Foundation Supports ‘My Heart in a Suitcase’

The Westfield Foundation provided funding to the ArtsPower National Touring Theatre for the presentation of My Heart in a Suitcase, a true life play about the Kindertransport in Germany just prior to World War II.  Multiple performances were held at Roosevelt and Edison Intermediate schools in Westfield, for all of the 6th and 7th graders in the district.  The compelling performances were very well received by all of the students.  Pictured are the cast members, Betsy Chance, Executive Director of the Westfield Foundation, and Mr. Sig Silbur, a survivor of the Kindertransport.

The cast of My Heart in a Suitcase with Westfield Foundation Executive Director, Betsy Chance and Sig Silbur, a survivor of the Kindertransport.

The cast of My Heart in a Suitcase with Westfield Foundation Executive Director, Betsy Chance and Sig Silbur, a survivor of the Kindertransport.

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Public Invited to 38th Annual meeting of Westfield Foundation

Westfield – The Westfield Foundation will be holding their 38th annual meeting on Thursday, May 9 at the Westfield Memorial Library, 550 East Broad Street at 7 pm. This meeting is an opportunity for the general public to come and hear how the Foundation makes a difference to Westfield and the surrounding communities.  This year’s guest speakers will be previous grant recipients Barbara Kopel, Central Regional Director, Emmanuel Cancer Foundation and Karen Olson, President, Board of Directors, Family Promise

The annual meeting is a recap of the Foundation’s accomplishments the previous year, as well as recognition of retiring Foundation trustees.  Three retiring trustees of the Foundation will be recognized for their service the past six years: Donnell Carr, who has served as Secretary of the Board and a member of the Grants, Legal, Scholarship and Policy committees; Larry Goldman, who has served as a member of the  Grants, Investment and Legal committees; and Ann Robinson, who has served as a member of the Grants committee and as Chair of the Nominating committee. 

Additionally, three new Foundation Trustees will be welcomed, Mitch Beinhaker, Karen Fountain and Janet Sarkos.   The new Executive Board for 2013-14 will be William Foley (President), Richard Coltrera (Vice-President), Alice Fertig, (Treasurer) and Howard Cohen, (Secretary).

The Foundation hopes you will be able to join them at this meeting.  

1st Quarter Grants for 2013 Announced

Westfield – This summer, Westfield youth will be able to attend camp in Pennsylvania, regardless of financial ability, due to a grant for the scholarship fund for Camp Speers-Eljabar.  The camp, as well as 5 other community services, was granted funds totaling $38,224 for the first quarter, 2013. Projects include the West 7th Street Village project, support for musical concerts, a youth empowerment services program, and a caregivers’ respite program.

The first quarter recipients include: Oratorio Singers of Westfield, the Westfield Symphony Orchestra, Camp Speers-Eljabar YMCA, Alzheimer’s Association, Youth and Family Counseling Services and Habitat for Humanity.

The work of the Foundation can only be fulfilled due to the donations of the community.  The Foundation quietly runs an appeal drive at the end of the year.  This year, almost $30,000 was raised for the unrestricted fund.  Additional donations were collected, for donor advised and memorial funds, in the amount of $382,000.  One of the largest contributions was from the estates of Lydia E. Hoffart.

The Foundation encourages creating an individual family fund, which makes it possible to leave a permanent legacy for your philanthropic interests.  You can build a lasting legacy and perpetuate the name you select for the Fund.

Mary Robinson, the Founder and Executive Director of Imagine, spoke to current and former trustees at the annual cornerstone meeting in December.   Imagine is a year-round grief support center for children and adults located in Westfield.  Imagine received a $15,000 grant in early 2012, which was ear marked as seed money for the start up of Imagine.

Mary Robinson, the Founder and Executive Director of Imagine, spoke to current and former trustees at the annual cornerstone meeting in December. Imagine is a year-round grief support center for children and adults located in Westfield. Imagine received a $15,000 grant in early 2012, which was ear marked as seed money for the start up of Imagine.

