Foundation Timeline Highlights
October 1, 1973 Foundation Incorporated.
October 2, 1973 First meeting of Incorporators and Members, and first meeting of Board of Trustees. At this meeting, Dr. Wayne E. North was hired as Executive Director.
February 11, 1974 Agreed to participate in Greenbelt Project.
1974 $500,000 gift given by Macauley and Helen Dow Whiting Foundation to create Whiting Overlook Park as part of Greenbelt Project.
1974 Interlochen Arts Academy Scholarship Endowment Fund established.
1975 Willard Henry Dow and Martha Pratt Dow Memorial Educational Fund (student loan fund) moved to the Foundation (originally established in 1949).
1977 Washington Woods I opened.
1978 Foundation gave first scholarships: $2,460 in Interlochen scholarships; $500 from Unrestricted Endowment for a Northwood student.
1979 Moved offices from 115 Jerome to 117 McDonald Street.
1980 Helped fund beginning of Shelterhouse. Sponsored sports medicine seminar for youth sports coaches. Began work on the "Tridge" project. Tridge fund drive completed with $367,641 raised through community gifts to match $366,000 from the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation.
October 1, 1980 Firmin Paulus named Executive Director.
October 4, 1981 Tridge dedication.
1982 "Brown Bag It" concerts began, sponsored by the Music Society, the City of Midland and the Foundation. Also the Foundation funded the canoe livery near the Tridge.
June 29, 1982 Thrune Park dedicated, after being developed by the Foundation and designed by Design Craftsmen.
September 26, 1982 James Hopfensperger's "The Family" sculpture dedicated at the Tridge.
August, 1983 Restroom building at Midland County Fairgrounds built by the Foundation.
November 13, 1983 Washington Woods II groundbreaking.
November, 1983 Britton Memorial Fund established.
June 18, 1985 Whiting Overlook Park dedication.
July 18-21, 1985 First year of Riverboat on the Tittabawassee.
October, 1985 Washington Woods II dedicated.
May, 1986 Sharon L. Sims was hired as Financial Officer of the Foundation. She retired from the position of Vice President and CFO in November of 2000.
December, 1986 M. Gene Arnold was hired as Executive Director.
1987 Foundation relocated to the Pardee House.
July, 1987 Chippewa River Walk opened at the Tridge.
Fall, 1987 Permanent Santa House constructed.
December 1987 "A Walk Around Midland" coloring book, developed by Parsons and Maxson, distributed for the first time at the Santa House.
June 6, 1988 Pardee House dedicated to James T. and Elsa U. Pardee.
July, 1988 Playground completed at the Tridge.
October 8, 1990 Demolition began at the future site of Riverside Place, then called Washington Woods III.
1992 The Foundation met the challenge of the W. K. Kellogg Foundation to raise $2,000,000 in endowment funds for the Midland Area Community Foundation so we would receive $1,000,000 from the Kellogg Foundation to create the Midland County Youth Action Council (MCYAC).
September, 1992 Pere Marquette Rail-Trail construction began.
January, 1993 MCYAC Board met for the first time.
July 17, 1993 Pere Marquette Rail-Trail dedicated during RIVERDAYS '93.
April 18, 1994 Denise K. Spencer named Executive Director.
June 7-12, 1994 Fun Zone constructed at Plymouth Park.
August 20, 1994 Legacy Society developed.
September, 1995 Meridian Project Pride Fund opened.
May 18, 1996 Glockenspiel addition to the Santa House dedicated in a ceremony to launch the Dow Chemical Company's Centennial Celebration.
August 26, 1996 Passed significantly improved Investment and Spending Policies.
June, 1997 Central Auditorium Project Fund opened.
July 1997 "The Couple" by James Hopfensperger dedicated at the Tridge.
November 5, 1997 Detroit Pistons and Michigan Community Foundation's Youth Project State Youth Board presented MCYAC with the "Creative Community Service Award."
February, 1998 Midland Area Community Foundation web site opened at www.midlandfoundation.com
June, 1998 Hintz Park developed. Coleman Skating Facility Project Fund opened.
July 16, 1998 25th Anniversary Celebration of the Foundation during RIVERDAYS '98.
July 18, 1998 Aviation Education Center at Barstow Airport dedicated.
