Area residents launch The Dexter Community Fund

Dexter Community Fund
Pictured are founding Members of the DCF’s Advisory Committee. Seated: Ann Davis, Julie Schumaker, and Dick Lundy (pictured via Google Chat) with Cheryl Elliott, former President & CEO of the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation. Back row: Dr. Christopher Timmis , Karl Fink, Dr. Dan Chapman, Jamie Guise, Linda Schlanderer Brewer, David Lutton, Carole Empey, and Paul Cousins. Not pictured: Gary Bruder, Caryl Burke, and Doug Kelly.

A group of passionate Dexter community volunteers have gathered together to establish a new permanent endowment at the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation to benefit the residents and community of Dexter.

The Dexter Community Fund is a source of community capital that will be available to support and invest in a wide range of community initiatives, projects and organizations that enrich the quality of life in Dexter. The Dexter Community Fund is also a vehicle for those interested in supporting Dexter to give back to the community. Members of the DCF’s initial advisory group have made personal contributions to establish the Fund, with hopes that additional contributions from local residents, businesses, community groups and anyone with roots or ties to Dexter will help grow the Fund.

As the Dexter Community Fund grows, the Fund’s Advisory Committee will award grants beginning in 2016 to support non-profit organizations and community projects that enrich the quality of life in Dexter across a number of areas: arts and culture, education, the environment, youth, senior services, health and wellness, human services and/or community improvement.

The vision for creating a permanent community endowment for Dexter originated more than ten years ago with Julie Schumaker, a local resident and member of the Dexter School Board.

“I wanted to create a vehicle for those of us who love Dexter to be able to say thank you and financially support the community in perpetuity,” Schumaker said.

Early in 2014, Schumaker partnered with Ann Davis, another long-time Dexter resident, to explore the possibilities and find a way to make it happen. The pair recruited an Advisory Committee comprised of other local residents and community leaders with expertise in finance, law, business, education, government and the non-profit sector.

All of the initial Advisory Committee contributed inaugural gifts to kickstart fundraising efforts. As a charitable endowment, the Dexter Community Fund, will be managed by the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation (AAACF). The Advisory Committee felt affiliating with AAACF would be the most effective approach in growing a community endowment for Dexter, given the Community Foundation’s professional investment management and grantmaking experience.

Davis currently serves on AAACF’s Board of Trustees and explained the decision.

“Through my involvement with the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, I have seen the good that an endowment can provide in improving the quality of life in a local community,” she said. “The Dexter Community Fund will provide a way for people who live or work in Dexter to give back to the community they love. It’s a source of community capital that can preserve all that makes Dexter a wonderful place to live while supporting projects that will improve our community for generations to come.”

This story has been adapted from a press release sent by The Dexter Community Fund.

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