News & Event
In 1998, the Community Foundation announced the creation of The Charles Thomas and Mary Ellen Main Scholarship Fund. The fund was made possible through bequests from Mr. and Mrs. Main; their wills instructed us to provide financial assistance for educational purposes to deserving children and young adults with financial need.
Since 1998, the fund has provided more than $117,000 in scholarship support to nearly 100 Frederick County residents. Part of this money supported Frederick County Public Schools’ (FCPS) Character Counts! program, from approximately 2002 to 2007. This program encouraged FCPS students “to become caring, respectful and responsible citizens and family members” by teaching trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship. Each high school in Frederick County chose one graduating senior to receive a $500 scholarship to reward their exemplary character.
Supporting scholarships and the Character Counts! program is a fitting legacy for the Mains. They were both lifelong and well-respected residents of Frederick County. Charles was a farm manager, and Mary Ellen a homemaker. Mary Ellen served her community in numerous volunteer capacities, including the Red Cross as a nurse’s aide at Frederick Memorial Hospital during World War II, and various homemaker clubs. They did not have children but wanted to provide opportunities for students to obtain an education, and according to Joseph D. Baker, a close friend, “were excited to learn they could provide a scholarship through their wills with the Community Foundation.” Mr. Baker continued, saying, “They were very excited and glad to do so.” All who knew them would agree they both exemplified all the components of the Character Counts! program.
This is a wonderful example of giving back to the community and helping people succeed. The Mains passed away in the early 1990s but created a legacy that continues 21 years later. As you read this, two students are benefiting from scholarships for their 2019-2020 academic year at Pennsylvania College of Technology and Frederick Community College.
How would you like to impact your community? The Community Foundation can suggest many ways to create your legacy. You don’t have to be wealthy; you just need the desire to help. Learn more by visiting www.FrederickCountyGives.org or call our office at 301.695.7660.
Sometimes legacies are a surprise. The notice from The Office of the Register of Wills stating that the Community Foundation was named as an interested party in the estate of Calvin Murray was routine. As the story unfolded, we learned that Mr. Murray wished to establish a charitable fund supporting two nonprofits: The Howard Chapel Ridgeville United Methodist Church (UMC), and Frederick Memorial Hospital. The surprise? Mr. Murray wasn’t known to us, nor had he let us know in advance that he wished to create funds benefitting his church and the hospital. Even more surprising was the estimated size of the estate – more than $20 million.
We’re always sorry to hear of someone’s death, of course, and establishing a charitable fund with proceeds from the estate is not unusual. A well -respected resident of Mount Airy, Maryland, Mr. Murray was described as a quiet individual who was always in touch with local news. He lived and worked on the family farm his entire life. As a youth, he received numerous awards from 4-H for raising and showing farm animals. His prize cattle awards provided the opportunity to serve as a Maryland delegate to the National 4-H Conference in 1946. He also received top honors for his animal projects from Future Farmers of America. After graduating from high school, he continued working on his family’s farm, and other land acquired nearby.
Mr. Murray and his parents were life-long members of The Howard Chapel Ridgeville UMC, and he participated in the youth group and served the church in his younger years through various volunteer roles. Mr. Murray’s extended family said the bequest to the church was a direct reflection of his parent’s dedication to the church and their very active involvement.
He was kind and cared about others, even those he didn’t know. Mr. Murray decided to name Frederick Memorial Hospital as a grant recipient because he received excellent care when admitted with a health issue. He knew that others in the community might need hospital care but may not be able to afford it, and he wanted to use his resources to help.
Mr. Murray passed away in January 2012. The Calvin Murray Charitable Fund was established, and in August 2014, the first grants were presented to The Howard Chapel Ridgeville UMC and Frederick Memorial Hospital. The church used its initial grant towards an addition to the building and updating other parts of the building to be compliant with the American with Disabilities Act. Representatives from the church anticipated future grants to provide support of mission projects in the Mount Airy, Maryland area, as well as other places in the United States and the world.
Frederick Memorial Hospital used its first grant towards The James M. Stockman Cancer Institute, which was under construction at the time. This state of the art facility that opened in the summer of 2017, now provides diagnosis, treatment, cancer patient follow-up, and support services under one roof. The annual grant now supports other programs and projects at the hospital.
Calvin Murray left a legacy that will positively impact countless people in perpetuity as annually, each entity will receive a grant that will support their programs. Fortunately, he had specified his wishes via his attorney in advance, and we were able to create his fund to carry out his charitable wishes exactly as he wanted. But because we didn’t know of his charitable intentions in advance of his death, we weren’t able to say thank you, and that’s sad.
