North Newton Community Foundation Honors Founding Member

Jim Goering, founding member of the North Newton Community Foundation, retires.

The North Newton Board expressed appreciation for his generosity and leadership throughout the years at their December board meeting when Goering’s retirement was announced. The following reflection from Goering was shared with the board and community via Facebook. Please read his encouraging words!

I am honored by your request for some reflections from me on the NNCF.

The NNCF had its origins in discussions in the office of John Torline, then North Newton City Administrator, during the summer of 2011. It was noted that several surrounding communities–Hesston, Hillsboro, Hutchinson and others, had created community foundations with seemingly positive experiences! John, based on his extensive experience with the Central Kansas Community Foundation (CKCF) emphasized the flexibility of the CF concept to accommodate diverse philanthropic interests of community members. The NNCF was legally established on December 11, 2011 and I became Board Chair shortly thereafter.

The first donation to the NNCF was a very thought and exceedingly generous gift in 2011 of $5,000 from Sher Klaassen Neufeld, then the North Newton City Clerk and now deceased. That donation was the financial base of the Sher Klassen Neufeld Endowment, now with a value in excess of $25,000!

The mission statement of the NNCF emerged from thoughtful deliberation by the first Board of Directors; It stated The NNCF supports efforts that enhance community well being through the expansion of educational opportunities, cultural enrichment and the improvement of human health and the physical environment!

Our first Board was also strongly influenced by the thinking of Andrew Carnegie, creator of the world’s largest foundation which bears his name, who noted that a foundation should have the goal of “…doing real and permanent good in the world” and that it should “…create ladders on which the aspiring can rise”!

My own thinking about my role as Board Chair derived from several sources, including one from the Good Book, viz. Luke 12:48: “To whom much is given, much will be required”! That bit of wisdom describes to a considerable degree my circumstances: I was given an opportunity to get a good education– from grade school through a PhD! I had a profoundly thoughtful father who once remarked to me, “Jim, I hope one of your objectives in life is to leave this world a bit better than when you found it!”

Over time I have been attracted to several quotes of wisdom, from the Good Book and elsewhere, which provided useful guideposts along life’s way! There was a quote from Helen Keller that true happiness in life does not result from the abundance of one’s material possessions; but rather, the extent to which one uses those blessings to assist those less fortunate. The words of Andrew Carnegie continue to resonate strongly, viz. “A foundation should do those things which are of real and permanent good and which create ladders on which the aspiring can rise!” Those are certainly worthy future guidelines for the NNCF!

In closing, permit me to share two more “wisdom phrases” that come out of the experiences Shirley and I have had in teaching English in Southeast Asia during the partial summers of 16 years! The first relates to our teaching in Vientiane, Laos in the summer of 2015. On this occasion I was saying good-bye on the last day of class of Laotian university students. It was a bittersweet occasion for me because I almost certainly would never see these courteous and committed students again! In these circumstances I was seeking some final words of guidance and encouragement, The phrase which came to mind, and which I shared with them, was, “The greatest fear of life should not be fear of failure; but, rather, of succeeding at things that don’t really matter!”

Now I fast forward to the summer of 2017. Shirley and I were teaching English to middle school teachers in Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia, in the far northeast of Asia. (A report of that summer’s experiences is attached.) During that unforgettable 5-week period of teaching the “aspiring teachers of the grasslands” we were housed in the temporarily vacant apartment of an American missionary on home leave!

Taped on the refrigerator door of the apartment, along with numerous Bible verses, was the quote of great profundity to me and perhaps others: “The purpose of life is not to arrive at one’s grave in a perfectly-preserved body! Rather, it is to slide in sideways, totally exhausted, and shout, “Holy Cow! What a ride!’ What a wonderful philosophy to guide us in our sunset years!

The North Newton Community Foundation will remain in my mind, my prayers and my plans! Thanks again for this privilege of sharing a meaningful segment of my professional career,

With admiration and respect,
Jim Goering

“In our era, the road to holiness necessarily passes through the world of action!” -Dag Hammarskjold, UN Secretary General; Nobel Peace Prize Laureate

Foundations in the Spotlight

Menocause: Ignite Valley Center Fund issued $23,250 in grants to 10 various community projects in Valley Center!

Hillsboro Community Foundation issued $25,400 in grants to 15 various community projects in Hillsboro!

