property; and to create a fund that will provide a source of income for the perpetual care of the McLaughlin Cemetery and create a reasonable reserve for any ordinary and necessary purpose.
The Pisgah Fund was established on April 15, 2003 by individuals who wanted to support the campus ministry of Geneva College. Pisgah is the name of the mountaintop from which Moses looked over the Promised Land. Income from the fund helps support the Christian outreach of Geneva College
The Eugene F. and Margaret Moltrup Jannuzi Foundation was created by Eugene F. Jannuzi as a memorial to his wife Margaret. The “fund” was established on July 30, 2004 with an initial cash contribution by Eugene F. Jannuzi of $100,000 in the form of a charitable remainder trust. Additionally, the “fund” is the named beneficiary of several life insurance policies. Distribution from the “fund” will favor certain church groups and several upper Beaver Valley social service organizations.
The Blackwood Foundation was established by W. Richard Blackwood on October 5, 2004 with an initial contribution of $100,000. The purpose of the fund is to support programs of interest to the donor mainly in the upper Beaver Valley. Such programs include those related to golf for youth, the Humane Society, and various social service organizations.
Korean-Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund was established on November 19, 2004 by the Beaver County Times and its Controller, Ed Metzger. The fund is the result of an effort started by Brighton Township resident Paul E. Lanning, a Korean War Veteran. The Times began a fund raising effort in early 2003 and the memorial was dedicated on November 9, 2003. A similar effort was conducted in 1983 to construct a Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated on November 11, 1983. Some $54,682 was raised beyond the cost of both memorials and as a result this fund was created to provide maintenance and upkeep of the memorials. A committee consisting of the President of the Vietnam Veterans, the Beaver County Director of Veterans Affairs and a representative of the Beaver County Times will advise the Foundation of the needs to maintain the memorials.
The Bloom-O’Data Fund was established to support religious and charitable causes such as the Lutheran Church, Geneva College, the Medical Center and the Humane Society. It was established by Beaver County Foundation founder, Charles O’Data and his wife, Marilyn. Funds were held as a Certificate of Deposit but in 2005 were moved to the Trust Department for investment.
The Beaver County Law Enforcement Memorial Fund agreement was signed, by the Beaver County Chiefs of Police Association, Beaver Valley Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #4, and the James Naim Memorial Lodge #26 on December 16, 2006. Each of the founding organizations contributed an initial deposit of $1800 and the fund was opened in January of 2007. The fund was established to provide financial stability for the long-term care and promotion of the law enforcement memorial erected in Agnew Square, Beaver, PA, in 2005. It will provide the funds for general maintenance, upkeep, and capital needs associated with preserving the memorial, as well as, support for expansion and memorial events. The treasurer of the Law Enforcement Memorial Fund Committee was designated as advisor for the fund.
The Beaver County Chief’s of Police Association established a found in July 2007 with an initial gift of $15,000. The fund is to be used for training, continuing education, and communication within the chief’s association.
The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #4 Fund was created in June of 2007 with an initial contribution of $150,000. The fund is to be used for officer training, continuing education, law enforcement education and community awareness programs.
The Foundation has the ability to manage organization endowments. Currently, there are two organizational endowments within the Foundation.
Big Brothers and Big Sisters
Individuals may make contributions to the foundation for the benefit of these organizations. For information on how to assist these organizations through outright or planned gifts donors may contact the Foundation. These funds are for the long-term security of the Big Brother and Big Sister organization.
Early Childhood Success Fund. This fund was established on December 21, 2009. The purpose of the fund is to provide endowed funds for early childhood programs such as Head Start in Beaver County.
Funds within the Foundation may be created for as little as $5,000.
The Beaver County Foundation is able to create a Foundation within a Foundation. Individuals or businesses who establish a fund in the amount of $300,000 or more may choose to name the fund a “foundation.” Technically, the fund would function as a donor advised fund of the Beaver County Foundation.
The Beaver County Foundation has the ability to establish and manage charitable trusts, insurance gifts and other forms of planned gifts. For more information, interested persons may contact Charles N. O’Data, President, and Gloria Cheshier, Executive Director.
Updated: January 28, 2011