Licking County Foundation’s donors come from every walk of life…every generation…and their interests are as varied as the people they wish to serve. Yet each of our donors has something in common—an unmistakable desire to improve their community. We are truly grateful to the individuals, families and organizations that have recently established these charitable funds:
Lucy E. Cotterman Memorial Fund: A designated agency fund established by Richard N. Cotterman to provide permanent, continuous support to the Licking County Humane Society in memory of his beloved wife who died in 2017. Animal welfare was a cause that was near and dear to Lucy Cotterman’s heart. Lucy was born in Newark and was a 1959 graduate of Hebron High School. She was an animal lover and had a lifelong passion for horses. In fact, she loved horses so much that she called it her “horse disease”. Lucy’s first horses were plow horses, which she raised on her family farm on Mill Dam. She enjoyed showing horses at the Ohio State Fair and the Kentucky Horse Park. In 1991, she won fifth in the nation on the America Paint Horse Association Amateur Honor Roll. She also loved educating the youth in our community about horses. Lucy’s great love was her husband, Richard Cotterman. The Cottermans were married on December 14, 1957, and spent nearly 60 wonderful years together. Lucy retired after 34 years of service from Lakewood Local Schools, where she worked in the school cafeteria and as a bus driver. Lucy also enjoyed dogs, cats, cows, history, civil war history, camping, big band music, detective shows, and the game show, The Price is Right. Lucy touched many lives within the community. Her passion and care for animals will live on through this fund.
Gracie D. Dudgeon Memorial Scholarship Fund: A scholarship fund established by Michael and Jennifer Dudgeon in memory of their daughter, Gracie Danielle Dudgeon, who gained her wings on February 7, 2018. Gracie was a 5th grader at Stevenson Elementary School and participated in Heath Sertoma cheerleading. She had a love for animals, especially horses. She had a heart that loved always and often, family and friends most deeply. Remembering her kindness, care for others and gratitude, Gracie’s classmates are now reflecting upon how they can “LLG”—“Live Like Gracie.” In Gracie’s honor, this scholarship assists Heath High School graduating seniors who participated in Bulldog or Heath Sertoma cheerleading to further their studies at an accredited college, university, trade or technical school.
Don Edwards Park Improvement Fund: A project fund established to improve the baseball fields at Don Edwards Park which is owned by the City of Newark and operated by the Licking County Family YMCA. Built in 1963, Don Edwards Park is a four-field baseball complex located in Newark, Ohio. It hosts baseball games for ages thirteen years-old and up. It’s also the home of the Licking County Settlers, a college wooden bat team in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League.
Food Pantry Network of Licking County Endowment Fund: An endowed agency fund established by the Board of Directors of the Food Pantry Network of Licking County to further the organization’s mission of assuring that no one in Licking County goes hungry now or 100 years from now. The Network strives daily to acquire, store, and distribute nutritious food to the financially deprived and otherwise needy in the community through the operation of food pantries, soup kitchens, emergency shelters, youth camps and after-school programs. The Food Pantry Network of Licking County is a cooperative that was established in 1981 to coordinate the acquisition and distribution of emergency food supplies by working through its member food agencies. The largest support comes from the local community in the form of cash contributions and food drives. The Network receives 91% of its funding from the Licking County Community and 9% from program reimbursements. The Food Pantry Network is a partner distribution organization associated with Mid-Ohio Food Bank in Columbus. There are 46 member pantries and social service agencies who distribute food or provide on-site feeding programs for the needy. The vast majority who work to distribute food are volunteers—over 400 strong to help the Network fight the war against hunger.
Nathaniel James Gard Memorial Scholarship Fund: This scholarship was established by John S. and Elaine Kopke Gard in memory of their grandson, Nathaniel James Gard, an active little boy who positively touched the lives of all he met. Nathaniel was known for his contagious smile and love of dunking basketballs. In honor of his life, this scholarship assists individuals who were adopted or were ever in foster care to further their studies through an accredited college or university or through a technical training or other certificate program.
Gazebo Restoration Fund: A project fund established to restore and rebuild the gazebo from downtown Newark on the lawn of the former Children’s Home which will be transformed into a community park named Children’s Home Park. The gazebo will be upgraded and enhanced by: being ADA compliant and brought up to current code, total electric service, structural repair, concrete foundation and sidewalks, painting, and a new roof. In addition to the gazebo, the new park will feature mature trees, green space, picnic tables, foundation stone, and items from the original Children’s Home.
