Creston-Kootenay Foundation celebrates significant growth at AGM

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Two changes of personnel were recorded on the board of directors of the Creston-Kootenay Foundation (CKF) as the organization celebrated a year of significant growth at its annual general meeting on Oct. 24.

Sherri Fowler joined the board, replacing Bob Ewashen, who retired. Fowler was elected to a one-year term, as was Larry Brierley, who has chaired the board since the CKF’s founding. Creston town councillor Joanna Wilson continues to represent the local government entities in the area served by the CKF for another year. Elected to three-year terms after serving one year were Heather Suttie and Ted Hutchinson. One vacancy on the 10-member board remains to be filled.

On the fiscal front, the financial statement presented by the CKF’s auditors, Gadike-Minichiello-Carr, showed net assets at the year ending May 31, 2012, of $846,533, up from $624,855 a year earlier.

As Brierley noted in presenting a brief history of the organization, the Creston-Kootenay Foundation is a community foundation with membership in the Community Foundations of Canada. It accepts donations in the form of cash, stocks and bonds, real estate, bequests and art.

These assets are invested in perpetuity and some of the interest they generate is distributed annually through grants to non-profit groups providing community services in the Yahk-to-Riondel area. Its registration with the Canada Revenue Agency allows the foundation to issue income tax-deduction receipts to its donors.

In his annual report, Brierley noted that the CKF had made grants totalling $35,000 in 2011. Major recipients were the Creston and District Society for Community Living’s Therapeutic Riding Program and, in partnership with the Tuck Shop at the Creston Valley Hospital, the Interior Health Authority and the East Kootenay Foundation for Health, for the purchase of a new colonoscope for the local hospital.

Brierley also recalled that a very successful soiree was staged in June, in co-operation with the greenhouse group at the local branch of the College of the Rockies and he thanked CKF director Nicole Nilsson, who was primarily responsible for organizing the event and the Creston Community Band and the Prince Charles Secondary School AVID students for their volunteer help.

Another target of the chair’s gratitude was Alex Nilsson, whose 24-hour golf marathon on the longest day of the year was highly successful in attracting donations.

Finally, Brierley noted that the CKF has the lowest administration costs among community foundations in the Columbia Basin, with all its board members volunteering their time.

At a board meeting following the AGM, Brierley was re-elected as the foundation’s chair. Hutchinson, who continues to head the investment committee, was chosen as vice-chair, while Vern Ronmark and Suttie were returned as treasurer and secretary, respectively.