Barberton Community Foundation Receives Clean Audit, Opens Game Changer Nominations and Economic Development Funding at May Board Meeting

Barberton Community Foundation Receives Clean Audit, Opens Game Changer Nominations and Economic Development Funding at May Board Meeting

Barberton Community Foundation Receives Clean Audit, Opens Game Changer Nominations and Economic Development Funding at May Board Meeting

(May 20, 2024 Barberton, Ohio) –Barberton Community Foundation’s Board of Directors met for their regular meeting on Thursday, May 16, 2024.

The meeting opened with a “mission moment” from Barberton City Schools teacher Heather Miller and AMHA representative Valerie Bechtel. Mrs. Miller and Mrs. Bechtel shared how successful a tutoring program at Van Buren Homes has become. This program is a partnership between BCSD and AMHA to provide tutoring to students at the Van Buren Homes community center. Barberton Community Foundation has funded this program as a matching grant partner with the schools for the past two years. Mrs. Miller shared that since the program’s beginnings, it has expanded from 1 to 5 teachers on site, increased to 4 days a week, and teachers see an average of 25 kids from all different grades. The students are putting in the work, too. Mrs. Miller shared that one student was able to increase her math test scores by 20 percentage points since the start of the school year.

Another key outcome is that, while the program began as an outreach initiative to AMHA families, it has become successful enough that parents from around the city are taking their kids to Van Buren Homes for tutoring. Miller said they abide by five core tenants for the program. “We provide a safe space to work, a quiet space to work,” Miller said. “We provide help. We are a continuation of their school day, and we promote a culture of learning and inclusiveness.”

The Foundation’s grant approval in February secures funding for this program through the 2024-2025 school year.

Finance

Tiffany Peters, Director of Finance reported the Foundation has received a clean audit with an unmodified opinion for the 2023 fiscal year. The board unanimously approved the Foundation’s 2023 Audited Financial Statements. Josh Gordon, Executive Director, said,

Governance

The board approved a motion to bring Brad Angeloff onto the board, pending Barberton City Council approval. Angeloff is a lifelong Barberton resident and has a strong financial background, especially in banking and economic development projects, a key focus for the Foundation. “We think he’ll make a great addition to the board,” said Gordon. “We look forward to being in a position to add his talent and expertise to our board.”

Economic Development

The Board continues to focus on initiatives benefiting downtown and economic development in Barberton. Along with Main Street Barberton funding, Newell Street Industrial Park, and Program Related Investments, the Foundation funds two programs aimed at business and building owners. The Economic Development Assistance Program (EDAP) and Downtown Rehabilitation Program (DRP) applications are open June 1-30.

Game Changers

The Board’s Development Committee is seeking nominations for the 2024 Game Changer Award. This award recognizes an individual and an organization or business that has made a positive impact on the community. Details and nominations are open now until June 10. Game Changers are recognized at the Foundation’s Annual Dinner Celebration on November 7. Make your nomination today!

Other Business

Peters announced the launch of GOfund, a new portal where donors and fund representatives can log in to an account and see fund activity, donation history, investment returns, and spendable amounts of the fund. “Adding GOfund to accommodate our donors is a significant advancement for the Foundation and our focus on technology that provides transparency and clarity for donors and fund representatives,” Gordon said.

The Health and Wellness grant cycle applications are due Monday, June 3. Grant partners should submit an LOI and complete an application in the GOapply portal. Contact Barberton Community Foundation at 330-745-5995 with questions.

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About Barberton Community Foundation

Established in 1996, Barberton Community Foundation has awarded over 8,500 grants and scholarships totaling more than $109 million since its inception. The Foundation strives to improve, now and forever, the quality of life for Barberton residents by providing leadership on vital issues, fostering collaboration, and creating a legacy of giving to do good. The Foundation strengthens the community for current and future generations by proactively directing its grant dollars to the community’s greatest needs. To read more about Barberton Community Foundation visit www.barbertoncf.org or follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/barbertoncommunityfoundation.