Licking County Coalition of Care Endowment Fund in Recognition of Carol Bradley: An endowed agency fund established by the organization’s Board of Directors to provide a dedicated source of income to further its mission to put love into action by responding to the unmet spiritual and physical needs of people in crisis, today and forever. This fund is named in honor of Carol Bradley, a founding and now emeritus board member, who has worked tirelessly for more than a decade to improve the lives of those living in poverty in our community. The Licking County Coalition of Care is an ecumenical partnership of local churches with a vision that the community would be a much better place if everyone enjoyed stable living conditions, a sense of worth, and appreciation of God’s loving care. They are dedicated to breaking the cycle of poverty in Licking County that binds individuals to a recurring sequence of crises. Their goal is to have a positive impact on the well-being of individuals who have few resources or options by reflecting God’s love for them, connecting them to programs and services in the community, and offering financial assistance when other resources are not available.
Licking County Coalition of Care Reserve Fund: An agency fund established by the organization’s Board of Directors to provide flexible, unrestricted support and build funds for a project or future operational needs, and conduct activities that promote relief of the poor or those in need of emergency assistance in Licking County.
Licking County Library Fund: An agency fund established through a gift from Southgate Corporation in honor of long time employee Marty Morrison to provide continuous, permanent support to the Licking County Library. Martha J. Morrison, better known as Marty, served the Licking County Library board for nearly 20 years. Marty’s love of books and reading was instilled at an early age when her mother volunteered on Saturday afternoons at the Hebron Library. Marty served as the chair of the Finance Committee and was meticulous not only with details of the financials but also the board minutes. She was pleased to be on the board during the construction of the new Main Library located at 101 West Main Street in downtown Newark and for the Emerson R. Miller renovation in 2011.
Licking County Library Frances M. Banton Fund: An endowed agency fund established through a gift from the Licking County Library’s Board of Trustees “to be used in the operation of a children’s room or children’s reading area in the main library or in any branch thereof as the Trustees thereof shall determine,” as set forth by the Last Will and Testament of Frances M. Banton on December 4, 1986.
Licking County Library Jessie C. Thomas Fund: An endowed agency fund established through a gift from the Licking County Library’s Board of Trustees “to be used each year for the purchase of books for the Children’s Room,” as set forth by the Last Will and Testament of Jessie C. Thomas which was probated on January 15, 1943.
Mauger Charitable Trust Strategic Projects Fund: A donor advised fund established by the Advisory Board of the Cecil L. Mauger Charitable Trust for the purpose of supporting worthy charitable organizations and worthy causes which serve the residents of Licking County. The Cecil L. Mauger Charitable Trust was established under the will of Cecil L. Mauger in 1972. Mr. Mauger, a Newark businessman and owner of Mauger’s Fish and Oyster Market, cared about enriching the quality of life of citizens in the Licking County, Ohio area for generations to come.
Bill E. Mitchell Memorial Fund: An unrestricted fund established through a gift of the net assets of the Bill E. Mitchell Foundation to allow flexibility in addressing the community’s most urgent needs and emerging opportunities in perpetuity. A native and lifelong resident of Newark, Mr. Mitchell passed away on April 27, 2018 at the age of 83. He was passionate about his community, business, friends, and most importantly, family; and was known for his relentless pursuit to make his hometown better. He was an innovator and developer, creating the “mushroom” apartment and founding A1 Developers and Mitchell Systems. He also established the Bill E. Mitchell Foundation to operate exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, literary, or educational purposes, or to foster national or international amateur sports competition. A philanthropist and involved with many local charities and organizations, Mr. Mitchell contributed time and treasure to many projects throughout Newark, including the Newark Rotary Pavilion, the Newark Rotary Auction, the Newark Rotary Accessible Playground, the Bill E. Mitchell Retirement Center, A Call To College, Licking Memorial Hospital, St. John Lutheran Church, Licking County 4-H Band, the Newark Fraternal Order of Police, Newark Elks, St. Vincent Haven, and the Salvation Army. He enjoyed spending time with his family—especially during the holidays and watching Ohio State football games! Mr. Mitchell also enjoyed golf matches, card games, and conversations with his many friends.
O’Neill Foster Youth Fund: A donor advised fund established by Nancy Eaton O’Neill for the purpose of pursuing her philanthropic goals and benefiting the charitable causes and organizations she cares about most. She plans to provide support to older children in Licking County foster care and those youth transitioning to independent living.