Remington USD 206 was awarded a grant of $75,873.74 to support the Remington Wellness Center!

The charitable funds making these awards possible include:
Menocause: Ignite Valley Center Fund, Hillsboro Impact Fund, Hillsboro Community Foundation Arts Fund, Kansas Health Foundation Fund – Hillsboro, Marga Ebel Health Fund, and the Remington USD 206 General Endowment Fund (Klaassen Athletic Memorial).

Foundation is Hiring

Please see our Job Opening page for details about current openings. Click Here

Exciting opportunities to join our dynamic team that is helping donors fulfill their charitable intentions. An organizational partner in Central Kansas. Please share the opportunities.

Announcing the 2020 CKCF Scholarship Winners

Soar High Class of 2020 CKCF Scholarship Winners!

We are so excited to honor the 2020 achievement of the seniors throughout our service region – Congratulations!

Augusta Community Foundation

Willow Corliss – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $3,000.00

Jaiden Ingram – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $2,000.00

Jerica Mueller – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Ericson Brown – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Alexandria Nickel – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Kylee Crump – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Tyler Miller – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Tyler Dunbar – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Hunter Jones – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Jared Harder – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Mallory Parsons – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Andrew Vinson – Chelsea Gerbitz Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Adeline Whitlow – May Gruver Scholarship $850.00

Brice Helton – Vada-Vida Fletcher/Ketch Business Scholarship $850.00

Juan Miranda – Walter and Sidney Ewalt Scholarship $500.00

Central Kansas Community Foundation

Hayden Anderson – Seeds of Opportunity: Richard and Leah May Ross Memorial Scholarship $500

Hailey Gaynor – Seeds of Opportunity: Richard and Leah May Ross Memorial Scholarship $500

Kylie Litavniks – Andover Area Chamber of Commerce Scholarship $250

Isabel McNulty – Andover Area Chamber of Commerce Scholarship $250

Essie Juaraz – Margaret L Smith Decker Scholarship $700

Douglass Community Foundation

Dakota Tireman – Jeremy Allen Taylor Memorial Scholarship $1,000.00, Rusty Allen Inkeelar Scholarship $1,000.00

Grace Huynh – Terry Lee Kaylor Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Jayden High – Dellsea Nachbor Memorial Scholarship $1,000.00

Koby Campbell – Jeremy Allen Taylor Memorial Scholarship $1,000.00

El Dorado Community Foundation

Caleb Hinck – Wayne Willis Scholarship $2,000.00

Clement Huffman – Wayne Willis Scholarship $2,000.00

Erin Wranosky – George Trimble Special Need Scholarship $1,625.00

Garrett Meyer – George Trimble Special Need Scholarship $1,625.00

Grayson Coulter – Wayne Willis Scholarship $2,000.00

Hallie Yeubanks – Clifford and Rubye Angleton Scholarship $1,500.00

Hannah Reynolds – Clifford and Rubye Angleton Scholarship $4,000.00

Jake Johnson – George Trimble Special Need Scholarship $1,625.00

Janae Totty – Jenny Sundgren Baker Memorial $500.00

Elk County Community Foundation

Daniel Hernandez – Ernest Frank Horn, Jr Endowed Scholarship $500.00

Jaymee Cunningham – Jim and Steve Cummingham Nursing Scholarship $1,000.00

Fredonia Area Community Foundation

Cooper Odell – Fredonia High School Class of ’63 Legacy Project Scholarship $1,500

Brenna Moya – Fredonia High School Class of ’63 Legacy Project Scholarship $1,000

Allison Funk – Fredonia High School Class of ’63 Legacy Project Scholarship $1,000

Goessel Community Foundation

Alexandria Nickel – JNCCC Scholarship $700

Halstead Community Foundation

Kaleb Black – Charlsen Insurance Agency Scholarship $500, Rupp Lawson Scholarship $1,000, USD #440 Alumni Scholarship $500, Nightingale Family Scholarship $1,500, Fleetwood Scholarship $2,000

Kaden Kraus – Rupp Lawson Scholarship $1,000, Fleetwood Scholarship $2,000

Briana Winkel – Charlsen Insurance Agency Scholarship $500, Fleetwood Scholarship $2,000, Delores Sexton Scholarship $750