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Barberton Community Foundation Board of Directors Holds Annual Meeting

Barberton Community Foundation Board of Directors Holds Annual Meeting

Barberton Community Foundation Board of Directors Holds Annual Meeting

Lynne Holcomb to Serve as Board Chair, Josh Gordon Begins New Role as Executive Director

(January 19, 2023 Barberton, Ohio) –  Barberton Community Foundation’s Board of Directors met at Barberton Area Community Ministries (BACM) for its annual meeting on January 18, 2024.

The main business of the meeting was to elect the board’s slate of officers for the year. Lynne Holcomb was elected to serve as Chair of the Board of Directors. Holcomb has been a member of the board for seven years and was a Friend of the Foundation for three years. She is a Barberton native with a strong accounting and financial background, currently working as the Director of Finance for Top Echelon Software.

Holcomb succeeds Jason Slater, who is completing his final year on the board. Slater has served since 2022 as chair.

“I am thankful for the trust the board placed in me as their leader for the past two years,” Slater said. “Lynne too, has earned the trust and respect of the board as our Finance Committee chair. She has the background and understanding to enforce the board’s policies and governance to achieve the Foundation’s primary goal, which is to steward these funds in perpetuity for the benefit of all future Barbertonians.”

Holcomb thanked Slater for his service as chair.

“I am proud to be of service to an organization with leaders like Jason who have taken the long view of our community’s needs,” Holcomb said. “Many times, the impact of our decisions as a board is not felt for years. We will stay focused on our vision for economic growth, choosing grants and projects that do the most good for the most people over time. We are fortunate that we have a number of projects to review this year, and we are excited to continue those conversations.”

The full slate of officers for 2024 is: Lynne Holcomb, Chair; Moriah Cheatham-Williams, Vice-Chair; Hugh McMichael, Treasurer; and Deb Shreiner, Secretary. The board also welcomed one new member, Mike Andric, Assistant Director of Curriculum at Barberton City School District.

Andric has worked for the school district for 19 years. He is a member of Magic City Kiwanis and does additional volunteering in the community. Andric brings a valuable skillset as a community collaborator to the board. He is the district lead for the Business Advisory Council (BAC), a partnership between the City of Barberton, Barberton City School District, and Barberton businesses. The BAC works to connect business partners with the district to impact curriculum, support business needs in Barberton, and to create opportunities for work-based learning and employment.

Jennifer Bidlingmyer, 2023 board Treasurer and Chair of the Development Committee, completed her final term of service on the board. Slater thanked Bidlingmyer for her service to the Foundation.

“I can’t thank you enough for your time, expertise and commitment to the Foundation,” Slater said. “You have been a valuable contributor to the board, and to the good work being done at the Foundation.”

Bidlingmyer shared that one of her most proud accomplishments in her tenure on the board came when the Foundation completed the final payment on the debt service for Barberton High School in 2021.

New faces at the Foundation

The board also welcomed new Executive Director Josh Gordon to his role. “I’m doing my best to get up to speed as quickly as possible, as we have a lot of important work happening right now,” Gordon said. “While the Foundation is currently in cycle of growing our granting capacity, it’s wonderful to be in a room of people that care so much about building our community.”

Gordon also thanked Tiffany Peters, Director of Finance, for her time as interim. “Rarely has a transition been lead with such incredible support and guidance. I look forward to working with her and the rest of the outstanding team.”

Economic Development at the Foundation Continues

The Economic Development Committee report included an update on three of the active projects. The property at the old Rockwell Industries along Newell Street, purchased at the end of 2022 for redevelopment, continues to be a priority. The City of Barberton and the Foundation are collaborating on site readiness and entertaining businesses who have interest. Main Street Barberton, another project in partnership with the City, is fulfilling its mission of revitalizing downtown by focusing on filling building vacancies and creating new events to entice people to visit Barberton’s downtown arts and entertainment district. The committee also reported on the Magic Marketplace project, in partnership with the City of Barberton, for which the Foundation has previously earmarked $250,000. The project has a fast-approaching deadline for its development, and the board is hopeful the deadline is met, the project timeline is established, and work begins soon.

