The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County logo
October 2019 Edition
"There is no power for change greater than a community discovering what it cares about." 
~ Margaret Wheatley, author & management consultant

Dear Members of The Community Foundation Family,

Last month we hosted more than 700 community members at the 17th Annual Women's Legacy Fund Luncheon at the Alex Madonna Expo Center. Looking out at our compassionate audience members from the stage, there was so much positive energy and goodwill emanating from our attendees. If there is one thing to be said about our community members it's that we have a large number of individuals and companies that truly care about making San Luis Obispo County the best that it can be. 

In this newsletter I'm happy to share important updates. Our new "Community Foundation Voices" series will highlight a variety of partners that our Foundation works with each and every day. This month we are pleased to highlight Dr. Anneka Scranton. Anneka is a Donor Advised Fund holder, a member of our grant making committee and an active philanthropist.

We also have information about the upcoming Professional Advisors Annual Luncheon to provide a multitude of options and the best service to their clients, our support of the National Philanthropy Day luncheon on November 15, and how to make a contribution to a fund at the Foundation from your IRA as an easy way to possibly reduce your tax burden and make a significant gift to support causes you care about.

Thank you for support of our Community Foundation Family, and as we come to the end of the year please reach out to us if we can assist you in your charitable giving. 


Heidi H. McPherson
Chief Executive Officer
Spotlights and Highlights
Women's Legacy Fund Luncheon Success
The Women's Legacy Fund

The Women's Legacy Fund (WLF) held the 17th annual luncheon on September 26th in which they awarded $60,000 in grants to six local nonprofits that directly impact women and girls. The highly successful luncheon brought together over 720 women and men who raised more than $75,000 to support the needs of women and girls. Grants from the WLF to local nonprofits provide funding for essential programs to empower women and girls across our communities.

This year's grantee recipients included Boys & Girls Club of Mid Central Coast, Boys & Girls Club of South San Luis Obispo CountyCommunity Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo County, Inc.French Hospital Medical Center FoundationPeoples' Self-Help Housing and Transitions-Mental Health Association. For more details about these grants please click here.

The mother daughter duo of Linda Reitner and Missy Reitner Cameron led the show dressed as Wonder Women. Keynote speaker Tuti Scott shared her knowledge about philanthropy as well as how to advocate for social change and equality. Local supporter Bob Wacker of Wacker Wealth Partners shared a touching story about his mother and the reason that he continues to donate to the fund.

Take a look at the photos from the luncheon on our Facebook pageTo make a donation to the Women's Legacy Fund click here. For more information contact Program Associate Erin McCall at

Thank you to everyone that supported this event!

The Community Foundation Voices
In the coming months we will be sharing "Voices" from our donors and community partners to provide a better understanding of the impact the Foundation has in our community. We hope you enjoy learning about our partners!
Charting A New Course of Collaboration

As she gazed out into the vast sea ahead, Dr. Anneka Scranton knew that to map a course that would lead to realizing her philanthropic goals would take research, planning and decisive action. While planning her move to a new area, she envisioned opportunities to impact the new community. This vision was brought to fruition and fueled by collaboration with The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County. As an avid sailing enthusiast, Dr. Scranton takes charting a new course to a distinct level, leading to mindful donations to support programs that feed her passion. 

Read more about Anneka's story HERE.
The Power of Grant Funding
Transforming Lives
The Gertrude and Leonard Fairbanks Foundation, through The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County, has granted Stand Strong $100,000 to support their youth counseling program for survivors of domestic violence and child abuse. Stand Strong, formerly the Women’s Shelter Program of San Luis Obispo County, works with children ages 3 through 18 who have experienced trauma in the form of physical, sexual, verbal, and emotional abuse, as well as children who have witnessed domestic violence, community violence and/or been victims of bullying.

A primary goal of therapy for these children includes creating a safe, supportive and non-judgmental environment where they can explore their trauma, better understand it, learn how to cope with it, and move forward to live healthy lives. Understanding that everyone deserves a violence-free future—and that such a future is possible—is a key step in this process.

