Foundation President Marianne Wiggers, Ed Sullivan, Executive Director, and Jascia Redwine, Associate Director will step down at the end of this year.
“Speaking for all three of us, I think I can say that our association with RSRF has been a terrific experience for these many years, especially in light of what the foundation has been able to achieve as compared to what was envisioned in mid-1996 when it was created and incorporated by then Rising Sun Mayor Mark, Guard, Monte Denbo, consultant to the city for the Grand Victoria Casino project, and Neil Comer, legal counsel to the City of Rising Sun at the time,” said Marianne Wiggers, the sole serving founding board member and elected president for the full 17 years of the foundation.
The following foundation achievements were highlighted at the board meeting:
• Awarding to date over $27 million in total grants, which have been instrumental in leveraging approximately $320 million in additional government, foundation, and personal contributions to over 1,300 grant projects in the region;
• Assisting in creating through both multi-year grants and staff technical assistance, four new community foundations in Dearborn, Ohio, Ripley, and Switzerland counties that already have and will continue to comprise a major philanthropic resource in the region for many years to come;
• Granting some $780,000 in personal $1,000 scholarships to graduating seniors of all of the schools in the RSRF region;
• Providing both professional consulting services and granting several millions of dollars for a very aggressive education technology program for all of the school corporations in the RSRF region;
• Awarding grants and providing professional consulting services in the program areas of both economic and retirement community development in Rising Sun and Ohio County;
• And, most recently, creating a unique economic development partnership with another local nonprofit organization, Rising Sun/Ohio County First, Inc., to which RSRF is providing an $8.2 million loan from its Reserve Funds to build and own a new 104-room hotel in Rising Sun that will be both opened next month and leased to the current casino owner, Full House Resorts, Inc., to increase the hotel room capacity by 50% of its Rising Star Casino.
Wiggers concluded, “I have been privileged to represent the Ripley County towns of Holton, Milan, Napoleon, Osgood, and Versailles on the foundation’s board and plan to continue both my work and my membership on several other nonprofit organizations in Ripley County for the foreseeable future.”