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  • Colene Read Named 2021 Generosity Award Recipient

    Colene Read, who was nominated by Austin Lee, received the 2021 Elizabeth Kinch Generosity Award. Colene serves as director of Derby Community Family Services. In 2021 she coordinated the annual food drive to benefit the Derby Food Pantry the same week as coordinating the Super Bowl of Caring. In addition to her work with Derby Community Family Services, Read is well known in the community for other efforts, including: serving on the Board of the Chamber of Commerce and the Derby Community Foundation; volunteering with her therapy dog, Molly, at local nursing homes; being actively involved with Derby Circles, a program to help people bridge out of poverty; and, spearheading with her husband, Gary, the campaign that brought Rock River Rapids into the community. “I once heard it said, that if something is good for Derby, you can bet that Colene is out there supporting it,” commented Theresa Hearn, DCF Executive Director, during the award presentation. In addition to the DRC gift basket, Read was given the opportunity to award a $500 grant to the charity of her choice and she selected Derby Community Family Services to receive the grant. She also joins the selection committee for the award which is comprised of past recipients: Carol Keller Becky Robinson Dave Peebler Ben Ray Brody Landers Kyle Russell (on behalf of Citizens Bank of Kansas) Ken Lyerla Jean Garinger The other nominees for the 2021 award were Derby Senior Center Community Quilters, nominated by BreAnna Monk, and represented by Jane Matney and Kay Depriest; and the CJ Seitz Memorial Foundation Board of Directors, nominated by Rob McDonald, and represented by Frank Seitz, Caryn Hendry, Chris Drum, and Lee Noel.

  • Motivating Students to Work Together

    Motivating students to work together to develop their strengths, encourage collaboration, build trust, mitigate conflict and improve communication are among the goals of Team Primetime, a free summer enrichment program for Oaklawn and Cooper Elementary Schools. Team Primetime is a joint project of Derby School District and Derby Recreation Commission located at Oaklawn Elementary School and coordinated by Siobhan Fugle, Oaklawn Elementary staff member. The Derby Community Foundation awarded a $500 Community Enrichment Grant to Team Primetime to support purchasing supplies for weekly themed team-building activities. “Showing students how to engage in team building activities will help them in their future lives,” said Fugle. “Team Primetime focuses on teaching lifelong skills.” Oaklawn and Cooper Elementary schools qualify as Title 1 due to the large concentration of low-income students who need assistance meeting educational goals. Team Primetime provides free academic support as well as social and recreational opportunities for 120 students each summer. The team building activities supported by the grant from the DCF present each team of students with a goal that can only be accomplished by all team members working together. In 2021, the team building themes were “WE are Family,” “Goin’ Green,” “Superheroes,” “Hawaiian Hullabaloo,” “Survivor Week,” and “Olympics.

  • Kinch Honored with Naming of Generosity Award

    In 2021, the Derby Community Foundation lost one of the organization’s founding members and the Derby area lost one of its most passionate advocates--Elizabeth Kinch. In order to ensure that Kinch’s legacy of generosity continues, the Derby Community Foundation, with support from the Derby Recreation Commission, announced in December 2021 the naming of an annual award in her honor– the Elizabeth Kinch Generosity Award presented by the Derby Community Foundation. Inspiring vision and generosity have served as the guiding principles of the Derby Community Foundation since the organization’s inception in 1993. The story of how the DCF was created begins with a Duane Dyer, who was with the Kansas Health Foundation at the time, making a phone call to Kinch in late 1992. Dyer shared information with Kinch about this thing called a “community foundation” and asked if she was interested in creating one in Derby. Not only was she enthusiastic about being part of this new initiative, she shared her infectious enthusiasm with her friends and community leaders in order to create the founding group of the Derby Community Foundation. Kinch was also a board member of the Derby Recreation Commission for many years. Frank Seitz, former DRC Superintendent, credits Kinch for helping to “clean up” state regulations for recreation commissions during her tenure as a member of the Kansas legislature. It came very easily to Kinch to ask people to support initiatives because of her passion for Derby and because of her generous spirit. Kinch’s longtime friend, Becky Loosen, said it best in an article that appeared in the Derby Informer: “The one word that I think describes Elizabeth is that she was generous. She was generous with her time, she was generous with her financial assets, she was generous with her love, and that included her family, her friends and certainly the community of Derby. I would like for her to be remembered for her generous spirit, her love of the community and being a role model for what it means to give back to the community.” The DRC assisted with renaming the award by designing/providing a plaque and an annual gift basket for the award recipient which includes a one-year family membership and Rock River Rapids season passes. The recipient also receives the opportunity to award a $500 grant to the charity of his/her choice. “I am so pleased to honor the memory of my friend and mentor with this award,” said Theresa Hearn, DCF Executive Director. “She is the reason I serve in this position and is my inspiration for wanting to continue to enrich the quality of life in the Derby area through my work with the DCF.”

