January 31, 2017

Sarah Herring
Executive Assistant


Community Foundation Holds  

Grant Recognition Ceremony - 

Twelve Agencies Celebrated! 


Batavia, IL - The Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley held a Grantee Recognition Ceremony on Thursday, January 26, 2017 to honor its Fall 2016 grantees. The celebration took place at Water Street Studios in Batavia. The event recognized the twelve local social service, health, education and arts agencies that were approved a total of $131,604.00 in grants from the Community Foundation this past fall for various capital projects. 

Nearly fifty community members attended the ceremony including Community Foundation Board and Committee Members Mark Truemper (Chair), Austin Dempsey, Joyce Hemphill, Barbara Sergi, Scott Voris and the Mayor of Batavia, Jeff Schielke. Board members, executive directors and key staff of local agencies were recognized for their ongoing service to our community. 

Jeff Hartman
Jeff Hartman, Community Foundation President & CEO, spoke of the dedication the event's attendees have illustrated in our community. " Your support of these agencies is instrumental to the growth and success of the programs and services they provide," Hartman said.  " You care so deeply about your community that you give freely of your time, talents, and treasures to make the Fox River Valley a great place to live and work." 

Marty Luna
Other speakers included Marty Luna, Executive Director of Simply Destinee, a youth inspired dance team based in Aurora that promotes suicide awareness and fosters positive development in young people's lives. Luna gave a testimonial about the $5,300 Community Foundation grant Simply Destinee received in June 2016. The grant supported the agency with the purchase of new mirrors and other equipment in their new facility.  "We are so grateful for these grant dollars.  A mirror is more than a piece of equipment, it helps our students see themselves and recognize who they are and find their self worth and identify at such a critical time in their life.  This grant really is helping our youth in so many ways, "  L una said. 

Scott Voris
Scott Voris, Community Foundation board member and President of Kelmscott Communications, presented infor
mation about trends in the grantmaking program over the past five years. " Historically, the Community Foundation has received more applications from Aurora than any other city," Voris noted. "Over the past couple of years, since we expanded our presence in the Tri-Cities, we are seeing more grant requests from the Tri-Cities."   The Community Foundation expanded its presence in the Tri-Cities when it opened an office in Geneva in 2015. The agencies awarded grants this past fall provide services in over twenty cities throughout Kane, Kendall, and parts of DuPage County. 

Voris acknowledged each agency and outlined the projects the grants are supporting. These capital projects range from from technology and software needs to new appliances, playground equipment and instruments. Each agency was then presented with a certificate of recognition. 

The Community Foundation is grateful to Water Street Studios for graciously hosting the recognition ceremony at its facility. Jaime Gutierrez, facilities and events manager at Water Street Studios, was essential to setting up the gallery for this event. Danielle Hollis, Executive Director of Water Street Studios, spoke briefly about the agency's programs and their most recent Community Foundation grant.  "We are dedicated to increasing the presence of the creative arts in the Fox River Valley and making the arts accessible for all people," said Hollis.  Water Street Studios received a Community Foundation grant in May 2016 to assist in making their facility wheelchair accessible. 

Danielle Hollis speaks to fellow grantees.

We also offer a tremendous "Thank You" to all of our sponsors. The event would not have been a success without their generosity. A continental breakfast was provided to ceremony guests thanks to donations and discounts from the following local vendors:

Click here  to see a list of the agencies that were awarded grants and to view more photos from the ceremony.

For more information about the Community Foundation's Grantmaking Program, visit our website
Letters of Intent for the Spring 2017 Grant Cycle are available February 1, 2017.

About the Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley

The Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley is a non-profit, tax-exempt, philanthropic organization that administers individual charitable funds from which grants and scholarships are distributed to benefit the citizens of the Greater Aurora Area, the TriCities and Kendall County, Illinois.
Founded in 1948, the Foundation provides a simple and powerful approach to charitable giving. Individuals, families, businesses and organizations have the opportunity to custom design their own named funds that reflect their charitable goals and interests. Since its inception, the Community Foundation has grown to nearly $78 million in assets and has awarded more than $60 million in grants and scholarships.

For more information on the Foundation, visit