Barberton Community Foundation Announces Fourth Quarter Grants, New Board and Friends

Barberton Community Foundation’s Board of Directors met via Zoom on Thursday, November 19, to approve $89,224 in grants to 10 area nonprofits, to thank outgoing board members, to induct new board members, welcome the newest friends of the Foundation, and to approve the 2021 budget.

The City of Barberton was awarded $20,000 in matching funds for the Newton Park Improvement Project. Funding will be used to provide matching support for the Land and Water Conservation grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The finished project will include significant improvements to Newton Park for storm water management, as well as a playground, soccer complex, walking trail, lighting, and parking.

The Foundation granted $15,000 to Red Oak Behavioral Health to support the Barberton Community Wellness Collaborative. This Collaborative consists of seven community behavioral health agencies which are working together to support student needs at Barberton Schools. The Collaborative’s goal is to treat the needs of the whole child (pre-K – 12th grade students) and set them up for success.

Barberton Victim Advocacy Program received $15,000 to continue the services of a victim advocate at Barberton Municipal Court. The program is run by Victim Assistance Program, Inc. which provides support and safety to victims of crime, while informing them of their rights and guiding them through legal processes.

The Barberton Farmers’ Market Food Access Expansion program provided through Countryside received $9,500 in funding. The program provides tokens or vouchers to SNAP and WIC recipients which can be used to make purchases of fresh fruits and vegetables at Barberton Farmers’ Market.

The Foundation granted Child Guidance & Family Solutions $8,500 for their Toddlers & Preschoolers Succeeding (TAPS) Program. This program helps preschool teachers in childcare centers recognize and appropriately manage challenging child behaviors in the classroom, with the goal of reducing/eliminating expulsion from preschool. 

Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank was awarded $7,500 for their 2021 Barberton Food Distribution efforts. Funding will support the direct distribution program of the Foodbank which is carried out by the Barberton Salvation Army, as well as a Foodbank food credit to Barberton Area Community Ministries (BACM).

The Foundation granted $7,500 to Magical Theatre Company for the Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports (PBIS) Video Project. This project builds on Magical’s partnership with Barberton City Schools by providing a series of videos for the elementary and middle schools, focusing on anti-bullying and the “three R’s” (respectful, responsible, and ready).  

Girls on the Run Northeast Ohio received $2,500 to support their programming at Barberton Elementary West, Barberton Elementary East, and Barberton Middle School. GOTR has prepared programs for virtual participation that continue to promote their core mission of supporting healthy lifestyles in girls.

Barberton Girl Scouts, through Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio, was awarded $2,000. Funding will be used to assist families in Barberton who cannot afford the participation fee. There are 20 Girl Scout Troops in Barberton with 187 girls currently participating.

The American Red Cross of Greater Akron/Mahoning Valley received $1,724 for their Disaster Cycle Services. This program supports emergency disaster funding for families in Barberton.

The Foundation then approved the 2021 budget and concluded the meeting by inducting three new members to the Board of Directors.

The Foundation thanked Edna Boyle and Tina Linton for their service to the board. Edna has served on the Board of Directors since 2012 and Tina since 2013. Both have been instrumental on the Grants Committee and have provided valuable guidance over their terms.

The Foundation holds a 15-member board, with several members approved through Barberton City Council. With the transition of Michael Vinay away from the City, the Foundation approved Trevor Hunt to a board position with approval of City Council. The Foundation also welcomed Moriah Cheatham-Williams and Elizabeth Mayreis to three-year terms.

The Board approved Josh Gordon as Board Chair, Jason Slater as Vice Chair, Lynne Holcomb as Treasurer, and Jennifer Bidlingmyer as Secretary.

The Foundation would like to formally welcome the newest Friends of the Foundation: Joyce Coburn, Stuart Glauberman, Robert McDonald, Judge Todd McKenney, Denise Ratchford, Christopher Richardson, Bob Ryan, David Wynn, Susan Wynn, and Dustin Zuravel. They join current friends: Edna Boyle, Michael Chisnell, Mary Jo Goss, Tom Harnden, Paula Kallio, Kathy Maybin, and Melanie Vinay.

Become a Friend of the Foundation

Barberton Community Foundation is seeking candidates to serve as “Friends of the Foundation.” The candidates must be a current resident of Barberton, work in Barberton or volunteer in Barberton.

“Friends of the Foundation” play a significant role in the success of the Foundation. They are expected to actively participate in many areas of the organization’s work, which may include:
• Serve on committees as a voting member, as requested
• Assist with special events
• Be an ambassador for the Foundation
• Provide knowledge and assistance with donor outreach

We are seeking candidates who could bring knowledge and expertise in one or more of the following categories of need and possibly broaden our diversity:
• Experienced entrepreneur with innovative visionary mind-set for the future;
• Professional or entrepreneur experience in commercial and residential real estate and/or economic development;
• A public health professional or administrator;
• Professional experience in health and wellness;
• Experience with developing or professionally serving in education, arts, or in a social services area;
• Professional experience serving in the investment or financial services industry.