Harley Lang – Halstead Public Service Scholarship $1,000

Brian Weber – Fleetwood Scholarship $2,000

Jerica Mueller – Fleetwood Scholarship $2,000

Hesston Community Foundation

Benjamin Roth – Excel Industries, Inc. Scholarship $1,000, G51 Scholarship $1,000, Donna Schadler Scholarship $500

Mason Bradley – Excel Industries, Inc. Scholarship $1,000

Hailey Walter – G51 Scholarship $1,000

Mackenzie Martin – G51 Scholarship $1,000

Hillsboro Community Foundation

Jacob Denholm – C.M. Sextro Memorial Math Scholarship $2,000.00

Cassie Meyer – Earl Wineinger Memorial Scholarship $500.00

Morgan Gaines – Rod’s Tire and Service & Firestone Agriculture Solution Scholarship $1,000.00

Maddy Daniels – Free Press/Joel Klaassen Journalism Scholarship $500.00

Newton Community Foundation

Ashley Salgado – Brian Arellano Scholarship $1,000, Newton Lions Club Scholarship $1,000, Snapp Family Scholarship $1,200

Cattie Arrowsmith – Bonnie Selanders USD 373 Scholarship $1,150

Mariah McDonald – Denise Lynn Oursler Memorial Scholarship $500, Newton Area Women of the Year Scholarship $1,000, Snapp Family Scholarship $1,200, Katherine Hanna Education Trust Endowment Scholarship $750, Vince Garcia Community Service Scholarship $500

John Jantzen – E.S. Sanders Scholarship $1,700

Joshua Kennell – Snapp Family Scholarship $1,200

Eli Regier – Jean and Virginia Coleman Music Scholarship $1,170

Jayden Anton – Nygaard Family Scholarship $850

Hanna Brown – Nygaard Family Scholarship $850

Peabody Community Foundation

Marcus Sanders – Peabody United Methodist Church Scholarship $800.00

Morgan Gaines – Peabody United Methodist Church Scholarship $500.00

Jerica Mueller – Keith and Marilyn Harsh Scholarship $1,000.00

Remington Area Community Foundation

Abigail Entz – Edna and Mae Mertz Scholarship $1,350.00

Alexis Mersman – Novalis “Nick” or Pauline Toews Scholarship $500.00

Cassandra Wedel – John Edwards Scholarship $100.00

Hannah Johnson – Pat Halabi Memorial Scholarship $500.00, Edna and Mae Mertz Scholarship $250.00

Leslie DeLaRosa – Tina Jo Wedel Burton Scholarship $500.00, Edna and Mae Mertz Scholarship $750.00, Larry Brown Memorial Scholarship $100.00

Maximus Reese – RD Allen Scholarship $250.00

Shelby Henley – Edna and Mae Mertz Scholarship $1,250.00, Keith Sommers Scholarship $100.00

Valley Center Community Foundation

Joshua Dessenberger – Riley Greenwood Memorial Scholarship $300.00

How about another look?

We have broken down our awards by the dollar amounts originating in each county!


#ckcfaffiliates #ckcfdonors #ckcf

CKCF Public/Private Partnership with Harvey County Commission Commendable

In March, the Harvey County Commission in coordination with County Administrator Anthony Schwartzendruber, took decisive action to partner with Central Kansas Community Foundation, giving a donation in the amount of $50,000 to support the citizens of Harvey County during COVID-19.

Harvey County has placed trust in the Foundation to seek out need among residents and be the response entity for charities, thereby reducing the burden of government. The Foundation has opened a grant cycle specifically for Harvey County COVID-19 relief efforts and have to date, funded nearly $25,000 in grants to charities. Projects include securing PPE for front-line workers, providing for food and sanitation supplies, assistance for telemedicine establishment and assisting with increased administrative needs among charities in Harvey County.

By investing in the Foundation’s work, the Commission has essentially made all taxpayers in Harvey County partners in COVID relief work.  Every citizen has an investment in reaching their most vulnerable friend and neighbor – something to be very proud of.

For more information on how the Foundation and the Harvey County Commission are working together, check out our COVID-19 Reponse Page.