Other Business of the Foundation

Barberton Community Foundation was established from the sale of Barberton Citizens Hospital. A final piece of that sale, known as The Tuscora Park Liquidating Trust, is now resolved. The Trust was established separately with a portion of the assets from the sale that were withheld from the Foundation to cover the cost of any outstanding liabilities (such as workers’ compensation) owed by the hospital. Former Foundation Board Chair and former Foundation Executive Director, Tom Harden, was the steward of the Trust and resolved the final liabilities in December of 2023, enabling the complete proceeds from the sale to transfer to the Foundation.

The Foundation’s first grant cycle for Education and Workforce & Economic Development closes Thursday, February 1. Scholarships for high school students opened Friday, January 19 and will close Friday, February 9.

Students seeking scholarships and nonprofits interested in applying for grants should utilize the Foundation’s application portal GOapply available at barbertoncf.org.

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About Barberton Community Foundation

Established in 1996, Barberton Community Foundation has awarded over 8,500 grants and scholarships totaling more than $109 million since its inception. The Foundation strives to improve, now and forever, the quality of life for Barberton residents by providing leadership on vital issues, fostering collaboration, and creating a legacy of giving to do good. The Foundation strengthens the community for current and future generations by proactively directing its grant dollars to the community’s greatest needs. To read more about Barberton Community Foundation visit www.barbertoncf.org or follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/barbertoncommunityfoundation.

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Foundation Board Hosts Annual Meeting

Foundation Board Hosts Annual Meeting

Foundation Board Holds Annual Meeting 

Barberton Community Foundation’s Board of Directors met at the Barberton Public Library for their annual meeting on January 19, 2023.

The Foundation has three exiting board members: Josh Gordon, past chair, Denny Liddle and Brett Haverlick. Jason Slater, board chair, thanked the outgoing board members for their service to the Foundation. “I can’t thank you enough for your time, expertise and commitment to the Foundation. You all have made such a contribution to the good work being done here.”

The Foundation swore in the 2023 slate of officers. Jason Slater will continue in his role as chair of the board, with Lynne Holcomb serving as vice chair, Jennifer Bidlingmyer serving as treasurer and Deb Shreiner serving as secretary. 

The board welcomed four new members: Ann Hutchison, Hugh McMichael, Theresa Osborne and Susan Wynn. Each member agreed to serve an initial three-year term with the Foundation.

The first grant cycle for Education and Workforce & Economic Development closes Wednesday, February 1. Scholarships for high school students opened Friday, January 13 and will close Monday, February 13. Students seeking scholarships and nonprofits interested in applying for grants should utilize the Foundation’s new application portal GOapply available at barbertoncf.org. The Foundation also announced a first round of funding is available for the Downtown Building Rehabilitation Program and the Economic Development Assistance Program, with a deadline to apply by Monday, February 13.

Foundation Awards Health and Wellness Grant Cycle

Foundation Awards Health and Wellness Grant Cycle

Barberton Community Foundation Logo

The Barberton Community Foundation Board of Directors held their July board meeting at Summa Health – Barberton Campus. Several board and friends members toured the hospital’s newest Joint Replacement Center prior to the meeting. The board discussed regular business and voted to approve Hugh McMichael and Theresa Osbourne to the Friends of the Foundation. Executive director Suzanne Allan, Ph.D. said, “We’re pleased to welcome people who care about our community as new Friends to the Foundation.”

The Foundation’s second grant cycle focuses on health and wellness. The board approved fourteen grants totaling $143,535.

The largest grant of the cycle was $25,000 awarded to Summa Health – Barberton Campus to support the purchase of a new CT machine, supporting cardiac care, stroke therapy and more.

The Foundation awarded $15,000 to AxessPointe in Barberton for their Patient Assistance Fund, which will cover costs such as prescription copays, provide groceries, hygiene items and cleaning items. Funding will help AxessPointe ensure underserved and low-income individuals receive crucial primary and preventative care.

