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Funds are among more than $1 million in grants and scholarships awarded to local organizations and individuals this year

Legacy Foundation announces the recipients of $260,000 in college scholarship awards for 2012.

Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s leading philanthropic partner, manages 30 scholarship programs within its $40 million in assets. The foundation’s scholarship committees, comprised of community volunteers, annually review applications from hundreds of high-school seniors and current college students.

“One of Legacy Foundation’s most important roles is to support and encourage educational achievement,” said Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer of Legacy Foundation. “Diverse groups of dozens of volunteers from throughout the community are engaged in selecting these worthy recipients, based on the many accomplishments of these young people and the promise they show for their college careers and beyond.”

The scholarships are among nearly $1.1 million in grants and scholarships funded by Legacy Foundation during the first six months of 2012. In addition to the $260,000 in new scholarship awards, the foundation supports students currently enrolled in school with the help of $531,000 in renewable scholarships.

Also during 2012 thus far, Legacy Foundation has granted nearly $306,000 to Northwest Indiana nonprofit organizations that are improving the quality of life and educational opportunities for area residents.

For details about the many scholarships available through Legacy Foundation, visit the website at www.legacyfdn.org/scholarships.LakeCounty high-school and college students are encouraged to check the site for information about available scholarship funds.

Scholarships, 2012 recipients named by Legacy Foundation and their respective schools include:

Barbara Miller Meeker Art Scholarship: Ariana Koultourides, Munster High School

Bi-Centennial Memorial Scholarship: Guadalupe Almendarez, MortonHigh School

Ana Dominguez

BP Products of North America Scholarship:  April Biscocho, Andrean High School; Ana Dominguez, Munster High School

Broadway Scholarship: Jaylynn Page, Wirt-Emerson Visual & Performing Arts; April Biscocho, Andrean High School

D.J. and Rose Nidetz Scholarship: Jaclyn Gessert, Interlochen Arts Academy

 Donna K. Yundt Memorial Scholarship: Courtney Myers, Lake Central High School

Dr. John Maniotes Scholarship: Kailey Kawalec, Munster High School; Marina Tipold, Hobart High School

Dr. R.T. White Scholarship: Anna Shehigian, Munster High School, Conrad Navarro, Munster High School

April Biscocho

Fred and Louise Latshaw Scholarship: Michael Kukurugya, Crown Point High School; Gavin Mariano

Hammond Common Council Scholarships: Nicolas Kubacki, Bishop Noll High School; Lewis Burnet, Miguel Gaitan, Alyssa Miner, and Stephanie Perez, Clark High School; Jesse Diaz, Madelyn Johnston, and Cristina Lopez, Gavit High School; Josue Morales, Hector Tello, and Yvette Zither, Hammond High School; Samuel Berrios, Brock Daniels, Angel Flores, and Jacarr Washington, Morton High School.

Herbert R. Kocher Memorial Scholarship: James Staley, WhitingHigh School

 John V. and George Primich Family Scholarship:  Enrique Ayala, Adam Mark, Kimberly Sherwin, Amanda Szura, Christopher Zakian, and Timothy Zakian.

Joseph Trent Morrow/Urban League of Northwest Indiana Scholarship: Alexandria Artis, Thea Bowman Leadership Academy

Joshua Benjamin Cohen Memorial Scholarship: Gretchen Kohler and Conner Sunday,Valparaiso High School

June Pangburn Scholarship: Sarah Heming, Hobart High School

Kathy Lynn Hooks Memorial Scholarship:  Alexa Clark, River Forest High School

Lake County Athletic Officials Association Scholarship: Kathryn Gawor, The Culver Academies; Nicholas Roach, Mt. Carmel High School

Legacy Foundation Scholarship: Matthew Binder, Hobart High School; Lauren Kiser, Merrillville High School; Tyler Munjas, Lowell High School; Jaylynn Page, Wirt-Emerson Visual & Performing Arts; James Staley, Whiting High School

Legends Scholarship:  Cosetta Black, Calumet College of St. Joseph

Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship:  Jackeline Fernandez, East Chicago Central High School; Cassandra Firchau, Crown Point High School; Sarah Guistolisi, Griffith High School; Taylor Hillegonds, Hanover Central High School; Tanisha Howard, West Side Leadership Academy; Desiree Swartz, River Forest High School

Nancy J. Pinnick Memorial Scholarship: Sueann Mason, River Forest High School

Patrick Lindsey Memorial Scholarship: Avery Davis, Thea Bowman Leadership Academy; Ryan Robinson,Morton High School

