Houston Education Foundation Holds Meeting; Names New Board Members

The Houston Education Foundation met Tuesday, Aug. 19, at the Houston Schools’ superintendent office. Carol Silvey, representing Community Foundation of the Ozarks, spoke to the group about an opportunity for matching funds through the Harry Cooper Campaign for the Ozarks, with the stipulation that HEF initiate an endowment that would solely provide grants for local students and school.

HEF would be partnered with the Houston Community Foundation for these funds, to a total of $25,000, as one of 40 regional affiliates Harry Cooper has agreed to match dollar-for-dollar funds toward in the Ozarks. This is designed to strengthen the community-based philanthropy efforts with the deadline for matching fund contributions being Dec. 31, 2008.

Two new board members, Allan Branstetter and Brian Durham, were approved to replace Jean Millman and Mike Lybyer, whose terms expired, and the existing executive committee members agreed and were voted to retain their positions for one more year: Dr. Joe Richardson, chairman; Butch Burch, vice chairman; Rita Ruckert, treasurer; and Anne-Marie Mueller, secretary.

Peggy Holder reported payroll deduction presentations to Houston Schools were positive involving aides, teachers, administration and board members. Totals to date are: $448 in one-time donations and 27 payroll deductions. HEF feels this internal support will help immensely in growing the foundation.

The motion was made and approved to follow through with dollar-to-dollar matching funds for an endowment providing youth grants available through CFO and Harry Cooper.

Burch presented the details on the “Half Court Shoot” fund-raiser that is under consideration. At high school home boys’ and girls’ basketball games, there will be two tickets drawn for a chance to win $10 from the free-throw line, $25 from the 3-point line or $100 from half court. At the final boys’ basketball game of the year, two tickets will be drawn from the entire season’s collection for the chance to win $10,000 by shooting from half court. If the first person makes the shot the second does not shoot. Several restrictions apply as stipulated by the insurer. The first game is early December, and tickets will be sold at all home games. A discussion of possible sponsors took place.

It was recognized that the High School Gym Fund (speaker installation fund) would be a good focus for the Half Court Shoot fund-raiser. The new speakers will benefit the people who attend events in the gym and would replace a system that is sorely outdated.

Members attending were: Rita Ruckert, Peggy Holder, Butch Burch, Rick Ichord, Dan Adey, Anne-Marie Mueller, Dr. Joe Richardson, Brian Durham, Allan Branstetter. Advisory staff present were Dr. Dan Vandiver, Ben Yocom, Scott Roberts and Scott Dill, with special guest Carol Silvey.

The next meeting of HEF will be at 6 p.m. Sept. 16 in the Houston Schools’ superintendent office.

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