Victim Assistance Program was awarded $15,000 for their Barberton Victim Advocacy Program, which serves victims of crime and trauma. The program is located within the Barberton Municipal Court.

The City of Barberton received grants for two separate parks projects. Tuscora Park received $15,000 to support six new pickleball courts and Breitenstine Park received $10,000 towards renovating the tennis courts.

Countryside (Cuyahoga Valley Countryside Conservancy) received $10,000 to continue their community food access program at the Barberton Farmers Market. This program has been very successful in supporting SNAP and WIC clients with options for more fruits, vegetables and healthy foods in their diets.

Girls on the Run received $10,000 to provide scholarships for girls interested in participating during the fall 2022 and spring 2023 seasons. Funding will also support the purchase of athletic shoes and coaching stipends.

The Humane Society of Summit County received $10,000 to provide services for pet owners in the Barberton community through their MABEL clinic.

The Foundation awarded $7,500 to the Akron Canton Regional Food Bank to support costs associated with the monthly Barberton Direct Distribution, which provides access to healthy food at no cost for Barberton residents. This funding equates to a provision of 14,400 lbs. of food.

IBH Addiction Recovery received $7,500 for group and individual counseling for Barberton clients with substance abuse disorder. Clients receive counseling at every level of care which includes residential, day, intensive outpatient, and outpatient treatment.

Embracing Futures, Inc. received $6,000 to support their Orthodontic Care program, which supports low-income families by providing braces for children with severe orthodontic problems.

The Foundation awarded Greenleaf Family Center $5,000 to support school-based suicide prevention services to approximately 2,000 Barberton middle and high school students.

Ben Curtis Family Foundation received $5,000 to support their Birdie Bags program. This program continues to serve 1,400 to 1,500 Barberton children once each month with take-home bags containing six nonperishable meals, four snacks and personal hygiene essentials.

The Foundation supported the Rape Crisis Center with $2,535 for their program, Responding to Victims in Barberton community. Funding supports victims of domestic/family/intimate partner abuse and/or sexual violence.

The Foundation’s last grant cycle of the year focuses on arts and community programming and is due October 1.

Top Photo Tag: (L-R) Friends of the Foundation Bob McDonald, Paula Kallio attend a tour with Michelle Rappach RN, Joint Replacement Manager at Summa Health – Barberton Campus. Michelle says, “When you aren’t in joint pain, you move better, you feel better and you live better.”

 

Foundation Board Meets at White Rabbit, Awards Funding for First Grant Cycle

Foundation Board Meets at White Rabbit, Awards Funding for First Grant Cycle

Barberton Community Foundation Logo

The Barberton Community Foundation Board of Directors held their second meeting of the year at White Rabbit Galleries.

The board discussed regular business and approved $119,220.86 for thirteen grants in the first grant cycle of the year: Education and Workforce & Economic Development.

The board approved a fund name change from the Esther Ryan Shoe Endowment Fund to the Magic City Kiwanis/Esther Ryan Shoe Endowment Fund. This change came after the Magic City Kiwanis agreed to partner with the Foundation and merge two funds under the Foundation’s management. Magic City Kiwanis will continue to host the annual Spaghetti Dinner.

Another fund change was for the Barberton Community Health Clinic Endowment Funds. At the direction of fund holder Donna Keim, the health clinic funds will transfer into a new scholarship called the Walter Ritzman Scholarship Fund. This change comes as the Health Clinic no longer exists to serve the community. The scholarship will provide support to Barberton students pursuing a pharmacy degree.

Grants Approved

The Foundation awarded thirteen grants totaling $119,220.86 in their first grant cycle of the year.

Child Guidance & Family Solutions received $10,000 for their program Toddlers and Preschoolers Succeeding program (TAPS) which improves kindergarten readiness and reduces preschool expulsion rates in four Barberton preschools annually. TAPS helps preschools focus on children’s social-emotional needs by providing trauma-informed approaches, classroom management techniques and embedded social-emotional models.

With the new Barberton Intermediate School beginning next year, The Foundation awarded $4,800 to Barberton City Schools for t-shirts to all the staff and students of Barberton Intermediate to support community and pride.

