Community Foundation holds annual celebration | News, Sports, Jobs


On Wednesday, the Marquette County Community Foundation held its annual celebration at the Northern Center. The celebration recognizes donors, businesses and funders who invest in the community each year. (Photo courtesy of the Marquette County Community Foundation)

MARQUETTE – The Marquette County Community Foundation held its annual celebration on Wednesday evening.

The event, held at the Northern Center on the Northern Michigan University campus, featured Catalyst award presentations, prize draws, special announcements and more.

“The community foundation is a membership organization, all donors and community members are members of this organization, so it’s a chance for us to have our annual meeting,” said Zosia Eppensteiner, CEO of the foundation. “What we do in addition to our business meeting is awarding several grants (tonight) as well as Catalyst awards that we give out each year, and we’re also making a pretty exciting announcement about the endowment. Jumpstart a Heart. As you know, we helped Marquette County law enforcement replace automated (external) defibrillators, 38 or 40 units needed to be replaced and we were able to raise the funds to do so which is about 85 $ 000 to replace all of those units that are needed right now. “

The Jumpstart a Heart program was launched in June by the community foundation and the Marquette County Law Enforcement Administrators Association. At the time, organizers were hoping to raise more than $ 81,000 for the new equipment, which was distributed to seven law enforcement agencies in the area. Some of the previous equipment was over 15 years old and needed updating.

Much of the funding was made possible through grants from the West End Health Foundation, the Frazier Fund, the Ray and Peg Hirvonen Foundation, the Superior Health Foundation, the Negaunee Area Community Fund, and the Marquette Area Community Fund.

“We want to thank all of our donors and supporters for providing this support, but in the meantime we have also realized that this is not a need that is going to go away,” said Eppensteiner. “New equipment will need maintenance, batteries wear out, pediatric electrodes as AEDs are worn out, or maybe even individual units will need to be replaced. With the support of anonymous donors, we were able to start a Jumpstart a Heart endowment fund. This fund will provide this support year after year and will continue to grow and be able to provide maintenance for this new equipment. “

Last year’s community foundation celebration was canceled due to the pandemic.

“Last year, due to COVID, we could not organize our event”, said Eppensteiner. “And we’re taking extra care with how tough everything is still with COVID. Last year our business meeting was virtual, so we weren’t able to gather and recognize our sponsors and journalists, so even in smaller numbers it’s exciting for us to reconnect with those who care. of the mission of the community foundation.

Four Catalyst Awards, which are individuals, organizations and businesses nominated by the board of directors of the community foundation, were also presented at the celebration. These awards “Recognize the efforts of those who help build community through volunteerism or philanthropy and inspire others to do the same” according to a press release.

Eppensteiner said the recipients of these awards will be announced next month.

New to this year’s celebration was the Range Bank Clean Energy Grant, which was established this year. “Help non-profit organizations invest in energy saving projects and education”. This award was presented to Lake Superior Lifecare & Hospice by Range Bank President and CEO Roxanne Daust. The funding will be used to carry out an energy efficient insulation project.

The Marquette County Community Foundation holds over 170 different funds that benefit worthy charities and charitable causes in the county. The non-profit, tax-exempt, state-supported philanthropic organization has a long-term goal of building permanent and endowed funds for the public good. The foundation was established in 1988 to work with donors to create charitable funds and support nonprofit organizations through various grantmaking efforts.

For more information, visit or call 906-226-7666.

Ryan Spitza can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 248. His email address is [email protected]

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