We realize that Mr. Murray’s estate, in its size, is the exception rather than the rule. It’s important to know that no matter the size of your estate, every gift creates impact in the community. If you decide you would like to create a charitable fund with the Community Foundation that becomes active after your passing, we encourage you to talk with your professional advisors and us in advance, rather than to make it a surprise. That way, we understand what you wish to do and the legacy you’d like to leave. And, we can thank you personally for your vision and plans to help Frederick County be its best.
The online applications can be found at www.FrederickCountyGives.org/WertheimerAwards beginning on May 1, 2018. Nominations must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on May 31, 2018. No paper applications will be accepted.
The Wertheimer Fellows for Excellence in Volunteerism Awards is now in its 16th year and honors the legacy of the late Janis Miller Wertheimer, a well-known Frederick businesswoman and prolific volunteer. The awards program is made possible through The Janis Miller Wertheimer Endowment Fund. Those nominated must be age 18 or older. Nominations are not accepted for couples, groups, clubs, or organizations.
The Wertheimer Youth in Action Award is now in its seventh year. Youth under the age of 18 who are positively impacting the community by volunteering their talents and energies in extraordinary ways are eligible to be nominated.
The honorees will be recognized at the Community Foundation’s Annual Report to the Community in November 2018. Wertheimer Fellows are awarded $25,000 to establish or add to a permanent fund with the Community Foundation for the nonprofit or charitable endeavor of their choice. The Wertheimer Youth in Action honoree will receive a $2,000 grant to support a Frederick County nonprofit organization of their choice.
FREDERICK, MD – April 16, 2019: The Community Foundation of Frederick County will be accepting nominations for the 2019 Wertheimer Fellow for Excellence in Volunteerism and Youth in Action Awards from May 1 through May 31, 2019.
The online applications can be found at www.FrederickCountyGives.org/WertheimerAwards beginning on May 1, 2019. Nominations must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on May 31, 2019. No paper applications will be accepted.
The Wertheimer Fellows for Excellence in Volunteerism Awards is now in its 17th year and honors the legacy of the late Janis Miller Wertheimer, a well-known Frederick businesswoman and prolific volunteer. The awards program is made possible through The Janis Miller Wertheimer Endowment Fund. Those nominated must be age 18 or older. Nominations are not accepted for couples, groups, clubs, or organizations.
The Wertheimer Youth in Action Award is now in its eighth year. Youth under the age of 18 who are positively impacting the community by volunteering their talents and energies in extraordinary ways are eligible to be nominated.
The honorees will be recognized at the Community Foundation’s Annual Report to the Community in November 2019. Wertheimer Fellows are awarded $25,000 to establish or add to a permanent fund with the Community Foundation for the nonprofit or charitable endeavor of their choice. The Wertheimer Youth in Action honoree will receive a $2,000 grant to support a Frederick County nonprofit organization of their choice.
The Community Foundation of Frederick County was established in 1986 to advance local philanthropy and charitable giving.
FREDERICK, MD – October 8, 2019: The Frederick County Agri-Business Association (FCAB), in a final act before its official closing, contributed $5,000 to The Maryland Master Farmers Scholarship Fund, one of more than 720 component funds of The Community Foundation of Frederick County.
FCAB, established in 1993, was a Frederick-based group of businesses that supported scholarships for local students furthering their education in agriculture-related fields which provided more than $145,000 in scholarships to 150 students. In deciding to disband, FCAB looked for an appropriate source to move their remaining scholarship money so their mission of agriculture education could continue and chose The Community Foundation’s Maryland Master Farmers Scholarship Fund.
Created in 2007 by master farmers De Willard, Rodman Myers, Frank and Bess Gladhill, and Mehrle Ramsburg, The Maryland Master Farmers Scholarship Fund supports Frederick County students continuing their education in the fields of agriculture and/or horticulture. To date, more than 36 students have received nearly $55,000 in scholarships.
FREDERICK, MD – October 9, 2019: With foresight and vision, John C. Summers’ planned gift has created two funds that will help many people in the years to come. The John C. Summers Fund and The Myersville Lions Club Scholarship Fund become two of more than 720 component funds managed by The Community Foundation of Frederick County.
The John C. Summers Fund will assist people residing in Myersville, Maryland who have financial need regarding their utility bills or property taxes. Grants will be provided to nonprofits with programs for screening and qualifying applicants.
The Myersville Lions Club Scholarship Fund will provide post-secondary scholarships to students who are residents of Frederick County, Maryland, and Washington County, Maryland, studying in medical or health care related fields.
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