President Tom Kilian Jr. also debuts new vision at annual philanthropic celebration
Tonight at its annual Celebration of Philanthropy event, Legacy Fund, the community foundation for Hamilton County, announced a new name and a new strategic vision. President Tom Kilian Jr. told a crowd of more than 400 that the organization will become Hamilton County Community Foundation. He also introduced a direction for the coming years that includes a focus on mental health, family and youth empowerment, and inclusive economic growth.
“Our new name helps better express the foundation’s goal to build a community where opportunity meets growth for everyone, and philanthropic efforts support not-for-profit organizations doing vital work.”
Hamilton County Community Foundation was established in 1991 to address the specific needs in Hamilton County and to provide a broader opportunity for Hamilton County residents to create a living legacy and make an impact during their lifetimes, right in their neighborhood. In 1997, Hamilton County Community Foundation partnered with The Indianapolis Foundation to create the Central Indiana Community Foundation.
“We are excited to be Hamilton County Community Foundation. It feels true to who we are, who we serve and what we do,” said Kilian. “Our new name helps better express the foundation’s goal to build a community where opportunity meets growth for everyone, and philanthropic efforts support not-for-profit organizations doing vital work.”
The name change and strategic plan come after more than a year of community research and listening. Hamilton County Community Foundation’s new direction supports its new shared mission with regional affiliates, Central Indiana Community Foundation and The Indianapolis Foundation: To mobilize people, ideas and investment to make this a community where every individual has equitable opportunity to reach their full potential—no matter their place, race or identity.
“By aligning our mission with our affiliates, our combined efforts have greater strength and impact for Central Indiana,” said Kilian. “But we also know that Hamilton County has unique needs and look forward to partnering with local donors and not-for-profit organizations to advance this work and the community.”
Also at the event, Hamilton County Community Foundation awarded three Community Pillar Awards. Recipients were honored for their work in education, juvenile justice and tourism and were given $5,000 each to grant to a Hamilton County not-for-profit of their choice:
Judge Steven R. Nation of Hamilton County Superior Court awarded $5,000 to Hamilton County Youth Assistance Program, an early intervention program for at-risk youth and their families.
Freedom Kolb, special projects officer for Hamilton South Eastern Schools, awarded $5,000 to Child Advocates to enable Hamilton County residents to attend Undoing Racism Workshops at no cost.
Brenda Myers with Hamilton County Tourism awarded $5,000 to Hamilton County Leadership Academy to engage and alumni as a resource for not-for-profit capacity building in the community.
Ann O’Hara, Hamilton County Community Foundation board chair, said, “These individuals are living examples of Hamilton County Community Foundation’s values and vision for the community, as are the hard-working organization’s they’ve chosen to honor with grants.”