The goal of the Foundation is to increase the permanent endowment to $1 million. Already earnings have enabled the Foundation to fund college scholarships and to make grants to local charities serving Lakewood’s greatest needs. The following grants have been made that directly serve Lakewood charities, children and families.

2024 1st Quarter Financials


Beginning Assets, End of 4th Quarter: $1,350,045.46
4th Quarter Contributions: $   3,842.18
Earnings $  61,033.12
Grants $     1000.00
Investment Fees $   (581.84)
Banking Fees $    (37.28)
GTCF Fees: $  (2,810.35)
Expenses $    0
Ending Assets, thru 1st Quarter, 2024:



LCFF Founder Tom Sadler Passes Away


1970: Don Brink and Tom Sadler incorporated their accounting business in Lakewood called, unimaginatively but accurately, “Brink and Sadler”. (They were accountants after all, not prone to anything too flashy…..). I’m sure you have all driven by their business on 112th street, still going strong after 53+ years.


Today, Wednesday, February 21, 2024, Tom Sadler passed away at the age of 80 after enduring Parkinson’s Disease for several years.


After experiencing success in the business, Tom joined Lakewood Rotary in 1977, embarking on a lifetime of service to his community of Lakewood. He served as president of the club in 1989-90, leading with a smile, an easy laugh, and appreciation of fun. A departure for sure from the image of an accountant; but Tom was extraordinary. He was Chair of the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy in 2008-9 and was later named one of the “Top 100 Most Influential People in Accounting” by Accounting Today Magazine. Tom was good, very good.


Tom’s passion was boating. He didn’t stop at owning one, cruising and vacationing in it. He became a Certified Coast Guard vessel captain. He took a liking to delivering yachts to destinations up and down the west. He wasn’t content to spend time in the San Juans or Desolation Sound with The Yacht Club folks, he preferred the company of the Pacific Ocean and all the challenges of open ocean navigation.


But here comes the best part: in 1993, Tom helped found the Lakewood Community Foundation Fund (LCFF). For the next 25 years, he shepherded this endowment fund. Rotary, Lions, Kiwanis and others all raised money and gave it out. Tom’s idea in helping create this endowed fund was to have a community support vehicle that would help Lakewood forever. In 2019, in large part due to the hard work and focus of Tom, the LCFF reached the one-million-dollar mark (now over $1.2 M). This fund is now giving over $37,000 every year to benefit Lakewood and Lakewood only. This is Tom’s greatest legacy in the City of Lakewood.


Perhaps you only knew Tom from the sign on his building, Brink and Sadler. But you should now be aware of the impact this man made on our city. His friends and family will miss him dearly, but we are all heartened by what Tom has left behind. Thank you, Tom.


Grant Requests for 2024 Now Open

Endowed money available for grants this year will be between $35,000 and $40,000. Grant applications are now being accepted, with a deadline of April 5, 2024. Email to or mail to the LCFF PO Box 39578, Lakewood, WA  98496. Be advised that grants are only made to qualified 501(c)3 organizations with principal benefits to the citizens of Lakewood.

Click below for application form download

Please click here   Deadline: April 5, 2024

Larry Saunders Service Award Winner Announced

Ellie Wilson Wins 2023 Larry Saunders Community Service Award


Ellie Wilson wins the 2023 Larry Saunders Service Award

Eleanor “Ellie” Wilson has been blazing her trail with institutional and community landmarks for nearly fifty years. From graduation at San José State, the founding campus of California’s university system and earlier times of extensive teaching and travel, raising a family and guiding her children in creative stride through Clover Park Schools with PTSA, and legislative liaison for elementary education, she found time to welcome foreign exchange students to American life, offer tutoring assistance to dozens of children, lead levy funding campaigns for a decade, establish the Discovery Science curriculum for elementary grades, and help found Lakewood’s non-profit Communities in Schools. It’s little wonder industrious Ellie was honored by the award of Washington’s prestigious Golden Acorn in 1988. Added to Ellie’s record of civic achievement is her contribution to the successful incorporation of Lakewood. Recently, Ellie has applied her “can do” skills to provide organizational leadership for the Claudia Thomas Habitat for Humanity construction of affordable housing in Tillicum. Ellie’s vision and commitment have brought people and resource together with high purpose and lasting accomplishment over a half century of community service. Distinguished always by her calmness and courage, Elleanor Wilson has shown the way, that to attempt is to achieve. 


