WC endowment fund poised for continued growth through recent transition
For over 30 years, a group of Worthington Christian dads and WC alumni dads have been doing something extraordinary behind the scenes. Their service to the school has been largely silent but significant. It started with a shared vision: to establish an enduring, ongoing legacy of generosity and support for WC.
In the late 1980s, a group of Worthington Christian dads began to discuss ways that they could support the school in a way that would have a lasting impact. They shared a desire to create something that would ensure the school had funds available on a long-term basis. One of these dads, Tom Mason, suggested creating an endowment fund, an investment fund that allows for regular withdrawals from the interest it earns while the principal continues to grow. The group agreed that this was the best option to fulfill their vision, and WC’s Parent-Teacher Fellowship Endowment Fund was born.
Once these men decided on creating an endowment fund, they developed a 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt public charity, along with a board of trustees to oversee its management. They collected $1000 as the initial investment. Dr. Steve Weber served as the fund’s treasurer for many years. Beginning in 1986 and continuing through 2021, Dr. Weber and fellow WC dad Glenn Williams (pictured right of Troy McIntosh) met every Monday morning to take care of any business pertaining to the fund. Ray Ramsay, Jim Jerele, Cliff Raymond, and Craig Wright are some of the other men that played significant roles in developing this fund. Another WC alumni dad, Jim Edwards, has also been involved with the fund since its earliest years, and has served as the president of the board of trustees for many years.
Over time, the initial investment of $1000 in the PTF Endowment Fund began to grow. There were annual school fundraisers that gave a portion of their proceeds to the fund, events like a pastors’ luncheon to raise awareness of and engagement with the fund, and the faithful generosity of people deeply committed to WC that contributed to the fund’s growth. Today, this fund’s principal amount is over $750,000. Because it’s an endowment, not one penny of the money raised or donated to it has been taken out—only the interest earnings. And those interest earnings have been used to bless so many in the WC community.
Perhaps the PTF Endowment Fund’s most noticeable contribution to WC over the last many years has been through the Teacher of the Year Award. Each May, a peer-nominated faculty member receives this honor and is awarded a monetary gift. This is one way that the PTF Endowment Fund has been a blessing, but there are many more ways that may go unnoticed. Other awards include the Trustee Special Recognition Teacher Award and the Trustee Special Recognition Service Award, both of which recognize faculty and staff who exhibit exemplary service to WC and its students. They also award “34 Impact” awards, recognizing outstanding teacher contributions that make a difference in the lives of students. Dr. Joe Price, a recent recipient of this particular award, says, “The ’34’ Impact award is one way in which WC shows that it values teachers and the work we do – one of the many reasons why WC is a great place to work. I was truly honored to have received this award.”
The PTF Endowment Fund also supports students and families of WC through various scholarships. Many of these scholarships were established in honor of someone, and each has its own guidelines and criteria for recipients. Last year alone, the fund awarded 10 scholarships to deserving students nominated by WC faculty. To date, the fund has given over $350,000 to WC faculty, staff, and students in the form of cash awards and scholarship credits. All from an initial investment of $1000 and a shared vision for an enduring legacy.
This year is a milestone year for the PTF Endowment Fund. In an effort to continue practicing good stewardship of the fund and in hopes of making it even more successful in the future, the board of trustees has decided to transition it to an Organization Endowment Fund within the Columbus Foundation. It will now be called the Worthington Christian School Fund for Academic Excellence. It will be a “family of funds” and all existing scholarships and awards will continue and hopefully grow. It will be guided by an advisory board made up of the present Endowment Fund trustees as well as new members.
The long-time president of the board of trustees Jim Edwards (pictured left of Troy McIntosh) explains that “it has been a great joy” to serve in this capacity for so many years. He originally became involved when his son Michael was a student at WC. He was struck by the outstanding quality of WC teachers. Speaking for parents, he explains, “Our children are our lives.” For his family, providing an education based on the LORD was fundamentally important. He wanted to be a part of continuing the excellence of WC, and leading the PTF Endowment Fund for so many years felt like the best way to do that. After nearly three decades of silent, selfless dedication to this endeavor, he is hopeful that this transition will ensure the continued success and growth of the fund for many more years to come. All to ultimately fulfill and further the vision of blessing the WC community through an enduring legacy of generosity.