It's all about people who are passionate about improving the quality of life in the Northland

Executive Director's Summary

Looking back at 2012, I am mindful of all the good work that occurred as a result of citizens and organizations stepping up to make their communities a better place to live.

In this Annual Report we will highlight just a few of the many nonprofit organizations that the Foundation has funded in 2012 comprised of people passionate about improving the quality of life in the Northland. Volunteer fire fighters on the Gunflint Trail raising funds to better their fire hall facilities to protect the community and in that process, creating facilities that offer needed gathering spaces; citizens concerned about protecting habitat so generations from now children can still observe in nature the majestic Great Gray Owl; educators that strive for all children to have quality school programming that enriches minds and creates futures of endless possibilities; community members that desire students to have the supplies they need for school and creatively work with businesses to recycle useable items; advocates working with homeless youth to provide basic needs and support for a changed future; individuals who love the arts and want children in rural communities to have diverse cultural experiences; and disaster responders who worked tirelessly during the devastating June floods to bring comfort and hope to all those struggling. These are just some of the many wonderful projects that the Foundation was privileged to partner with and fund this past year.

Believing that a good education is a passport to the future, the Lloyd K Johnson Post-Secondary Scholarship Program celebrated its fifth year in 2012 awarding four new scholarships to graduating seniors at Cook County High School in Grand Marais, one renewal scholarship and one second renewal scholarship. We congratulate all the recipients and wish them well as they begin their studies at Lake Superior College in Duluth.

In addition to our granting and scholarship work, the Foundation initiated a new committee of the Board to review the state of education in our service area, identify needs and develop a plan to help address current challenges and opportunities. Productive conversations were held with many education experts in the community and we look forward to continuing these discussions and charting a course that will effectively use Foundation resources to positively impact education in our service area for many years.

Looking ahead to 2013, we plan to create a new committee of the Board to review our focus on community and economic development, continue our work in the important area of education and step up and move forward with our nonprofit partners as we carry out our mission of improving the quality of life in North Shore communities.

Joan Gardner-Goodno
Executive Director