Moving Philanthropy

Well, we’re here. Your Owen County Community Foundation has nestled into our new home at 60 E. Market Street on the Courthouse Square.

Former board chair and soon to retire director Bob Livingston brought by an office-warming gift of a coffee maker, so the office became official (and caffeinated) on Monday morning. While we were still unpacking boxes, our neighbors from Our Community Bank and Owen County Tourism stopped in to welcome us to our new spot. John Hackworthy, another past board chairperson, stopped by to wish us well. On Tuesday afternoon, the hard working cadets from the Owen Valley High School Air Force Junior ROTC joined the staff and current board members move the bulk of our office files and file cabinets. And boy, do we have a lot of files!

And the topper just this morning, Main Street Coffee delivered my breakfast order right to my desk. Alright, I admit it, I like it here on the Square.

The ambience of life on a small town square is a nice side benefit of our move, but the establishment of an independent office for your OCCF has been a plan of our board of directors for many years. Under the leadership of board chair at the time, Connie Neihart, your OCCF began working on finding and establishing our own office. We included the establishment of our own office in our strategic plan. We saved up operating funds to cover the expenses of the move.

After evaluating several properties and considering many options over the last five years, we joined the excitement and progress on the Courthouse Square and signed a long-term lease with Trillium Woods, LLC and the Sudol family who are working hard to develop properties on the Square.

So, here we are continuing to serve the donors who want to improve Owen County through their charitable gifts. We’ve spent the last 25 years establishing a firm foundation for our operations, so that we can ensure our organization is strong and independent and can manage funds that will be here forever.

We benefited from the generosity of the Owen County State Bank (OCSB) through their gift of office space and reduced rent for almost 25 years, but we believe we need to be an independent presence in the community. Through the years many people assumed we were part of the bank, so the demonstration that we are a mission driven non-profit entity supported by many, many donors is an important part of our identity.

We will truly miss our friends at OCSB. They helped support our charitable mission and were friendly helpful office mates. We even bought doughnuts for the bank staff before we left. Our departure was a little sad to be honest, but we move on filled with gratitude for OCSB’s help and hospitality.

With coffee in the pot and our office (sort of) ready for action, we look forward to many more years of service to Owen County. We can’t wait to welcome our donors at our new office for more discussions about how folks can include charitable giving in their future estate plans. We look forward to seeing our local students stop in with their scholarship applications in hand. In a couple of weeks, we’ll host our first board of directors meeting here in the new office. And our grantees will be welcome visitors too, as they consult with us on possible grants for their local charitable projects.

Our work on the MYPath Trail System continues and our collaboration with other organizations dedicated to improving our community will go on as strong as ever.

Now that we’re here, please accept our thanks to our donors and the entire community for their support of philanthropy in our wonderful Owen County.

Our new digs are pretty cozy but we’re still here to help our communities become better places to live, grow, and work. Come by 60 E. Market Street on the Courthouse Square and say, “hey.” If you have questions about how you can use your charitable gifts to help Owen County, we’re here to answer them. Or you can give me a call at 812-829-1725, email me at mark@owencountycf.org, or visit us online at www.owencountycf.org.

We value community involvement and charitable spirit.

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