What's New

from the desk of Sara Ward



Spending time with friends and neighbors of the Community Foundation (C3F) is a highlight of my role as President. Recent weeks have given me plenty to enjoy.

I met a woman who is deeply connected to Charlevoix and is at a time in her life when she’s reflecting on what matters most. I’m grateful that the Community Foundation can be a partner for her, helping her follow generous instincts to plan for lasting impact in her will.

I spent time in East Jordan supporting the giving of a warm and genuine couple I've gotten to know very well. Their true sense of commitment and generosity inspires me. I always leave a visit with them feeling better than when I arrived.

I have the privilege of handling the checks sent in by our many friends of the Community Foundation throughout the year. While I don’t get to spend time with each of them, it’s rewarding to me that they see C3F as a trusted partner to care for the contribution they offer.

These people, and countless others, bring with them generosity and a sense of gratitude. We share a love for our community and want the best for our neighbors. The Community Foundation provides partnership to organizations making a difference close to home, and an avenue to make a lasting impact. We work hard to include all of those meaningful elements in the look and feel of our communications.

Today I’m excited to share that we will be launching a new look for C3F in our annual report coming out in July. I hope you feel our intention to build on grounded stability and trust with this exciting move forward in our branding. Thank you for being a part of our growth and for helping us build a vibrant community to last for generations.


Welcome Bekah



We're excited to introduce all of you to our new Administrative Assistant, Bekah Rutz!

Bekah brings with her a broad and varied work and educational background, with experience in event planning, volunteer coordination, administration, and even organic gardening. She earned her BA in Communications from the University of Colorado Colorado Springs and a Certificate in Sustainable Business Management from the University of Cambridge.

Raised in Colorado Springs, CO, Bekah relocated to Michigan in 2017 and decided to make Charlevoix County her home in 2021. With a passion for nonprofit work and a community minded spirit, she is excited to join the C3F team. “As lifelong volunteer, I understand well the connection between nonprofit programs and community vibrancy,” shares Bekah, “and I’m looking forward to being a part of the Community Foundation’s mission to enhance the quality of life for all citizens of Charlevoix County, now and for generations to come.” 

If you're in the neighborhood, stop by and help us give Bekah a big C3F welcome!









meet anna young

We are proud to introduce our new Board of Trustees member for 2024, Dr. Anna Young! Anna served as a practicing physician in Charlevoix County for more than 30 years. She also worked with the Health Department of Northwest Michigan with their Hospice program, served as a physician at Grandvue Long Term Care for 14 years, and is dedicated to working toward strengthening access to health care in our region. Anna served on the Charlevoix Hospital board, helped children in our community through Kiwanis, and served on the board of BASES. Married with two adult children, she is grateful for the wonderful educational opportunities and outstanding natural beauty and outdoor recreation this region offers. As a community leader she is dedicated to both the protection of our natural resources and enhancing educational opportunities for Charlevoix County citizens. Anna shares, “It is an honor to be able to serve on the board of the Charlevoix County Community Foundation and support its mission to improve and enrich the life of all who live in our area.”




happy anniversary

This month we're celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Ethel Coeling Environmental Fund! The gift she left us in her will was the catalyst to prioritizing environmental grants at C3F. Her fund, when added to the funds and donations of other like-minded donors, created our current Environment & Land Use Grant cycle. This cycle has made grants of over $4.4 million to area nonprofits, with $815,000 of that total coming directly from Ethel's fund.









What will your legacy be?

Our Legacy Society members are people who care about our community and included C3F in their Will, trust, or IRA to leave a legacy that will benefit C3f and area nonprofits forever. Learn how you can join Dan and Martha Mishler today.



 read dan and martha's story here







grant info session

Want to learn more about how to apply for a 2024 C3F Grant but weren't able to participate in our February 6th Zoom session? Follow the link below to watch the one-hour presentation that includes information about how to apply for grants and presents any changes or updates to the grantmaking program.











join the conversation on instagram

Stay up-to-date with all the latest news and information about C3F and our programs by joining us on our Instagram Page! Just seach for us at CharlevoixC3F or follow this link.












GRANTS IN ACTION - solar boat washing station

Did you know? There is a new law requiring boaters to clean, drain, and dry their boats after exiting a body of water in Michigan, and before entering another body of water. This new law is intended to help stop the spread of invasive species in our beautiful lakes and rivers. Currently, one local organization is leading the pack in providing a practical way to comply with this new law. Thanks to an Environment & Land Use grant from C3F, Walloon Lake Association and Conservancy has installed solar boat washing stations at 4 of the 6 boat launches on Walloon Lake. Their larger goal is to have a boat wash station at all 6 of the launches, so they are well on their way, thanks to support from grants, the community, and collaboration with local townships. Right now, the only invasive present in Walloon Lake is Eurasian milfoil, and according to board chair, Russ Kittleson and former Executive Director, Josephine Roberts, (pictured with C3F Staffer, Ashley Cousens) they did not see an increase in that plant this year, a credit to the over 2,500 uses of the new boat wash stations around the lake. Each boat wash station includes a brush, vacuum, blower, and other tools to help boaters remove plants and water from their boats when they are ready to leave the lake. In this way, one small action from boaters can help to make a big ripple effect in protecting our beautiful natural resources.




