Meet The Team
The Waukesha County Community Foundation is a pool of permanent endowment and project funds created primarily by and for the people of Waukesha County to provide grant support to charitable organizations. The intent of the Foundation is to serve a broad spectrum of community needs.
The Waukesha County Community Foundation was formed in November 1999 to create a permanent pool of funds to support nonprofit organizations throughout Waukesha County that served a broad spectrum of community needs. The intent of the Foundation was to continually strengthen the community and improve the quality of life for people in Waukesha County. The founding Board members were Bryce Styza, Peter Lettenberger, Donald Fundingsland, Beverly Chappie and LaVern Herman. Their initial tasks were to increase the number of Directors to achieve a broad representation from throughout Waukesha County, and to build the assets of the Foundation.
In 2000, the Foundation reached $1.3 million in cash and commitments, moving closer to providing support for charitable organizations within Waukesha County. Later in 2000, the WCCF awarded its first grants a year earlier than projected. The creation of the Bryce and Anne Styza Fund and the Kathryn Herman Fund resulted in $15,500 in grants for five local nonprofit organizations. With assets at $1.5 million, the Foundation began taking applications for its unrestricted funds in May and awarded grants in 2001, as planned.
In 2001, annual receipts exceed the $1-million mark for the first time, with gifts of $1,011,336. The WCCF announced that total gifts and pledges reached $1.8 million, and $30,000 in competitive grants were contributed to local nonprofits. The Foundation hires Valerie Brown as its first staff member.
In 2004, the Foundation’s assets grew to $7 million with more than 40 funds established, including nonprofit agency endowment funds. The Foundation announced the launch of the Artesian Funds, a charitable giving program appealing to novice philanthropists, requiring an initial donation of $1,000. The Foundation named the Artesian Funds after springs that feed lakes and rivers in Waukesha County, likening the springs to the charitable funds that will grow and eventually provide grants to nonprofits. The WCCF announced the hiring of Dave Schultz as the Foundation’s first full-time director. The Women and Girls Fund of Waukesha County was established with endowment funds from the closed Waukesha YWCA. The WCCF became the 19th certified foundation in Wisconsin by following the standards of performance set by the Donors Forum of Wisconsin and Council on Foundations.
In 2005, the WCCF received a $2 million donation from Wauwatosa Savings Bank, making it one of the largest charitable contributions ever received by a Waukesha County organization and boosting its assets to more than $7 million. Later in the year, the WCCF announced a $5.5 million stock donation by Wauwatosa Savings Bank to more than triple its assets to $13 million.
In 2006, the first Celebration of Giving Award recipients were Bob and Pat Kern of Waukesha, while assets from the Foundation reached $18.5 million. Grants exceed $800,000, and cumulative grants surpassed $2 million.
The year 2007 was a milestone for the WCCF as it granted more than $1 million to area organizations, a record for the organization.
In 2009, the WCCF distributed a record $2.3 million to area charitable organizations.
In 2010, the WCCF earned a ranking of No. 52 on the prestigious Community Foundation Top 100 List. The ranking is based upon the percentage of grants made compared with total assets. The WCCF announces the retirement of Director Dave Schultz. During his six years Schultz led the Foundation, it grew in assets from $5 million to $22 million despite a severe recession. The number of permanent funds increased from 49 to 160, awarded grants totaled almost $7 million and attracted contributions of about $20 million. Less than a year later, Kathryn Leverenz is named as the nonprofit’s new president.
In 2011, more than $106,711 in grants are distributed to 16 area charitable organizations.
In 2014, the Waukesha County Community Foundation reaches new heights with a record number of grants totaling more than $2.1 million distributed to nonprofit organizations and programs to provide opportunities and foster growth in Waukesha County.
Today, the Waukesha County Community Foundation remains driven in its mission to nurture philanthropy, educate existing and potential donors about the needs of Waukesha County residents and build community partnerships. The nonprofit organization has 283 funds and more than $38 million in assets. Since its founding, the nonprofit organization has awarded nearly $25 million in grants to charitable organizations.
Arenz, Molter, Macy and Riffle
BMO Harris Bank
Frank and Victoria Boucher
Anthony and Andrea Bryant
Century Fence Company
Donald and Beverly Chappie
Citizens Bank of Mukwonago
Couri Insurance Agency, Inc.
Thomas E. and Maripat Dalum
Emergency Medical Associates of Waukesha
Donald W. Fundingsland
Kathleen Gray and Ronald Hofer
Harmony Homes, Inc.
LaVern and Kathryn Herman
Steven L. and Cathy Johnson
Mark and Karin Kultgen
Laura and Daniel Gruber Fund
John P. Macy
Marshall & Ilsley Foundation
Rhody and Carolyn Megal
Michael Best & Friedrich, LLP
Mihi Cura Futuri Fund
MSI General, Inc.
ProHealth Care, Inc.
Richard* and Carol Richards
Kenneth and Jeannie Riesch
James P. and Ann Riley
Roundy’s Supermarkets, Inc.
Claudine Bertieri Savage, In Memoriam
Select Advisor Group, Inc.
Bryce and Anne Styza
Teerlink Family Foundation
Rexford W. and Bobbe Titus III
Vrakas/Blum & Co., SC
Waukesha Engine, Dresser Inc.
Waukesha State Bank
Jeff and Sara Ford Wiesner
Wimmer Brothers Realty, Inc.
What is a Community Foundation?
We are a collection of charitable funds established by individuals, families, businesses and organizations to help meet local challenges and improve the quality of life in Waukesha County.
We receive charitable gifts, work with families, individuals, attorneys, and estate and financial planners to devise plans that fit every economic situation, ensuring that donors’ charitable contributions are used to the fullest extent and for maximum benefit.
We place gifts into funds, manage the assets of those funds for growth and make grants from those funds.
We offer several types of funds to help donors meet their charitable goals while also meeting community needs.
We make grants to agencies and special projects in Waukesha County, we identify needs, stimulate resources to address those needs and help strengthen Waukesha County for the future.
Our volunteer Board of Directors and staff are dedicated to understanding donor needs, representing their charitable interests, expertly handling complex gifts, wisely managing charitable funds and leveraging a plethora of community knowledge to improve the charitable impact.
We serve as a hub for a collaboration between philanthropists, nonprofits and other funding organizations across Waukesha County.
We connect ideas, initiatives and dreams.