Our Partners: Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk & Lloyd

Throughout the years, we have put down roots in the communities we serve and are honored to grow our communities alongside valued and trusted community partners. The following series features businesses and individuals who have stood by our side in serving our mission to build stronger communities through charitable giving. Thank you dearly for being partners in our charitable work – it wouldn’t be possible without your friendship and financial support.

This week, we honor Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk & Lloyd, for their commitment to helping us serve our charitable mission in Central Kansas.


On behalf of the Board of Directors, our staff wishes you a very Happy Holiday season! We are fortunate to work with you to fulfill your charitable passions and create vibrant and strong Central Kansas communities.

For those interested in making a tax-deductible donation to the Foundation, don’t wait until the last minute! Our holiday hours are posted below.

OPEN 9AM – 4PM – Dec 23, 26-27, 30
OPEN 9AM – 12PM – December 31
CLOSED December 24-25, January 1

If you have questions about our hours or need help making your 2019 tax-deductible donation, please contact Melinda Newell at or 316-212-1918.


Celebrating Walter Claassen

JOIN US As we celebrate the legacies of our donors.
Learn more about how you can creating a lasting legacy and
continue to grow your community for generations to come.

10A – 1P
301 N MAIN, SUITE 200
NEWTON, KS 67114

Walter Claassen

Recently Walter’s daughter met with Angie Tatro, CKCF Executive Director, she shared the pride Walt had for the Newton Community. It was always clear to her that he wanted to make a difference not only for his own family but for others as well.

In 2006 Walter established 3 funds with the Foundation:

In memory of his daughter Susan he established:

  • Susan Claassen Endowment for the benefit of  the Hesston Intergenerational Child Dev Center Inc. Helping Children in our area.
  • Susan Claassen Nursing Scholarship for the benefit of nursing students at Hesston College. Promoting higher education for a caring profession.

In memory of his wife Helen he established:

  • Helen E. Claassen Endowment for the benefit of the Newton Library. A desire for a facility and resources that pace with broad access to knowledge.

Because of Walter’s vision for investing in meaningful causes through establishing endowments, nearly a $250,000 in charitable grants have been distributed to the 3 entities identified above since 2006. While these funds also maintain a collective balance of half a million in assets.

The true magic is these charitable causes will receive gifts in memory of Susan and Helen in perpetuity. We are delighted to further recognize the legacy Walter Claassen left through the establishment of these heartfelt gifts.

For more information on the life of Walter Claassen, CLICK HERE!

Celebrating Marie Haun

The estate of Wichitan L. Marie Haun left a gift of over $620,000 to Central Kansas Community Foundation. This gift, as requested by Haun in her estate plan, will be used to create the “Lena Marie Haun Charitable Fund for Children.”

Haun, who passed away in March of 2011, had a particular interest in child welfare issues, behavioral research, teaching parenting skills, and strengthening families.  Her endowment is expected to generate more than $30,000 annually.  A competitive grant cycle for these funds will be available beginning in 2013 for organizations providing children’s services in Central Kansas.

Near the end of her life, Marie’s financial advisor considered her charitable wishes and expressed the value of planned giving through the foundation. Marie ultimately chose to entrust the foundation with her gift because of the flexibility her gift would have through our oversight of a competitive grant cycle  that would ensure her core values for child welfare would be considered.

“Donors like Marie understand the positive impact a gift like this can have today — and for generations to come,” said Sandi Fruit, Executive Director of the Community Foundation. “We appreciate the confidence she placed in our Foundation to manage this gift to the children of Central Kansas.”

Haun began her career as a teacher at Whitewater High School and clearly had a love for children. Throughout her professional life, she held several secretarial positions. After moving to Wichita with her family, she worked as Secretary to the Chief of the Wichita Police Department. Then she went on to a 26-year career as the secretary to the Dean of the College of Health Professions at Wichita State University. Retiring in 2000 at the age of 78, Haun was no stranger to hard work.

Haun was born to Homer and Marguerite (Mead) Hood in Carmen, Oklahoma, on March 8, 1922. During her childhood, Marie moved with her parents and sister Dorthy from Carmen to Missouri, Wyoming, and back to Oklahoma. Marie graduated from high school in Carmen and then earned a baccalaureate degree that prepared her for teaching. She taught business at the Whitewater High School just before she met her future husband, Paul Haun (brother of the late Howard Haun of rural Newton). They married on December 23, 1948 and had one son, Larry Kent, in 1950.