Steven T. O’Neill Scholarship Fund Partnering Education and Employment: A scholarship fund established by Steven T. O’Neill. Steve enjoyed a 40-year career with State Farm. Partnering education and employment, the scholarship assists Licking County residents who are advancing their education by pursuing undergraduate degrees or career and skilled trades training. A Licking County native, Steve’s parents, John W. “Jack” O’Neill and Gretchen O’Neill, were the inspiration to create this scholarship. Mr. O’Neill taught electricity and electronics at the Licking County Joint Vocational School and Mrs. O’Neill served as principal of St. Francis de Sales School and Blessed Sacrament School.
JoAnn J. Phillips Memorial Fund: An unrestricted fund established through a bequest from JoAnn Phillips to address the current and future needs of our community now and forever. A Newark native and a graduate of Newark High School (Class of 1945), Mrs. Phillips passed away on June 3, 2018 at the age of 90. She was preceded in death by her husband of 35 years, William Walker Phillips and her daughter, Teri Lee Phillips-Marrs. She retired from Kaiser Aluminum where she worked for 40 years. She was also an avid bridge player, former bowler, and a long-time member of the Second Presbyterian Church in Newark.
Robert “Bob” Pricer Award Fund: A scholarship established in 2018 by Fostering Further, a 100% volunteer, nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting children in foster care, families, and caseworkers in Central Ohio. In honor of the life of Robert “Bob” Pricer, the scholarship assists students who: have spent time in foster care for at least two total years of high school or at graduation; are accessing independent living services through Licking County Job & Family Services; and want to further their education through an accredited college or university or through a technical training or other certificate program. Mr. Robert "Bob" Pricer was a man who cared deeply about the people of this community. He served our country in the 280th Combat Engineers Battalion during WWII and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. After returning from the war, he joined local radio station WCLT in 1947 as a founding member. Mr. Pricer's commitment to Licking County was integral to many of the community resources we enjoy today: development of Camp O'Bannon, the Christmas Courthouse Lighting, Community Chest (which is now United Way), the Newark-Heath Rotary, the Robert Pricer Foster Children's Fund, and several key educational and infrastructure developments. The Robert "Bob" Pricer Award is given to a young person who exemplifies the attributes that Bob Pricer modeled for the citizens of Licking County: bravery, dedication, perseverance, and self-discipline.
Thelma E. and Francis J. Rauch Scholarship Fund: A scholarship fund established through the estate of Robert F. Rauch in memory of his parents, Thelma E. and Francis J. Rauch. This renewable scholarship assists graduating seniors from Utica High School who will be attending a liberal arts college in the United States. Recipients must demonstrate financial need. Robert “Bob” Rauch graduated from Utica High School in 1956. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rollins College in Winter Park, FL in 1960 and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Illinois in 1971. He taught school at various levels for several years in Ohio and Illinois; and later, became an editor for Encyclopedia Britannica. He retired as Editing Director of Yearbook for Britannica in 1993. After retirement, he continued freelance writing and editing for several years. Bob enjoyed collecting and reading books, listening to classical music (especially piano and organ), and working on his family’s genealogy. He was a volunteer at the Licking County Genealogical Society at the Newark Library and substitute pianist at the Chatham United Methodist Church. He was a member of The Society of Civil War Families of Licking County and of The First Families of Licking County, Ohio.
Southwest Licking Schools Educational Foundation Fund: An agency fund established by the organization’s Board of Directors to provide ongoing support to the Southwest Licking Local School District for the purpose of promoting, encouraging and supporting excellence and innovation through the development and improvement of curricular and co-curricular enhancements. This growing school district began operations in 1953 and now includes: preschool at the Early Learning Center; grades K-1 at Kirkersville Elementary School; grades 2-3 at Pataskala Elementary School; grades 4-5 at Etna Elementary School; grades 6-8 at Watkins Middle School; and grades 9-12 at Watkins Memorial High School.
John and Christine Warner Fund for the Boys & Girls Club of Newark: A designated agency fund established to provide permanent, continuous support for the general operations of the Boys & Girls Club of Newark (BGCN). The BGCN will serve the community’s youth in a standalone facility with access to programming and opportunities focused on academic success, healthy lifestyles, good character and citizenship. Located in the former Maholm Elementary School, the Boys & Girls Club of Newark will support countless Newark youth in a safe space—after school and during the summer—where they can form relationships with peers and invaluable role models.