Laura Bush Foundation Grant To Barth Elementary Is Only One In PA

First Lady Laura Bush observes a fifth grade m...

First Lady Laura Bush observes a fifth grade math class at Lovejoy Elementary School in Des Moines, Iowa. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — Barth Elementary School has received a $5,000 grant from the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries, the only school in all of Pennsylvania to receive a grant from the former First Lady’s foundation.

Principal Ryan Oxenford was recently notified of the award.

In 2013, the foundation awarded over $1 million in grants to schools to update and diversify their library book collections.

“This is an incredible opportunity to expand the resources in our library.  The grant approval could not have come at a better time with the unveiling of our newly renovated library this fall,” said Oxenford.

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Lenfest Foundation Maps Out A Path To Its End

The Lenfest Foundation, one of the region’s last remaining powerhouse philanthropies, has undertaken a series of changes that will dramatically alter its leadership and mission, and effectively maps out a path to its end.

H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest has long said the foundation he and his wife, Marguerite, founded would spend itself down and cease to exist within 10 years of their deaths.  But Lenfest, 82, has decided to step down now as chairman. Philadelphia entrepreneur Keith Leaphart, 38, will complete Lenfest’s term as chairman through June 2015, heading a new eight-member board on which the Lenfests will remain members.

“We’ve decided to put the foundation into an independent board of directors, which I no longer control,” Lenfest said.  “I’m not in ill health.  I don’t believe in perpetual foundations.  We’ve given away the bulk of our wealth already, and I will have a diminished role in the future.  My success in business was finding people who were better at doing things than I was.  It’s a logical evolution.”

Since 2000, the Lenfests have given away slightly more than $1 billion through the foundation and personally, a foundation official said.

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Foundation For Pottstown Education Outlines 2013 Goals

POTTSTOWN — As 2012 wound down to a close, the Pottstown School Board got a glimpse of what 2013 may look like — at least in terms of the plans being made by the Foundation for Pottstown Education.

Executive Director Myra Forrest outlined for the board the eight major goals the foundation has set for itself in the coming year.

Here is a brief look at those goals.

• PEAK: The foundation wants to ensure continued funding for PEAK, which stands for Pottstown Early Action for Kindergarten readiness is Pottstown’s signature early education program. It partners with pre-schools and childcare providers to get youngsters read for school.

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Pittsburgh Foundation Bequeathed $20 Million

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The estates of identical twin sisters Jean and Nancy Davis — lifelong Pittsburghers who died within four months of each other at the age of 97 — and a former H.J. Heinz Co. executive and his wife have made two of the largest individual gifts ever received by The Pittsburgh Foundation.

The donations, announced by the foundation this week, include roughly $9 million from the Davises and $11.7 million from the late Junius Allen and his wife, Zella, who died last year at 103.  The bulk of the money is designated for the unrestricted use of the foundation, a nonprofit community foundation launched in 1945 with assets of more than $800 million.  The foundation awards grants to charitable groups in Pittsburgh and throughout the U.S.

The Pittsburgh Foundation’s largest individual donation, $50 million, came in 2010 from the late Pittsburgh chemical engineer Charles Kaufman.

“When we look behind these bequests, we see touching stories of deep affection for Pittsburgh and its people,” foundation CEO Grant Oliphant said.  “This is a great example of something that happens more frequently than we realize in Pittsburgh, where people who are born here leave an extraordinary gift to Pittsburgh.”

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