December, 1998 Five-year strategic plan adopted by Board of Trustees.
June, 1999 Broke ground for skatepark project in Chippewassee Park.
June, 1999 Dedication of Duck Hunters' Memorial.
June, 1999 "Preserving Community Character," Matrix:Midland event to kick-off Midland Visioning Project of the Foundation.
October 9, 1999 Dedication of Trilogy Skate Park.
May 16, 2000 Foundation members passed new Articles of Incorporation and bylaws. The main changes were to change the name of the organization from "The Midland Foundation" to "Midland Area Community Foundation," and to change and broaden the definition of Foundation membership. Service coverage expanded to include both Midland and Gladwin Counties.
September, 2000 Gladwin County Endowment Fund established, MACF's first expansion of services to Gladwin County.
November, 2000 Nicole B. Lomas (Charles) hired as Vice President and CFO to replace Sharon L. Sims.
February, 2001 The Gang and Violence Prevention Partnership of the MACF sponsored the first Week of Nonviolence that was held in area middle schools and high schools. Students participated in a variety of ways to spread the message of nonviolence.
September, 2001 Celebrated 20th Anniversary of the Tridge Dedication.
November, 2001 Brian Jackson, the Foundation's first Program Officer, was hired.
December, 2001 The Foundation moved its offices from the Pardee House at 812 W. Main Street downtown to 109 E. Main Street. We gained not only more space, but a handicap accessible facility. Additionally, a major software conversion was underway at this time.
2002 The Foundation Board spent the larger part of 2002 creating a new 5 -year Strategic Plan, setting new goals and revising other areas so that the Foundation may excell to even greater capacities.
May, 2002 The Foundation accomplished its first major grant guidelines change in many, many years. Our new process allows nonprofits to utilize an identical procedure for application whether they are applying through our Unrestricted Endowment Fund, or our other grantmaking opportunities: Gladwin County Endowment Fund, Midland County Youth Action Council, Healthy Youth/Healthy Seniors Endowment Fund.
August, 2002 The Clare County Community Foundation became an affiliate of the Midland Area Community Foundation.
August 8, 2002 Hintz Park donated to the City of Midland.
2003 The Entranceway Initiative Task Force (EITF) of the MACF completed a landscaping project at the Bay City Road/US 10 interchange and the Eastman South Entrance of the Midland County Fairgrounds. This was the first project of many to be completed by the EITF.
November, 2003 Brought The Bridgework Theater Troupe into 18 elementary buildings across Midland County to perform a positive message against bullying.
December, 2003 "The Glow of Giving," a new story book, was launched to replace the coloring book, "A Walk Around Midland," and will be used as a gift for Santa Claus to give to children as they visit him at the Santa House.
2004 Development of GladYAC, a Gladwin County Youth Action Council.
2004 Assets exceeded $50 million.
May, 2004 "Member Connections" was launched. This is a newsletter which provides frequent updated and general information for our members, and also shares new member benefits.
May, 2004 "Professional Connections" was lauched as both an e-mail letter and printed newsletter and is targeted to the professional financial advisors, estate planners, accountants, brokers, etc. serving the people of our service area.
June, 2004 Tara Kaminski, the Foundation's first Communications Coordinator, was hired.
June, 2004 Entranceways Initiative Task Force Brochure: "Money Does Grow on Trees" was printed and distributed.
July, 2004 Entranceways Intitiative Task Force completed the landscaping project at the North Entrance of the Midland County Fairgrounds.
July 4, 2004 Hosted t he USA Softball Women's National Team in a game against the Midland Lady Explorers held at Currie Stadium in Emerson Park. This was one of the last stops the team made before heading to the Olympic Games in Athens.
August, 2004 Entranceways Initiative Task Force completed the US-10/Eastman Overpass Medallions.
September, 2004 BMX Bike Park completed. This project was a gift to the community from MCYAC and the Board of Trustees as part of the Foundation's 30th birthday celebration in 2003.
December, 2004 A new storybook, "Bringing the Outside In" was launched as a gift from Santa to kids who visit the Santa House. This is a story dedicated to Alden Dow for what would be his 100th birthday.
2005 Community Priorities Initiative was implemented. The three priority areas include youth, economic impact and leadership.
Summer, 2005 Received notice that the MACF was in compliance with the Council on Foundations National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations.