Roger Begnoche Scholarship: Colin Mancera,Lake Central High School

Sengupta Family Scholarship: Keertan Kini, Lake Central High School

W. James Spicer Scholarship: Jaylynn Page, Wirt-Emerson Visual and Performing Arts Academy

Webster Cornwell Memorial Scholarship: Vanria Nabors, Hammond High School

The Cara Spicer Scholarship was created this year in her memory by her family. The first recipients are:  four students who will receive summer band tuition assistance through Books, Brushes, and Bands; four students who will receive art instruction and supplies through South Shore Arts; and one Wirt-Emerson Visual and Performing Art Academy student who will receive help with expenses while attending a summer program at Alvin Ailey Dance Training in New York City.

James Staley

Jaylynn Page

Matthew Binder

Tyler Munjas

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Student studies at Crown Point Adult Learning Center

Student Alex Robles studies language skills at the Crown Point Adult Learning Center. Two Legacy Foundation grants to the center were among more than $1.1 million in funding to community organizations and scholarships during the first half of 2012.

Lake County’s leading philanthropic partner marks new milestone in funding of quality of life initiatives and educational attainment

Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s leading philanthropic partner, funded nearly $1.1 million in grants and scholarships during the first six months of 2012.

“This significant investment in the quality of life and educational attainment of Northwest Indiana residents marks a new milestone for Legacy Foundation,” noted Harry Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer. “We are leading the way in creating positive impact through funding that enhances the community, creates an informed and engaged citizenry, and helps youth graduate high school and realize their higher education and career goals.”

Legacy Foundation manages four major funds to support Lake County nonprofit organizations that enhance the quality of life for people throughout the region. From these funds, the foundation has awarded nearly $306,000 in grants so far this year.

Legacy Foundation also manages 30 scholarship programs within its $40 million in assets. These programs awarded $260,000 in new funds for the 2012-13 academic year, while students continue to benefit from $531,000 in renewable scholarships.

“Young people throughout Lake County are achieving great things academically while becoming engaged in their community,” Vande Velde said. “Legacy Foundation proudly stewards donors’ funds to support the hopes and dreams of these talented scholars to attain a college education.”

Grants make positive impact in the community

Campagna Academy soon will complete construction of an outdoor therapeutic recreation area on its 47-acre Schererville campus thanks to the support of a Legacy Foundation grant. CEO Elena Dwyre said the project features a low ropes course that will improve clinical services to children served by the facility, and will be offered to the community for programs such as leadership skills training. The project had been on the drawing board for some time and would not have been possible without the Legacy Foundation funding.

“This has allowed us to improve and strengthen our services for the children,” Dwyre said. “(Government) cuts in rates for our services have been quite significant, and without this type of financial support, nonprofits would not be able to add to the services we offer. It is important for us to find collaborative partners like Legacy Foundation.”

In Crown Point, the Adult Learning Center recently moved to new space in the Lakeview Square shopping center. The center currently is helping more than 120 students with GED preparation and English as a Second Language classes. A Legacy Foundation grant helps pay for rent, utilities, internet access and phone service. A second, matching grant will help the board build its fundraising capacity.

“Legacy Foundation’s funding is critical to our very basic needs,” said Carol Borowski, president of Friends of the Crown Point Adult Learning Center. “If we can’t pay the rent, we won’t have a school. We have been serving adult learners since 1979 and have been in several different locations in town, so we’re pleased to be able to continue the school serving the Crown Point community.”

Client intake at Sojourner Truth House

An employee works with a homeless mother and child during intake at Sojourner Truth House in Gary. A Legacy Foundation grant to Sojourner Truth House will ensure a case manager works with each client to create a recovery plan.

Grants awarded during 2012

From January through June 2012, Legacy Foundation awarded grants to the following Lake County nonprofit organizations:

From the Lake County Community Fund

  • Campagna Academy to build an outdoor therapeutic recreation area
  • Catholic Charities to renovate parks and vacant lots in Gary
  • Crown Point Community Theatre to create a theater arts mentoring program
  • Food Bank of Northwest Indiana to collaborate on a teaching garden with Avicenna Academy, the Town of Merrillville, and GrowNWI
  • Dunes Learning Center to update curriculum for Lake County students
  • Friends of the Crown Point Adult Learning Center to rent program space and build fundraising capacity
  • Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Indiana to purchase building materials for two homes in East Chicago
  • Indiana Ballet Theatre to subsidize student attendance of arts programming
  • METAS to increase the number of Lake County Latino students earning college degrees
  • Miller Beach Arts and Creative District to support five pop-up art events
  • Northwest Indiana Excellence in Theater Foundation to design a website that engages members and donors
  • Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission to produce a video of the Comprehensive Regional Plan
  • Opportunity Enterprises to serve Lake County clients at the Lake Eliza campus
  • Our Family Center to build organizational capacity
  • Parents as Teachers of Lake County to provide parent educator services that include program monitoring and quality assurance activities
  • Shirley Heinze Land Trust to conduct an environmental education program for Hobart students
  • Sojourner Truth House to ensure a case manager works with each client to create a recovery plan
  • Teach for America to build organizational capacity in Lake County
  • Three Creeks Historical Association to restore the oldest historical brick home in Lake County
  • Tri-Town Safety Village to subsidize student participation in safety programming

From the Maria Reiner Senior Citizen Fund

  • Hobart Family YMCA to fund senior services in Hobart
  • School City of Hobart to fund senior arts programming in Hobart

From the College Readiness Fund

  • College Mentors for Kids to support a mentoring program for Hammond students
  • Communities in Schools to coach high school students to graduate high school and chart college and career opportunities
  • Gary Life Education Initiative to coach middle school students to graduate high school and chart college and career opportunities
  • Hammond Education Foundation to coach parents to teach their children through reading at home
  • Hobart Education Foundation to provide early childhood education classes for children and parents
  • Purdue University Calumet Education Talent Search to support college and career readiness programming
  • The Salvation Army to tutor students struggling with math and language arts
  • Urban Reach, Inc. to coach students to become the first generation of their family to graduate college

From the John S. and James L. Knight Fund

  • Gary Public Library South Shore Museum and Cultural Center to create a sustainability model for the museum and cultural center
  • Leadership Northwest Indiana to implement leadership programming for Lake County students
Crown Point Adult Learning Center

Teacher Pat Cope (left) reviews materials with student Angel Santomaria at the Crown Point Adult Learning Center. Two grants from Legacy Foundation help pay for rent and other basic needs of the center, as well as build the board’s fundraising capacity.

To learn more about the Legacy Foundation grants program, visit www.legacyfdn.org or email legacy@legacyfdn.org.  Grant applications are posted August 1, and the next deadline for grant applications is Sept. 1, 2012.

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2012 Lake County Lilly Scholars

Cassandra Firchau, Tanisha Howard, Taylor Hillegonds, Jackeline Fernandez, Sarah Guistolisi and Desiree Swartz are the Legacy Foundation 2012 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars.

Six outstanding Lake County students have been named recipients of four-year, full-tuition scholarships as the Legacy Foundation 2012 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars.

Each Lilly Scholar will receive full tuition to the Indiana college or university of  her choice and a $900 yearly stipend for required books and equipment.

 The local 2012 Lilly Scholars are:

  • Jackeline Fernandez of East Chicago Central High School, daughter of Marie Maysonet
  • Cassandra Firchau of Crown Point High School, daughter of Leo and Rosanne Firchau
  • Sarah Guistolisi of Griffith High School, daughter of Michael and Laura Guistolisi
  • Taylor Hillegonds of Hanover Central High School, daughter of William and Michelle Hillegonds
  • Tanisha Howard of West Side Leadership Academy in Gary, daughter of Patricia Howard
  • Desiree Swartz of River Forest High School in Hobart, daughter of Sherri Swartz

“As Lake County’s leading philanthropic resource, one of Legacy Foundation’s most important roles is to support educational opportunity,” said Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer of Legacy Foundation. “We are proud to recognize the many accomplishments of these young people as they begin their promising college careers, and to partner with Lilly Endowment in advancing them toward their futures.”

Legacy Foundation recognized the Lilly Scholars with a dinner in their honor at Innsbrook Country Club. The event featured keynote speaker Jared Tomich, a former National Football League player and Lake Central High School graduate who returned to the Lake County community to found Ignite Sports Performance Centers, Fuel Fitness Centers and the Halo of Hope Foundation. The foundation offers camp experiences to children undergoing treatment for cancer.

Jared Tomich at Lilly Scholars dinner

Philanthropist and former NFL player Jared Tomich speaks to the 2012 Lilly Scholars.

Tomich encouraged the young scholarship recipients to enjoy college and life experiences, and to come back home to give back to their community.