      Honoring Ellie’s community service interests, this year’s companion grant of $1,000 will go to Communities in Schools of Lakewood.   



a brief historical record

The first Larry Saunders Service Award, recognizing Diane Formoso for (Caring for Kids) service to community in 2017, was presented at the first regular City Council meeting of the new year following, 1/16/2018.



City Volunteer of the Year (believed named to honor LTG Wm H. Harrison, 2004 - 2007): 

  • 2004   Diane Formoso (Caring For Kids); 4/4/2005; CC meeting.
  • 2005   Mike Kanter (organized National Night Out events); 4/17/2006 CC meeting.
  • 2006   Sandy & Jean Mazzei, (clearing signs from utility poles): 4/16/2007 CC meeting.
  • 2007   Janne Hutchins, (LASA): 7/7/2008 CC meeting.
  • 2008 - 2013   No record of award.
  • 2014    City Council began a Volunteer Recognition Breakfast for civic volunteers,                     together with members of all Boards, Commissions and Neighborhood Associations

   (James Taylor); 12/3/2014.

  • 2015   Lakewood Volunteer Recognition Breakfast (Phil Raschke); 12/8/2015.
  • 2016   Lakewood Volunteer Recognition Breakfast (Vol/Yr Unknown); 4/17/2017 (?).


Larry Saunders Service Award

  • 2017   Diane Formoso (Caring For Kids) - Larry Saunders Service Award; first

   presentation 1/16/2018; Grant to Caring For Kids.

  • 2018   Rotary Club of Lakewood - Larry Saunders Service Award; second presentation       1/15/2019; Grant to Springbrook Connections.
  • 2019   J. Alan Billingsley, Clover Park Rotary; Larry Saunders Service Award; third    presentation 1/21/2020; Grant to (rehab project) South Puget Sound Wildlife Area.
  • 2020   The Selden Family, Lakewood Rotary; Larry Saunders Service Award; fourth presentation 1/19/2021, Grant to West Pierce CARES.
  • 2021   Doubled Larry Saunders Service Award; fifth presentation 1/18/2022, first award: First Mayor LTG Wm H. Harrison, Grant to Communities in Schools; and second award, and Grant to Partners for Parks.
  • 2022    McFadden Brothers; Larry Saunders Service Award; sixth presentation 1/17/2023, Grant to Oakbrook Swim & Tennis Club.
  • 2023    Eleanor “Ellie” Wilson, Larry Saunders Service Award; seventh presentation 1/16/2024; grant to Communities In Schools of Lakewood.    
  • 2024    TBD – Larry Saunders Service Award; eighth presentation 1/21/2025; grant to TBD.



Top Grants To Date (2023)


  2023 Total
Caring for Kids $5,000.00 $41,143.00
Park Pavilion, City of Lakewood $29,000.00
Clover Park Rotary $1,000.00 $1,000.00
EFN $5,000.00 $27,675.00
Communities in Schools $5,000.00 $28,268.00
Nourish Pierce County $5,000.00 $26,243.00
Greater Lakes Mental Health $5,000.00 $24,875.00
Lakewood Community Players $12,400.00
LASA   $12,068.00
Boys and Girls club   $11,500.00
Lions (Springbrook) $2,000.00 $11,768.00
Friends of Lakewold $6,600.00 $14,100.00
Centerforce   $7,100.00
Lakewood Baseball $3,000.00 $8,500.00
Kiwanis   $5,000.00
Partners for Parks   $5,000.00
Pierce College Foundation   $4,000.00
Operation Homefront   $3,500.00
CP Technical College   $2,000.00
Lakewood Arts Festival   $2,000.00
Making A Difference    $2,000.00
Network Tacoma   $2,000.00
Paint Tacoma Beautiful   $2,000.00
Pierce County Library   $2,000.00
St. Francis Cabrini   $2,000.00
St. Vincent DePaul   $2,000.00
Unfinished Mission/Rally Pt 6   $2,000.00
YMCA   $2,000.00
Raising Girls   $1,000.00
Rebuilding Together So Sound   $1,000.00
Habitat for Humanity   $700.00
Total $295,840.00 $37,600.00 $295,840.00