Mary and Fred Murray
Can you imagine having the opportunity to manage and to bestow money left by one of our country’s Founding Fathers? In 1790, Ben Franklin, printer, scientist, philosopher, community servant, and statesman, created a legacy that today reaches right into our own community! The Ben Franklin Fund represents one of the finest examples of what philanthropy is all about. The Fund shows how money set aside from a donor can impact the future. In Ben Franklin’s case it took two hundred years to bear the financial fruit he envisioned. In his will, Franklin bequeathed 1,000 pounds sterling, roughly equal to $4,000, to the Commonwealth of Pa.. Franklin knew his bequest would grow over time, so he stipulated that this amount be invested for 200 years and at the end of that time it had grown to over $2 million dollars.
In 1990, then Pennsylvania Governor, Robert P. Casey, signed a bill dividing the money between the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia and the State’s various community foundations. Indeed, the Wayne County Community Foundation was in the right place at the right time sharing in the distribution of the fund.
The Foundation has thereby established the Ben Franklin Community Service Award with its accompanying $1000 given to the recipient who then presents it to the local service organization of his or her choice. The 2008 winner was Attorney Warren Schloesser and he awarded his grant to the Wayne County Community Foundation’s “Educational Excellence Endowment”.
Past Recipients of the Ben Franklin Community Service Award:
- Edwin J. Thomas 1996
- Robert and Inger Stovall 1997
- Walter and Marilyn Barbe 1998
- Chuck and Wanda Jurgensen 1999
- Kent Brown 2000
- Sally Talaga 2001
- William and Paula Roos 2002
- Robert Knash 2003
- Peter and Molly Rodgers 2004
- James and Shirley Chapman 2005
- Joe Murray 2006
- Russell and Evelyn Ridd 2007
- Warren Schloesser 2008
- Bill Bursis 2009
- Harold Shook 2010
- Patricia and Leroy Spoor 2011
- Charles and Dorothy Grimm 2012
- Kuni Holbert, Elizabeth Baerenklua, Kathryn Highhouse 2013
- Virginia Motsko 2014
- Gary C. Beilman 2015
- Ann O'Hara, Jane Varcoe 2016
- Arthur and Gail Frey 2017
- Donna Decker 2018
- Paul and Sandy Meagher 2019
- Fred and Mary Murray 2020
To donate to suppor the Ben Franklin Service Award, please click here.