GRANTS IN ACTION - Don & Eileen Klein Nature Trail 

We love a good collaboration! And the community of East Jordan is delivering a great one, as the team of partners bring the Don & Eileen Klein Nature Trail to fruition. A group of citizens, plus the City of East Jordan, Little Traverse Conservancy, Friends of the Jordan River Watershed, C3F, local businesses, and community donors are seeing the fruits of their labor! A grant through the C3F Geographic Enrichment cycle last year helped to bring the first trail segment to life. Beginning at Sportsman's Park, the universally accessible trail will continue on, with boardwalks and packed gravel, winding its way through the Jordan River Valley and up to meet the Rogers Homestead Preserve on the corner of Erie and Echo Streets in East Jordan. Way to work together to bring something truly awesome to our community!



grants in action - Good Neighbors food pantry of Boyne City 

Good Neighbors Food Pantry has been using a trailer (loaned to them each week by a friend of the pantry) to pick up the weekly 1,800 pounds of food from Manna Food Project in Harbor Springs, to stock the pantry in Boyne City. This trailer was old and in need of major repairs to make it safe for volunteer drivers. Grant funds helped Good Neighbors Food Pantry to purchase a new trailer with a braking system, which will provide the pantry with many years of reliable service.


grants in action - the honor star

Students from East Jordan and Boyne City designed and created a ten-foot stainless steel star in honor of local veterans through an artist in residence program hosted by the Jordan River Arts Council. With help from a Geographic Enrichment grant, JRAC hired Ann Gildner, an artist from the Industrial Arts Institute, to work with East Jordan High School welding students to design and build a sculpture for the Jordan Art Walk. Students brainstormed the words to be included on the star, which describe what it means to be a person in service to our country. A strong partnership emerged between JRAC, EJPS, Dave Muladore's welding class, and the American Legion through this work. The sculpture is now in a place of honor in the newly redesigned American Legion Veterans/ GAR Park on Main Street and is a permanent addition to the Jordan Art Walk.


GRANTS IN ACTION - Raven Hill discovery center - Smithsonian spark! Places of innovation exhibit

A recent Arts & Culture grant helped bring students out to Raven Hill Discovery Center for field trips to see the Smithsonian Spark! Places of Innovation exhibit while it was here, from August to early October 2023, showcasing innovations in rural areas. Cheri Leach also talked to students about some of the innovations at Raven Hill, like the magnet table, the energy bike, and the periodic table of elements. Connecting science, history, and art during a recent field trip, Cheri led 4th graders from Boyne City (pictured) through a couple of rooms and then everyone spent some time exploring the hands-on features of the Spark! exhibit. Students were connecting what they learned at Raven Hill with what they were learning in their science classes at school and had fun doing it! The Smithsonian exhibit may have moved on, but there's always lots to see and learn at Raven Hill any time of year. 




grants in action - seed to salad program at EJPS

Last year, an East Jordan Geographic Enrichment Grant to EJPS made a huge difference for the school's outdoor garden program "Seed to Salad". 

With the support of a C3F grant, lots of donors and the help of the Shoe Club and the community, the Seed to Salad program installed a new hoop house and revitalized an indoor growing area. They purchased growing racks and lights for the indoor space and renovated the windows to provide light for plants. Students’ lives are being enriched through these additions – they are able to continue their hands on learning by growing plants year-round.


Youth Needs Grant success story - Boyne District Library

The C3F Youth Advisory Committee supported the Boyne District Library with funding to host “Family Dinner Book Club Nights” every Tuesday in March 2023. Families could join Ms. Mary for a delicious meal, reading of a children’s book, casual discussion, and activities for kiddos - all free of charge. By listening to the book reader, the children learned about how they can cope with their "worries" and "whatifs". Then they created a friendly looking "worry friend" out of yarn during craft time to help share their feelings when they can't quit find their words. The YAC were excited to see this grant come to fruition and to highlight youth mental health for young people and their families. Worries don't seem so big when you are able to share them with others.


Legacy society 2023 EVENT PHOTO gallery

Thank you to all of the members of our Legacy Society who came out to our Legacy Society Event at The Historic Train Depot and Heritage Gardens in Charlevoix on August 24th . The Legacy Society is a group of supporters who have made a committemnt to making a difference in Charlevoix County long after they are gone, by including C3F in thier estate plan or will. Are you intersted in learning how to become a member? Or have you included C3F in your will and want to let us know? Contact Sara Ward for more information.



YAC Meeting PHoto gallery

"The energy and passion for change the YAC members bring to the table is contagious. You can’t help but feel inspired when you watch them lead and grow. We kicked off the YAC year with a day full of activities focused on teambuilding, communication, and belonging. They have a strong foundation so keep your eye on this group!"  --- Megan Havrilla DeHoog



Meet Your C3f event photo gallery

Thank you to everyone who came out to our Meet Your C3F event at Veterans Park Pavilion on August 3rd . A great time was had by all! Congratulations to the Boyne City Public School's Early Learners program who won our drawing for a $500 grant.
*Photos by Kim Mettler, Michigan Barefoot Memories Photography