About the Lakewood Community Foundation Fund

The Lakewood Community Foundation Fund was created in 1993 as a 501 (c)(3) charitable organization by the Lakewood Rotary Club and the Clover Park Rotary Club to address critical needs in Lakewood and to serve Lakewood residents more directly, especially its neediest. The Rotary clubs wanted to be more Lakewood oriented in their charitable efforts, and all the money raised benefits Lakewood organizations and citizens.

The Foundation’s goal is to establish a $1 million endowment in order to fund projects and scholarships to benefit children, families and charities in Lakewood. The $1 million endowment should generate $50,000 or more each year for grants to deserving students and charities that work to meet the needs of Lakewood’s low-income population.

In 1999, the Foundation received a remarkable gift from Lakewood resident Marianna Shaw before her death from cancer. Widowed the previous year, one disabled son already deceased and another cared for in perpetuity through a trust, Marianna directed her Executor to divide her remaining estate equally to serve four areas: her church, her late husband’s alma mater, cancer research, and her community.

Neither well-to-do nor well known in Lakewood, Marianna left the surprising sum of $85,000 to the Lakewood Community Foundation Fund. She was confident that this relatively unknown organization would make good choice about how best to serve her fellow Lakewood residents, especially the neediest.

Since Marianna’s gift in 1999, the Lakewood Community Foundation Fund has received several gifts of $50,000 or more, along with countless smaller donations, raising the current asset value to over $800,000.

To date, the Foundation has made more than $125,000 in community grants,$25,000 in student scholarships, and facilitated more the $300,000 in specific community projects .

The Foundation Fund is governed by a nine-member board of volunteer directors: three from Lakewood Rotary Club, three from Clover Park Rotary Club and three community representatives.

The Lakewood Community Foundation Fund operates with an expense ratio of less than two percent.  This low operating ratio is far better than the median expense ratio among all charities, which is 9.6 percent, according the Charity Navigator.