“When I was done playing (in the NFL), there was no question, my roots were here. I came home and started my businesses,” Tomich said.

Each high school in Lake County was invited to submit an applicant for the prestigious Lilly scholarships. A total of 224 students from 27 schools applied for the 2012 awards. Those nominated by their high schools were evaluated based on academic performance, demonstrated leadership skills, service to others, character, a written narrative, demonstrated financial need and an interview.

After Legacy Foundation’s scholarship committee narrowed the field to six nominees and four alternates, the finalists’ names were submitted to Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. (ICI) for the selection of the recipients. ICI is a nonprofit corporation that represents 31 regionally accredited degree-granting, nonprofit, private colleges and universities in the state.

“The selection process was challenging because all the candidates showed significant academic achievement while participating in extracurricular activities, holding jobs and giving back to the community,” said Martha Rivas-Ramos, a member of Legacy Foundation’s board of directors as well as a member of the Scholarship Committee. “The applicants from throughout Lake County have achieved a great deal at a young age, and we are confident that they will make important contributions to our community in the years to come.”

The Lilly scholarships were created in 1998 by a statewide Lilly Endowment initiative to help Indiana students reach higher levels of education. Indiana ranks among the lowest states in the percentage of residents over the age of 25 with a bachelor’s degree.

This year community foundations around the state awarded 142 Lilly scholarships. Since the inception of the program, Legacy Foundation has awarded 145 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarships to Lake County students.

Legacy Foundation manages 30 scholarship programs. Lake County residents are encouraged to check Legacy Foundation’s Web site for information at www.legacyfdn.org/scholarships.

 

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Shuré-Nachelle Parrish, a student at Valparaiso University majoring in nursing and global health, was named the 2011-2012 Legends Scholar at this year’s South Shore Legends induction ceremony, held Dec. 15 at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond.

The Legends Scholarship celebrates an individual who overcomes challenges and obstacles in the pursuit of a dream of a college education and lifelong learning. The Legends Scholar must demonstrate one or more of the virtues of Exploration, Courage, Creativity, and/or Innovation toward achieving a college education. These are the qualities of the Legends who are celebrated by the Wall of Legends displayed at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond.

The Legends Scholarship is sponsored by First Midwest Bank and administered by Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s philanthropic partner. The Wall of Legends is sponsored by BP Whiting Business Unit. Parrish will receive a $1,000 scholarship, and her name will be displayed at the Wall of Legends.

Current undergraduate or graduate degree candidates at six Northwest Indiana institutions of higher learning – Calumet College of St. Joseph, Indiana University Northwest, Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana Northwest, Purdue University Calumet, Purdue University North Central, and Valparaiso University – are eligible to apply for the Legends Scholarship. The application and detailed information can be found on the Legacy Foundation website, www.legacyfoundationlakeco.org/scholarships. Applications must be submitted to the student’s Financial Aid Office by March 15 of each year. 

 

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Larger space in Merrillville’s Twin Towers accommodates expanding capacity to serve Lake County’s philanthropic needs

(MERRILLVILLE, Indiana) – Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s philanthropic partner, has moved to larger office space in the Twin Towers office complex at the intersection of    I-65 and U.S. 30 in Merrillville.

Legacy Foundation’s new address is 1000 East 80th Place, North Tower 402, Merrillville, Indiana 46410. The phone number remains (219) 736-1880.

Previously Legacy Foundation was located on the third floor of the South Tower. The new space features a multipurpose classroom, more individual offices for staff, and a spacious reception area for guests.

The expansion was necessary to accommodate Legacy Foundation’s growth as a leader in providing philanthropic resources to the Lake County community. The foundation provides grants, manages funds and scholarships, offers development workshops to nonprofit organizations and professional advisors, and partners with community leaders to support projects that solve problems and enhance lives.

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Legacy Foundation is distributing more than $350,000 in college scholarship funds for the 2011-2012 academic year.

Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s philanthropic partner, manages more than 25 scholarship programs among its $38 million in assets. The Foundation’s scholarship committees, comprised of community volunteers, annually review applications from hundreds of high-school seniors and current college students.

“One of Legacy Foundation’s most important roles is to support and encourage educational attainment. Scholarships help students achieve their goals,” said Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer of Legacy Foundation. “Diverse groups of dozens of volunteers from throughout the community are engaged in selecting worthy recipients of scholarship awards, based on the many accomplishments of these young people and the promise they show for their college careers and beyond.”