Tri-County JOG was awarded $26,500 for their program, Municipality Workforce Development for Barberton Youth, which share municipality employment opportunities with Barberton High School juniors.

The Akron-Barberton Community Workforce Development program, managed by SCORE Akron, received $5,000 to assist with their mentoring and educational workshops for entrepreneurs and small business owners.

Camp Invention, a popular summer program organized by the National Inventors Hall of Fame received $10,000 to provide financial support to Barberton students who would like to attend the program.

United Way of Summit & Medina received $5,000 for their Financial Empowerment Services programming provided to Barberton residents. The center estimates they will serve 75 residents through free financial empowerment programming, including financial coaching, tax preparation and banking assistance.

The Foundation supported JA programming through Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio with a $5,000 grant to provide support for JA’s K-12 programming which focuses on financial literacy, entrepreneurship and work readiness.

The International Soap Box Derby received $4,000 to continue their SBD Mini Car STEM program with Barberton City School elementary students and provide materials for middle school students’ gravity racing challenges.

Red Oak Behavioral Health received $13,000 for summer programming in partnership with Lake Anna YMCA.

Barberton City Schools Theatre Department received $20,000 to upgrade the theatre equipment. Currently the sound and lighting boards are failing. Upgrades will benefit both the school and community groups who use the theater.

Barberton City Schools eSports received $5,671.70 to purchase three additional computers for student players. The program has a waiting list for players and is fundraising for team jerseys.

The Foundation awarded two grants to Barberton City Schools for additional programs: $2,796.92 for their program Learning under the Lights, which is a summer reading and math event, and $7,452.25 for building a Magical Reading Nook at Barberton Primary School for students to read under the stairs in a cozy environment.

Other business:

The Foundation Board passed several policy updates out of the governance committee and welcomed Tiffany Peters to the Foundation staff as the new director of Finance. Tiffany started on Monday, March 14 and is joining the Foundation from serving in various financial roles with United Way of Summit and Medina Counties.

 

Foundation Board Holds Annual Meeting, Swears In New Slate of Officers

Foundation Board Holds Annual Meeting, Swears In New Slate of Officers

Barberton Community Foundation Logo
(L-R) Justin Greer and Josh Gordon
(L-R) Slate of Officers: Deb Shreiner, Jason Slater, Denny Liddle, Jennifer Bidlingmyer

Barberton Community Foundation’s Board of Directors met at the Active Adult Center for their annual meeting on January 20, 2022.

Josh Gordon, outgoing chair, welcomed Justin Greer to the board. Greer is automatically appointed to the Foundation board with his seat as City Council President and will serve an intial three-year term with the Foundation.

The Foundation also swore in a new slate of officers for 2022. Jason Slater will serve as Chair of the Board with Denny Liddle serving as Vice Chair, Jennifer Bidlingmyer serving as Treasurer and Debra Shreiner serving as Secretary.

Other business included the economic development committee’s report on the Foundation’s contract with Heritage Ohio to provide a Downtown Assessment Review Team (DART) visit this spring. The Foundation is also working with Measurement Resources to conduct a needs assessment for the Barberton community. The Foundation is partnering with the City, Schools, and Summa Health Barberton Campus on the assessment.

Jim Bauschlinger, chair of the economic development committee, reports that the 10-year lease to Stark State College’s Barberton Campus for the Armory building, which is a Foundation property, will expire this summer. Stark State is planning to consolidate their welding program in Akron. The Foundation will be making a decision as to how best to utilize this property.

Suzanne Allen, Executive Director, shared that the Foundation had a record year for donations. “We are extremely grateful that we serve such a giving community,” she said. The Foundation also established four new funds in 2021, three of which are scholarships for Barberton students. The scholarship window is currently open for Barberton High School students to apply through the School’s website. Suzanne shared that the Foundation is looking forward to increasing the scholarships for the 2022 school year.

If you want to learn more about the Foundation, visit our website at barbertoncf.org or please give us a call at 330-745-5995.