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  • Scholarship Applications | Derby Community Foundation

    Scholarship Applications Available for Download If you have any questions in regard to the forms, please contact us , and we will be happy to help. Ada Thoma and Melva Owens Memorial Scholarship Application Deadline: March 31 The Ada Thoma and Melva Owens Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to a USD 260 graduating senior who intends to pursue an education career and will be applied to expenses of his/her first year of education after high school at an accredited post-secondary educational institution. The student must have a high school grade point average of 3.0 or an ACT score of 21. Students who receive full scholarships to college are not eligible for this scholarship. Download Braxton Kooser Memorial Scholarship Application Deadline: February 24 The Braxton Kooser Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to a Derby High School graduating senior who plans to attend Kansas State University. The student must also have a high school grade point average of 3.0 (or higher) and must have participated in Derby High School athletics. Download Decarsky Scholarship Application Deadline: March 31 The Decarsky Foundation Scholarship will be awarded to a Derby High School graduating senior, either male or female, who has maintained a 2.75 grade point average, demonstrates a sincere affinity for entrepreneurship and a free enterprise system, and has been engaged in at least some level of gainful employment during high school. The recipient must meet performance requirements established by the DHS Selection Committee, which as a minimum shall include carrying a 12 hr semester load and maintaining a GPA of 2.75. Download Decarsky Scholarship Renewal Form Deadline: March 31 The recipient must meet performance requirements established by the DHS Selection Committee, which as a minimum shall include carrying a 12 hr semester load and maintaining a GPA of 2.75 at a Kansas Institution. Download Derby Wrestling Club Tom and Iris Faust Scholarship Application Deadline: March 29 The Derby Wrestling Club Tom and Iris Faust Scholarship will be awarded to a Derby High School graduating senior who has participated in the sport of wrestling. The scholarship will be applied to expenses of his/her first year of education after high school at an accredited post-secondary educational institution. Selection of recipients will be made without regard to race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin. The student must have a high school grade point average of 2.8 or an ACT score of 21. Students who receive full scholarships to college are not eligible for this scholarship. Download Diana Unkel Memorial Music Scholarship Application Deadline: March 25 The Diana Unkel Music Scholarship Award will be awarded to a USD 260 graduating senior who participated in music at DHS and intends to continue to participate in music after high school graduation. The scholarship is to be applied to the expenses of education after high school at an accredited post-secondary educational institution. Selection of recipients will be made without regard to race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin. The student must have a high school GPA of 3.0. Download Mike Burr Memorial Scholarship Application Deadline: March 28 The Mike Burr Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to a USD 260 graduating senior who participated in the Derby Senior High School music program and intends to apply the scholarship to the expenses of their first year of education after high school at an accredited post-secondary educational institution in Kansas. Selection of recipients will be made without regard to race, color, sex, religion or national origin. The student must have a high school grade point average of 3.0 or an ACT score of 21. Students who receive full scholarships to college are not eligible for this scholarship. Download Multifaceted Student Scholarship Application Deadline: March 25 This scholarship is designed to reward a student who pursued a well-rounded experience while attending Derby High School. Our family believes that a strong public education, volunteerism, and participation in extracurricular activities are critical building blocks in developing the future leaders of our community and our state. Derby Public Schools can provide many opportunities for learning both inside and outside the classroom. Students who took advantage of those opportunities are well on their way to success in the next stage of their education. Many of our family members, including Dan Stang (scholarship co-founder and retired USD 260 teacher), have had meaningful careers in public education and this is our family’s way of giving back. Download Pat Paske Memorial Scholarship Deadline: March 31 For more than 50 years, Pat Paske taught, coached and served as an administrator at several high schools and middle schools across Kansas. At the time of his death, he was in his 18th year as a science teacher at Derby High School. His belief in the importance of public education and the relationships he established with students and fellow educators continued to bring him back to the classroom. Mr. Paske not only wanted each of his students to succeed academically, but took a genuine interest in their personal achievements, challenges and future aspirations. The Paske family is proud to partner with the Derby Community Foundation to assist a Derby High School graduate who shares a similar calling in the field of education through the Pat Paske Memorial Scholarship. Download Polk Family Scholarship Deadline: March 31 The Polk Family has had five generations graduate from Derby High School and has been a part of the Derby community for over 100 years. This scholarship has been established by the Polk Family to assist deserving Derby High School graduates attend college. The Polk Family Scholarship will be awarded to USD 260 graduating seniors (or juniors, if eligible) who demonstrate financial need and meet the scholarship criteria. Selection of recipients will be made without regard to race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin. The student must have a cumulative high school grade point average of 3.0, must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester, and must have participated in DHS extracurricular activities. To be eligible for renewal of this scholarship, recipients must have a cumulative college GPA of 2.75 and be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester. Recipients must annually complete a scholarship renewal form with proof of GPA (college transcript) and return by March 31 (available on Derby Community Foundation website). Download Polk Family Scholarship - Renewal Form Deadline: March 31 The Polk Family has had five generations graduate from Derby High School and has been a part of the Derby community for over 100 years. This scholarship has been established by the Polk Family to assist deserving Derby High School graduates attend college. Selection of recipients will be made without regard to race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin. To be eligible for renewal of this scholarship, recipients must have a cumulative college GPA of 2.75 and be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester. Recipients must annually complete a scholarship renewal form with proof of GPA (college transcript). Download Re’Ana Mekaeil Memorial Scholarship Application Deadline: March 31 The Re’Ana Mekaeil Memorial Scholarship is a one-time award of $500 for a graduating senior from Derby High School. The only requirements are that the student be a current graduating senior at Derby High School who will be furthering their education in the fall. Preference will be given to students who are able to demonstrate through their transcript and their essay that they are going to strive to make the world a better place. Download Rod and Marilyn Caret Scholarship Application Deadline: March 31 The Rod and Marilyn Caret Scholarships will be awarded to USD 260 graduating seniors (or juniors if eligible) who intend to pursue a technical certification and will be applied to expenses of first year of education after high school at an accredited post-secondary educational institution. The student must have a cumulative high school grade point average of 2.75 and must have held a job (no restrictions on type) during junior or senior years of high school. Download Ross Hearn Vocal Music Excellence Scholarship Application Deadline: March 25 The Ross Hearn Vocal Music Excellence Scholarship will be awarded to a USD 260 graduating senior who participated in the vocal music at Derby High School and intends to continue to participate in vocal music after high school graduation. The scholarship is to be applied to the expenses of education after high school at an accredited post-secondary educational institution. Selection of recipients will be made without regard to race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin. The student must have a high school grade point average of 3.0 or an ACT score of 21. Download Steve and Leanne Caret Scholarship Application Deadline: March 31 The Steve and Leanne Caret Scholarship will be awarded to USD 260 graduating seniors (or juniors if eligible) who have demonstrated a willingness to put their best efforts forward and have shown integrity in their academic activities and community engagement. The student must have a cumulative high school grade point average of 3.0, must have held a job (no restrictions on type) during junior or senior years of high school, and must have participated in extracurricular activities. Download Steve and Leanne Caret Scholarship Renewal Form Deadline: March 31 The Steve and Leanne Caret Scholarship will be awarded to USD 260 graduating seniors (or juniors if eligible) who have demonstrated a willingness to put their best efforts forward and have shown integrity in their academic activities and community engagement. The student must have a cumulative high school grade point average of 3.0, must have held a job (no restrictions on type) during junior or senior years of high school, and must have participated in extracurricular activities. Download