Among the scholarship programs managed by Legacy Foundation are the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarships for Lake County and the Legacy Scholarships. Awards from those programs for 2011 have been previously announced.

Additional scholarships, 2011 recipients named by Legacy Foundation funds, and, where applicable, their respective high schools, include:

D.J. and Rose Nidetz Scholarship: Braden Cleary, Wheeler High School

Donna K. Yundt Memorial Scholarship: Alexa Candreva, Lake Central High School

Dr. John Maniotes Scholarship: Elaine Pitsas, Munster High School; Jessica Sinclair, Highland High School; Daniella Tripodis, Chesterton High School

Dr. R.T. White Scholarship: Marelle A. Cerven, Munster High School; Bridget McCullough, Munster High School

Fred & Louise Latshaw Scholarship: Margaret Poling

Hammond Common Council Scholarship: Nathan Akerman, Ta’Shanya Bone, Nicole Brandy, Juan Carrasco, Nathan Cichock, Sharissa Guerrero, Francisco Hernandez, Jr., Candice Manuel, Daniela Mata, Ashley Overton, Frank Robles, Kaelyn Shabaz, Darren Simpson, Abigayle Stern, Paul Szymkowski

Herbert R. Kocher Memorial Scholarship: Shantell Smith, Roosevelt Career & Technical Academy

IBEW Local Union #697 Memorial Scholarship: Brooke Bonich, Christopher Brahos, Karl DeLange, Brooke Fargo, Sean Flannery, Kyle Gatlin, Elaine Hall, Douglas Hanenburg, Rebecca Johnson, Ryan Kabella, Samuel Kasmark, Tiffany Michaels, Matthew Miller, Thomas Moore, Jr., Cindy Rawley, Kathy Rawley,
Benjamin Rose, Hannah Schutter, Erin Shikany, Kaitlyn Sintkowski, Marissa Smith, Kristina Soderquist, Sarah Spies, Ashley Spurr, Lisa Waldrop

John V. and George Primich Family Scholarship: Enrique Ayala, Ryan Merriman, Kelly Peloza, Kimberly Sherwin, Amanda Szura, Christopher Zakian

Joseph Trent Morrow/Urban League of Northwest Indiana Scholarship: Litney Gray, West Side Leadership Academy

June Pangburn Scholarship: Lauren Richter, Hobart High School

Lake County Athletic Officials Association Scholarship: Jessica Elish, Highland High School; Joshua Long, Purdue University (Griffith High School 2008)

Nancy J. Pinnick Memorial Scholarship: Abby Anderson, River Forest High School

Patrick Lindsey Memorial Scholarship: Shayla Austin, Hammond High School; LaVontecia Gist, Merrillville High School

Roger Begnoche Scholarship: Alexander Serrano of Munster High School

Sengupta Family Scholarship: Anna Kacius of Lake Central High School

W. James Spicer Scholarship: Benjamin Niksch, Wirt-Emerson Visual and Performing Arts Academy

Webster Cornwell Memorial Scholarship: Almadelia Aragon, Hammond High School

William J. Moran Indiana University School of Law Scholarship: John McKinlay, Indiana University School of Law (Andrean High School 1995)

For details about any of these scholarships, see Legacy Foundation’s Web site at www.legacyfoundationlakeco.org/scholarships. Lake County high school and college students are encouraged to check the site for information about available scholarship funds.

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Five exemplary Lake County students have been named recipients of the 2011 Legacy Scholarships by Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s philanthropic partner.

Each student was awarded a $2,000 scholarship toward tuition at the college of his or her choice. Selection was based on academic performance, demonstrated leadership skills, service to others, character, a written narrative, demonstrated financial need and an interview.

The 2011 Legacy Scholarship recipients are:

  • ·         Corrine Blackburn of Hobart High School
  • ·         Elaine Pitsas of Munster High School
  • ·         Shantell Smith of Roosevelt Career & Technical Academy
  • ·         Michelle Sopetti of Griffith High School
  • ·         Tyler VanLul of Calumet High School

“Legacy Foundation is a strong partner in supporting educational achievement of students throughout Lake County,” said Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer of Legacy Foundation. “We are proud to recognize the many accomplishments of these young people as they begin their promising college careers.”

Legacy Foundation manages more than 25 scholarship programs. Lake County high-school and college students are encouraged to check Legacy Foundation’s Web site for information at www.legacyfoundationlakeco.org/scholarships.

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