Fall 2023

From Our President

Our 30th year is a wonderful time to reflect on the successes of our past and look forward to what’s to come. You, our donors and volunteers, have contributed so much to the Women's Endowment Fund's success over the years. The most exciting news is that, together, we've changed so many lives by believing in our mission, vision and guiding principles. As we continue to celebrate our 30th year, here are a few highlights from 2023.

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Save the Date for Our Annual Celebration

Mark your calendar for "For Women, Forever," the Women's Endowment Fund's annual celebration. Next year's event will take place on April 18, 2024, at House Three Thirty.

Guests will enjoy connecting with one another, a variety of foods prepared by Michelin Star chefs, and a keynote presentation by Dr. Lindsay Kite and Dr. Lexie Kite, leading experts in the study of body image and the harmful effects of objectification. That evening, the Women's Endowment Fund will also honor Barb Greene, founder of CommonGood Consulting Inc., with the 2024 Judith A. Read Tribute Award for Service & Advocacy for Women.

This event has sold out for the last several years, so we encourage you to secure your reservation soon by becoming a sponsor. To learn more about sponsorship opportunities, contact Affiliate Fund Event & Volunteer Coordinator Malia Rivera at mrivera@akroncf.org.

A Look Back at the Circle of Empowerment Annual Gathering

We were so delighted to see those of you who were able to attend our Circle of Empowerment gathering at the new House Three Thirty in August. Just as the Women's Endowment Fund uplifts women and girls through our grantmaking, we joined together to uplift one another and to celebrate the circle surpassing our goal of 106 members.

As of early October, we have grown to 112 members who will annually contribute $155,500 to the fund. Our next goal is to reach 200 members to coincide with Akron's bicentennial celebration.

If you or someone you know would like to join the circle, please contact Deb Hoffman at dhoffman@akroncf.org or fill out the pledge form. Our giving circle is open to anyone!

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Welcome, New Board Members

Please join us in welcoming the fund's two newest advisory board members.

Betsy Engels

President and Principal Consultant,

Acer Business Consultants

CJ Haines

SVP of Power and Governmental Affairs,

Core Scientific

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Highlights From our Biennial Forum on Women and Girls

The Women's Endowment Fund held its biennial Forum on Women and Girls on Friday, Sept. 15. This year's event, titled "Women, Work & Wealth Creation," focused on economic empowerment, one of the Women's Endowment Fund's three current funding priorities. The forum featured industry experts discussing collaborative solutions for the economic empowerment of women post-pandemic.

Team NEO presented highlights from its Lost Opportunities report, and ConxusNEO presented highlights from its Where are the Workers report. The forum concluded with Discussion Circles facilitated by Project Ujima, a past grant recipient. This year's forum was attended by a record number of participants, allowing professionals from diverse backgrounds to share their experiences in the workforce.

Key themes that emerged from the Discussion Circles included:

  • Wealth is different to different people. It's not always glamorous; sometimes it's just having enough to not live paycheck to paycheck.

  • Women value flexibility and freedom in their schedules in the workplace, no matter what field they're working in. Part of the reason for the increased interest in entrepreneurship is because it allows for more freedom and flexibility.

  • We need to continue to break stereotypes and provide mentorship to attract more young women to STEM fields.

  • Men need to be engaged in dialogues about women's economic empowerment if meaningful change is to be achieved.

Outcomes from this year's event will help direct the fund's future grantmaking efforts.

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Join Our Giving Circle

In 2018, the Women’s Endowment Fund created the Circle of Empowerment to maintain continued sustainability of the fund and increase its grantmaking impact each year. The Circle of Empowerment is a special group of donors who support the Women’s Endowment Fund with an annual leadership gift of $1,000 or more. In 2022, the fund introduced a four-tier model for the Circle of Empowerment: Empower - $10,000, Uplift - $5,000, Inspire - $2,500, and Support - $1,000.

Donors to our Circle of Empowerment receive:

  • Special recognition at our events, including being listed in all event programs and marketing-related materials
  • Advance First-to-Know communications about our fund’s latest news
  • An invitation to our annual Circle of Empowerment gathering
  • The knowledge that their gifts uplift women and girls in our community now and forever

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Mark Your Calendar

Grant Application Deadline

If your nonprofit organization has a program that improves the health, safety or economic empowerment of women and girls, be sure to submit your grant application by Nov. 1. Preference is given to organizations that collaborate with others, and efforts to obtain matching funds are encouraged. Apply online at akroncf.org/applyWEF.

Year-End Giving

This holiday season, a gift to the Women's Endowment Fund is the perfect way to honor a friend, family member or colleague while making a difference in the lives of local women and girls. Last-minute gifts can be made online until midnight on Dec. 31 for the 2023 tax year. For gifts of stock, we recommend initiating transfers by Dec. 11 to ensure year-end processing.

Thank you to the generous donors who contributed to the Women's Endowment Fund from June 23 to Sept. 30, 2023. Your gifts will uplift and empower women and girls in our community for many years to come.

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From cash to mutual funds and retirement assets to real estate, there are many ways to give to the Women's Endowment Fund.
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Follow Us on Social Media

Follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn to see the latest updates about our fund. It's the best way to stay up to date on our giving campaigns and see how your donations support women and girls in our community.

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