June 28, 2005 New Chippewassee Park Playground opens.
July, 2005 The Midland Area Community Foundation became the second community foundation in the state to comply with Community Foundation Standards. This is a voluntary compliance with standards established by those of us in the community foundation field to assure the highest integrity in our operations and in the way we communicate with the public.
September, 2005 Entranceways Initiative Task Force completed the creation of a Park n' Ride Lot and landscaping at the Eastman Avenue Overpass.
October, 2005 Entranceways Initiative Task Force completed the creation of the US-10BR Boulevard walking path and landscape project.
December, 2005 Over 50% of unrestricted grant monies were distributed to grants that focussed on the priority areas of the Community Priorities Initiative.
December, 2005 A new storybook, "The Great Razzleberry Rescue" was launched as a gift from Santa to kids who visit the Santa House. This is a story dedicated to Carl and Esther Gerstacker in honor of the Tridge's 25th birthday.
2006 Health Care Initiative was launched.
Fall, 2006 Entranceways Initiative Task Force completed and distributed the Community Preference Book, the extension of the US-10BR Boulevard, and the Rail-Trail Connection behind Riverside Place to the US-10BR Boulevard trail.
October, 2006 MACF was awarded a $440,000 matching grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, coordinated by the Midwest Community Foundation Ventures. This grant is to be used to improve access to recreation for all individuals including those with disabilities.
November, 2006 mi-Vibe became a project of the Midland Area Community Foundation. December, 2006 Clare County Community Foundation reached $1 million in assets.
December, 2006 Became HR 4 compliant.
December, 2006 A new storybook, "The Quiet Gift" was launched as a gift from Santa to kids who visit the Santa House. This is a story of Charles J. Strosacker and the importance of giving back to your community.
2007 Entranceways Initiative Task Force completed the Wayfinding Signage project.
2007 The Midland Area Community Foundation selected Janet McGuire as the President and CEO.
2007 The Foundation began collaborating with the Bay Area and Saginaw Community Foundations, the Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation, as well as area medical facilities and educational organizations to implement a grant received from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Northwest Health Foundation. The project, Partners in Nursing, seeks to address the shortage in nursing staff throughout the region.
2007 The Foundation produced an updated version of the Children's coloring book for the Santa House. Thousands of copies of the coloring book were given away at the Santa House in 2007, giving children a gift that represented the places they see daily in their community.
2007 The Foundation purchased the former Community Drug Store Building at 76 Ashman Circle and began renovating the space for offices.
2008 Whiting Overlook Park was revitalized with new signs, trails, paving and plantings.
2008 The Foundation moved to 76 Ashman Circle.
August, 2009 A new spray park opened at the Midland Community Center as part of the Access to Recreation project.
August, 2009 Entranceways Initiative Task Force completed the M-20 project.
November-December, 2009 The Foundation created and provided puzzles with a picture of the Santa House on them to Santa House visitors.
2010 The Foundation added fireworks to the Annual Courthouse Lighting ceremony.
2011 The Foundation celebrated the 30th anniversary of the Tridge with a complete renovation of the structure and a party during RIVERDAYS. The railings were upgraded, electrical was upgraded, and new stain was applied. The base of the Tridge on the Farmer's Market side was upgraded as well.
2011 Received notification that it has met the nation’s highest philanthropic standards for operational quality, integrity and accountability. The notice comes from the Community Foundations National Standards Board, a national accreditation organization based in Arlington, Va.
What About Our Future?
The Board of Trustees, recognizing the complexities of today's world, and the challenges and opportunities which lie in front of us, have not only completed a comprehensive strategic planning process, but are currently operating under the second major revision of the plan. This process required that we look back at our roots, and ahead at what we wish the role of the Foundation to be in our community. We had included the community in our decision-making process, using focus groups to give us the valuable data we needed. We are excited about the result, and look forward to the work to be done over the next five years. And we will require, of course, the assistance of the community. We are, after all, borne of the community we serve, and we invite you all to join us in helping to promote the efforts that strengthen that self-same community. By supporting the Midland Area Community Foundation you can leave your mark on tomorrow, just as our founders did all those many years ago, and as have all the donors, volunteers, trustees and staff in each year since. Come join us, and help us move into a vibrant, vital and vigorous future!