Eastern Colorado Community Fund surpasses $14 million

From Emergence, to Established, and now Expansion

The Eastern Colorado Community Fund was established in 2015 to connect the passions of donors with the needs of rural communities to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

In April, the board of the Eastern Colorado Community Fund, a component fund of the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado, recognized John Chapdelaine – its founding director – for his outstanding leadership in creating a respected, vibrant, and self-sufficient ECCF, and his dedication to investing in the future of its rural communities.

“All who were involved in creating the Eastern Colorado Community Fund understood its significance to the future of rural communities on the Eastern Plains, and we knew that the piece most critical to its success was identifying the right person to serve as director,” said Cindy Johnson, ECCF board member. “For the past four-plus years, John has traveled throughout the six counties of Northeast Colorado speaking with organizations, families, and individuals about the myriad of charitable opportunities made possible through the ECCF.”

“I believe the ECCF reached a significant milestone when it hit the initial $10M goal,” said Jim Hendrix, Foundation board member from Yuma County. It is a young organization, and it now will be self- sustaining, which is a remarkable achievement. Donors will have greater confidence in gifting to ECCF and the assurance that their gifts have long-term value.”

“John has shown amazing persistence in presenting the ECCF story to many organizations and individuals throughout Northeastern Colorado, and has become the ‘face’ of ECCF. The board looks forward to the future and to the response of our communities to a regional fund.”
Jim Hendrix, Foundation board of trustees

John firmly believes that the ECCF’s success has always hinged on the collaboration with and support received from the ECCF board and Foundation staff.

To learn more about the services provided by the Eastern Colorado Community Fund or how to leave a legacy, click here to download more information or call John at 970.580.1013.

John Chapdelaine

The Eastern Colorado Community Fund recognizes John Chapdelaine for his service to the greater good.

Northeastern Junior College Foundation partners with ECCF

“Northeastern Junior College Foundation is extremely pleased to have entered into an agreement with the Eastern Colorado Community Fund,” said Jim Smith, president of the Northeastern Junior College Foundation. “This collective venture will enable both entities to benefit – to use each other’s strengths to continue to fund the needed financial assistance in Eastern Colorado, to secure and grow those assets to provide educations for many students, and support other nonprofits well into the future.”

For over 40 years, the NJC Foundation has helped convert its generous donors’ assets into scholarships and grants to assist with improving the Sterling-based community college.

“The ECCF is proud to partner with the NJC Foundation as the exclusive manager of its endowment funds,” said John Chapdelaine, ECCF director.  “We look forward to working with the NJC Foundation’s staff and board to grow the endowment funds.”

“Our staff’s experience and expertise will provide services far beyond the usual investment advisor, as personal service is our Community Foundation’s hallmark,” explains Kristin Todd, president and CEO of the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado.

“We all need to be good stewards of the gifts given to us,” President Smith adds. “At this time, we believe we have greatly increased our ability to ensure that the legacies of many will be here for a long, long time.”

“ECCF and the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado will provide a sophisticated investment program, planned giving services, and enhanced regional recognition of the Northeastern Junior College Foundation’s work.”
John Chapdelaine, ECCF director

Joey Gerk

Joey Gerk, shown with his parents Dena and Rich, receives a Ruth Henderson Scholarship from John Chapdelaine.

Kaitlyn Houghton

Kaitlyn Houghton, Logan County Nurses Scholar.

Logan County Nurses and Ruth Henderson scholarship recipients

One important way Eastern Colorado supports its next generation is through college scholarships. Since its inception, the Ruth Henderson Scholarship Fund has awarded $589,097, and the Logan County Nurses Scholarship Fund has granted $114,000.

The Eastern Colorado Community Fund proudly announces it has awarded the following scholarships for the 2021-2022 school year:

Ruth Henderson Scholarship recipients:

  • Alisha Saylor, Sterling – plans to attend NJC, major in early childhood education. Wants to become a preschool or kindergarten teacher.
  • Joey Gerk, Haxtun – received his associate’s degree from NJC, graduated earlier in May and plans to attend the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley to pursue a career in teaching.
  • Tessa Frasco, Fort Morgan – planning to attend UNC and pursue a career in elementary education. Would like to teach in a rural school at the first-grade level.

Logan County Nurses Scholarship winners, all current college students pursuing a nursing degree:

  • Jessica Teter, Sterling – attending NJC. Currently works part-time at Sterling Regional Medical Center in the Emergency Department.
  • Lindsey Moos, Iliff – attended NJC and continuing to UNC to finish her BSN. Hopes to become a CRNA.
  • Nicole Barela, Sterling – attended NJC, looking to get her bachelor’s degree and eventually a doctorate. Would like to become a pediatric nurse practitioner.
  • Kaitlyn Houghton, Sterling – attending NJC as a second-year nursing student.

Sterling Community Fund Gala sponsorships available

Show your support for the Sterling Community Fund as hundreds of Logan County residents gather for “A Stroll in the Park” on Saturday, September 25, 2021, from 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. at the Logan County Fairgrounds Arena.

The Sterling Community Fund is an endowment, created by local residents as a long-term funding source, to support projects that make Logan County a more attractive place to live, raise a family, establish a business, and retire.

A Stroll in the Park logo

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