“This incredible support from The Fairbanks Foundation will greatly enhance our ability to provide therapy services for children exposed to trauma” said Dr. Kirsten Rambo, Executive Director of Stand Strong. “We are beyond grateful to The Fairbanks Foundation and The Community Foundation for their confidence in us to do this critical work and for this meaningful contribution that will support our mission to end domestic violence in San Luis Obispo County.”
10th Annual Professional Advisors Luncheon
Each year, The Community Foundation convenes professional advisors – including attorneys, accountants, bankers, and financial advisors – from across San Luis Obispo County in recognition of our valued partnership with professional advisors in their service to charitable clients. Our Professional Advisors Luncheon  for more than 150 luncheon attendees will be held on Friday, October 25, 2019 in an effort to keep local professional advisors abreast of topics in the fields of philanthropy and community leadership. This year's keynote speaker is Christoph Courth, Senior Strategist for Family and Philanthropy Advisor at UBS. He will be sharing strategies and values used by successful philanthropists.

Our local speaker will be Andrew Galassi, one of our dynamic scholarship recipients who is working towards his BS in Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. He will be sharing the impact that The Community Foundation scholarship has had in his life - allowing him to participate in national engineering competitions, and pursue internships at Caltech and Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) as well as recently working on the Mars 2020 Project.

For more information about our work with Professional Advisors please contact Donor Services Coordinator Cecelia Mazelin at
Local Luncheon Celebrates Giving

National Philanthropy Joan Gellert-SargenDay™ is a special day set aside each year wherein we recognize and celebrate the great contributions of philanthropy, and those people active in the philanthropic community, to the enrichment of our world. Our local Association of Fundraising Professionals San Luis Obispo County Chapter (AFP SLO) will be hosting  a luncheon celebration at the Embassy Suites in San Luis Obispo on Thursday, November 14, 2019, from 11:30 am-1:30 pm. The Community Foundation is proud to be the premier sponsor of this wonderful event. Join us as the Philanthropist of the Year Award will be presented to Joan-Gellert Sargen, a long-time local philanthropist and good friend of The Community Foundation. For more information or to purchase tickets to the event follow this link

Use Your IRA For Charity

Contributing from your IRA to a fund at the Community Foundation (IRA Qualified Charitable Distribution - QCD) is an easy way to reduce your tax burden and make a significant gift to support causes you care about.

In retirement the IRS may require you to withdraw a certain amount (a required minimum distribution - RMD) from your IRA each year whether you need the funds or not, and you pay income tax on every distribution you take. You can utilize part of your RMD to direct a gift to benefit the causes of your choice.

How it Works

If you are 70 1/2 or older, you can make a gift from your IRA account directly to The Community Foundation for your charitable giving. Gifts made to the Foundation from your IRA (up to $100,000 per year) are not reportable as taxable income and qualify toward your required minimum distribution which can lower your income and taxes. If you are married, your spouse (age 70 1/2 or older) can also make a gift of up to $100,000 from his or her IRA, for a total of $200,000.

You can request an IRA Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) to almost any type of fund, including general endowment, field of interest, designated, agency, and scholarship funds, excluding your Donor Advised Fund.


With an IRA Charitable Rollover you reduce your taxes, support or establish a fund to benefit one or more organizations you care about, and feel good knowing that you were able to make a major gift from your IRA for charitable causes you care about. For more information about making a QCD, contact your tax adviser or contact our Donor Services Coordinator Cecelia Mazelin at 

Important Dates
October 25: Professional Advisors Luncheon
November 13: Mountain Air Ladies Night benefiting the Women's Legacy Fund
November 14: National Philanthropy Day Luncheon
November 14: "In Our Backyard" Donor Education Event
December 5: Scholarship Applications Open
You can make a difference!
The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County is a grantmaking and education foundation that provides support to charitable organizations throughout our county. For more than 20 years, the Foundation has provided almost $35 million in grants and scholarships and our charitable assets under management have grown to $60 million, and provide support to all aspects of our community in perpetuity. For further information or to donate to any fund, please call 805-543-2323.
Give Now
Copyright © 2019 The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County, All rights reserved.

The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County
550 Dana Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

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