Celebrating 25 years!

Established in 1997, Community Foundation of Pulaski County...

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Since Community Foundation of Pulaski County's inception in 1997 with Northern Indiana Community Foundation, CFPC became independent in 2002.  Over the last 25 years there have been many milestones. What started with $$$ in assets has now become over $15M to enhance Pulaski County.

  • 1997 Arrowhead country rc&d - first fund

    Established in April of 1997 to provide funds for promoting improvement of the Arrow Head Country RC&D Area, Inc. It was the first of five endowment funds established that year.

  • 1997 Lau Estate creates two endowments

    Attorney John Kocher and President Mike O'Connor accepted a gift from Dennis Olson on behalf of the Pulaski County Public Library from the Milton and Eleanor Lau Estate. The gift was endowed to provide perpetual benefit to the Pulaski County Public Library.  The Town of Winamac also created the Winamac Park Fund endowment with a gift from the Lau Estate. 

  • 1998 first pulaski county lilly scholar

    Amanda Ward from West Central was Pulaski County's very first Lilly Endowment Scholarship Recipient.  Her parents are Roger and Sandra Ward. Amanda ranked first in her class and graduated from Purdue University.

  • 1998 lilly endowment gift phase iii  

    $900,000 in grants were awarded to Pulaski County through GIFT Phase III.  The focus was on:  Pulaski County Rural Recreation & Tourism Enhancement, Pulaski County Initiative for Technology, Thermal Imaging, and Monterey Volunteer Fire Department Station.

  • 2001 Pulaski county becomes independent

    Community Foundation of Pulaski County became independent in 2001 opening their first office in Winamac in 2002 with Executive Director, Doug Wilson and hiring part-time staff.

  • 2002 - $4.9 million cape ii education grant

    A $4.9 million CAPE II grant was received for providing educational programs for parents, teachers, children, students, and other adults. The Community Foundation formed the PACE organization (Pulaski Alliance for Community Education) to oversee the programs, and created an endowment for future educational grantmaking through PACE.

  • 2004 - $5.5 million in assets

    The Community Foundation had grown to $5.5M with 55 funds established to support local students, charitable causes, and local nonprofit organizations. 

  • 2007 celebrating 10 years and new office

    In 2006, CFPC moved a block over to Pearl Street celebrating 10 years in 2007. At this time, Wendy Rose became the Executive Director after serving as Doug's office assistant.  Sara Kroft was hired as the Scholarship Coordinator. 

  • 2008 - $5,000 grant to red cross for flooding

    Torrential rain flooded the fairgrounds and Winamac park causing damage to several homes.  CFPC offered assistance with a $5,000 grant to the Red Cross from the Pulaski County Care fund established by the Board for unexpected or emergency needs in the county.

  • 2010 - online scholarship process begins

    The Community Foundation purchased software in late 2009 to offer online scholarship and grant applications for the first time to graduating students and nonprofit organizations seeking support. 

  • 2012 - Our 15th year!

    To recognize CFPC's 15th year, the board set and achieved a goal of raising $15,000 to strengthen the Community Grants endowment.

  • 2013 - $25,000 awarded in community grants

    Nine organizations received a total of $25,000 for their community grant projects that supported arts, community development, education, health, and social services around the county.

  • 2015 - name change-vision-logo

    Art students from Winamac Community High School were given the opportunity to create a new logo for the Community Foundation in 2015. The logo shown was chosen and the Pulaski County Community Foundation (PCCF) was renamed to Community Foundation of Pulaski County (CFPC), putting "community" first and to better distinguish it from  other county organizations. 

  • 2016 - gift phase vi challenge

    Nearly 450 gifts were received during GIFT VI to raise an amazing $728,284. Along with Lilly Endowment's match of $500,000 a grand total of $1,228,284 was added to Community Foundation funds. More than $468,000 was dedicated for future community needs and projects to "light the future" for our county.

  • 2017 - marking 20 years!

    The Community Foundation celebrated big for its 20th year, holding its annual celebration at the Mill Creek Gardens mansion with close to 100 people in attendance.  Guest speakers included Marylou Bonnell and Mike O'Connor among other founders of the Community Foundation.

  • 2019 - gift phase vii initiative

    Lilly Endowment's GIFT VII Initiative included a planning grant for community conversations in 2019 to discover priority challenges and aspirations.  Four areas rose to the top:  Forward Thinking Leadership, Growing & Thriving, Welcoming & Open-Minded, and Safe & Drug-Free. The Forward Thinking Leadership Initiative was born from this and continues in 2022.

  • 2020 emil smolek - largest bequest received

    Ten years before his death, Emil Smolek created an endowment through a bequest in his Will. When the testamentary gift was realized, it totaled over $1.57 million to support his passions in life:  his church, public television, and scholarships for students majoring in ag-related or general studies.

  • 2021 forward thinking leadership

    The Forward Thinking Leadership Initiative took off in 2021providing opportunities to grow the community's leadership strengths. A 2.5 day Community Development Course was led by Ball State University and a steering committee formed to define areas of focus for community growth: Broadband, Housing, Downtown, and Recreation.  Positive steps have been taken through community partnerships and local support. 

  • Early years

    Pulaski County citizens gathered in 1994 to create our community foundation. For two years these leaders worked closely with a similar group in adjoining Starke County. In late 1996 both counties decided to become affiliates of the Northern Indiana Community Foundation (NICF), which consisted of Cass, Fulton and Miami counties.