Alice and Bob Dillon Honored for Service

Westfield- The Westfield Foundation honored Alice and Bob Dillon at their annual Cornerstone breakfast, held in December at ELCC.

Bob Dillon, who passed away in May 2012, and Alice were honored not solely for their work with the Westfield Foundation.  The Dillons were involved with many organizations in the area, including the United Fund, Overlook Hospital, the Westfield Library, Westfield Senior Citizen Housing, and New Jersey Connect, to name a few.

Foundation President Bill Foley noted, “We honor what they have done, not with a plaque or a breakfast, but by accepting the torch they are now passing to each of us to work for the common good.  Alice and Bob understood that to make sense of ourselves in this community, this country, we must start with the idea that we are not alone, nor are all of our choices about what we want.  There is a middle ground, habits of the heart, where we voluntarily dedicate ourselves to the service of others.”

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Alice Dillon receives a memorial plaque from Bill Foley. Children Julia and Bob attended the event with their mother. Betsy Chance, Executive Director of the Foundation, looks on as the audience shows their appreciation for the Dillons.

Lee Hale and the Westfield Foundation

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Lee Hale

In late January, the community of Westfield lost a leader among men, Lee Hale. Lee was a committed individual to many organizations throughout the area. Lee was ‘ Mr. Westfield’ for all he has done in and around the Westfield community throughout the years.   For us here at the Foundation, Lee will be remembered as one of the Foundation’s greatest champions.

Lee was a community leader of the old school; far more concerned about what he did than who knew about it.  He was a Westfield Foundation Board member from 1989 until 1995, and served as President from 1993-1995.  Lee was considered such a valuable member of the Board due to his vast community knowledge and financial expertise.

Lee leaves behind a storied legacy in the Westfield community.  He loved the Westfield Community and was committed to preserving its history and honoring its heroes.    He was a major supporter of converting the Reeve House into a museum for the Westfield Historical Society. He spearheaded the Westfield Athletic Hall of Fame, which biennially inducts some of Westfield’s most accomplished athletes.  More recently, he established the Westfield Hall of Fame to recognize the great figures in our community’s past.

Lee’s legacy continues.  In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that memorial donations be made to the Lee M. and Anne M. Hale Fund held here at the Foundation.  We are honored to be the gatekeepers of these funds.   Once the funds are collected the family will direct how they are to be disbursed, in line with Lee’s many interests here in town.

Lee will be remembered as a doer and his legacy will live on for generations.

“You are what you do, not what you say you’ll do.”
C.G. Jung

Click here for Mr. Hale’s obituary.

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4th quarter Grants announced

The Westfield Foundation continues to give back to Westfield and its surrounding community by approving more than $32,000 in grants funds. Projects include emergency relief due to super storm Sandy, musical performances, improvements to homes for the disabled, job training and scholarships.
The fourth quarter recipients include: Community Access Unlimited, NJ Intergenerational Orchestra, St Joseph Social Service Center, Union Count College Foundation and the Westfield Food Pantry.  For 2012, the Foundation granted $225,000 to 42 area programs and agencies in the areas of social services, the arts, education, health and civic needs.
Tax-deductible donations made by local residents allow the Foundation to keep thriving and giving back right at home.  The Foundation’s funds are professionally invested and the income generated is granted to carefully screened applicants throughout the year.
If you wish to donate to the Foundation’s current annual, or need more information about the Westfield Foundation, please contact Betsy Chance, Executive Director, by email: foundation@westfieldnj.com or by phone: 908-233-9787.
Below: The Westfield Foundation made an unsolicited donation of $10,000 to the Westfield Food Pantry, located at Holy Trinity Interparochial School.  The Food Pantry lost power for a week following the storm and the pantry lost perishable food in their refrigerator and freezer.
Pictured: (l to r): Foundation trustee, Ray Kostyack, volunteers Bill Crandall, Tom Conheeney and Dick Gottlick.

Pictured: (l to r): Foundation trustee, Ray Kostyack, volunteers Bill Crandall, Tom Conheeney and Dick Gottlick.

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