Friends are encouraged to attend Board of Director meetings, and will adhere to the same protocol offered to guests.

Friends may also be considered as potential Directors for the Foundation Board as vacancies occur within certain areas of need.

The deadline to apply is August 7, 2020.

If you are interested in becoming a candidate for the “Friends of the Foundation,” please send a cover letter and resume by email to Suzanne Allen, Ph.D., Executive Director, Barberton Community Foundation at or call 330-745-5995 should you have any questions.

COVID-19 Small Business Loan Partnership and Expansion of Emergency Response Fund

Barberton Community Foundation Board of Directors votes to create the Barberton Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Loan Fund and provide further funding to the Emergency Response Fund

On Monday, March 30, the Board of Directors of Barberton Community Foundation held an emergency meeting to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on Barberton and the role of the Foundation during this difficult time.

In response to the pressure COVID-19 has placed on our community’s small businesses, the Foundation board voted to create the Barberton Small Business Emergency Loan Fund, in partnership with the Barberton Community Development Corporation (BCDC) and the City of Barberton. The fund will be administered by BCDC and will be available to Barberton small businesses who have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scott Wagner, Executive Director of Barberton Community Development Corporation (BCDC) said, “This decision exemplifies how important it is for the Foundation, the City, and BCDC to work together. We’ve achieved a real strategy to help our small businesses weather this crisis.”

The Barberton Small Business Emergency Loan Fund will provide $200,000 to loan to small businesses. BCDC will oversee this fund, which will provide a maximum loan amount will be $10,000 per business. Loans will be offered at 0% interest and will provide short-term (1-3 year) payment terms. Additionally, payments will be deferred for 60 days. To be eligible, a small business must be a for-profit enterprise with its principal place of business located in the City of Barberton. The business must employ a minimum of three and a maximum of twenty-five individuals for at least twenty hours per week. Businesses must demonstrate a financial need and desire to continue operations by first applying for a U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan specifically related to the COVID-19 pandemic and/or another SBA loan program established to support small businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additional guidelines are available. Additionally, the business must not be in receivership or bankruptcy and cannot primarily sell tobacco products. The loan proceeds also cannot be used for vehicle or equipment lease or rental payments for personal property acquired on or prior to March 15, 2020.

Mayor William Judge stated, “I am pleased we are able to administer a useful and needed program that can have a quick turn-around for the business community. We’re here to help in any capacity needed.”

Barberton Community Foundation Board Chair Denny Liddle said he is proud of the Foundation’s ability to quickly respond. “The Barberton Community Foundation strives to position itself as a community leader, and we are proud of our quick response to COVID-19. Today we were able to build on that response and expand our commitment to the community by making funds available to BCDC and in partnership with the City of Barberton. I want to thank our board members for recognizing the need in our community and for pursuing a plan that puts us ahead of this crisis.”

Barberton small businesses can apply for this Emergency Loan Fund, along with SBA loans and the new Summit County Small Business Emergency Relief Grant Program to help provide continued working capital during the pandemic. For more information on this program, please contact Scott Wagner, Executive Director of Barberton Community Development Corporation ( or Brett Fogle, Director of Finance of the Barberton Community Foundation (

Additionally, during the emergency meeting the Foundation board voted to approve funding of an additional $50,000 from the Foundation’s Reserve Fund to the Foundation’s new Emergency Response Fund that was created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This Fund was created to provide financial assistance to nonprofits responding to the broader social impact of COVID-19 in Barberton. To date, this fund has distributed over $11,000 to nonprofits working in our community thanks to the donations of private individuals and organizations.

Executive Director Dr. Suzanne Allen said, “Today’s decision shows the commitment of our board to Barberton’s successful future. I’m encouraged by the creativity and willingness of our community leaders to think and respond quickly to the needs of the community.”

The emergency fund is something board member Tina Linton is particularly proud to see. She said, “Community members immediately looked to the Foundation in concern for our children when schools closed earlier this month. It quickly became clear there were also other related community needs as well. The Foundation stepped up to collaborate with the schools, the City, food banks, and donors.”

Allen said the community has already showed their resiliency by giving to the fund. “I want to thank the individuals and businesses that have already donated to the emergency fund. In this time of uncertainty, choosing to donate is a powerful decision and makes a direct impact.”

Anyone wishing to donate to the Emergency Response Fund should visit the Foundation’s website at or call 330-745-5995. To donate directly online follow this link:

If you are a nonprofit organization working to provide emergency food to insecure families, working in community health, or are providing additional services needed to alleviate hardships suffered by Barberton residents please contact Suzanne Allen, Executive Director ( or Carrie Herman, Director of Community Impact (

Barberton Resources (PDF)

Barberton Community Foundation