  • Home | Derby Community Foundation

    What We Do Inspiring Vision & Generosity In order to better our lives, we must better where we spend our lives. For us, that’s Derby, Kansas! This is why the Derby Community Foundation was established; helping our community and its citizens raise a shared standard of excellence in all we do. The spirit of the Derby Community Foundation is refreshing and invigorating. Its contagious persistence brings together people who yearn to share a vision and have the courage to do something about it. The Derby Community Foundation has supported community improvement projects within our city since the Foundation’s inception in 1993. In that time, the Derby Community Foundation has established a reputation within our community for providing great enhancements. Some of the accomplishments of the Derby Community Foundation are listed below. Community Enrichment Grants We have awarded nearly $500,000 in grants to local non-profit organizations. Our Community Enrichment Grants expand the Foundation’s support to a broad range of organizations throughout the Derby area. The Foundation awards up to $10,000 annually. Whenever there is a need the Derby Community Foundation has answered the call, and that call has been everything that we’ve ever asked for. BreAnna Monk, Derby Senior Services & Transportation Director Contact Derby Community Foundation Thanks for submitting! Submit

  • Donate | Derby Community Foundation

    Information for Donors How You Can Participate in the Derby Community Foundation: Establish a charitable fund bearing your name to provide for your favorite charitable organization or cause, both today and beyond your lifetime. Establish a memorial or scholarship fund in honor or memory of a loved-one to provide support for a particular area of interest. Contribute to the Derby Community Foundation Operating Endowment allowing the Foundation to serve the community into the future. Encourage your favorite charity to establish an organization fund to provide ongoing support for their work. Tell your friends about the Derby Community Foundation and the services we provide. Contribute to any existing fund. The funds are listed below. Donate Contributions to the Derby Community Foundation make a significant difference in the lives of Derby community members. Please consider donating today to help make Derby, KS a better place to live, work, and play. Arlo and Charlotte Lindsey "Kidneys for Life" and Cancer Support Memorial Fund The children of Arlo and Charlotte Lindsey established this memorial fund to honor their parents and to benefit patients who are battling kidney disease and/or cancer. Previous recipients of this fund include St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, Harry Hynes Hospice, John Hopkin’s Research Hospital, Via Christi Foundation, Derby Renal Care Treatment Facility, to name a few. Donate Now Bronze Sculpture Fund Bronze sculptures are synonymous with the Derby Community Foundation. Derby’s 20 bronze sculptures were inspired by efforts of the DCF to bring public art to this community. This fund assists with purchases of new bronzes for public display as well as for professional maintenance of the city’s bronze sculpture collection. Braxton Kooser Memorial Scholarship Fund This Memorial Scholarship has been established to honor an outstanding young man, Braxton Wells Kooser. Braxton was a Derby Panther, only in his second semester of his freshman year, when he was tragically killed in a car accident at the age of 14. Along with being a Derby Panther (football player), Braxton was a beloved son, adored brother, faithful Christian, Derby Tiger (baseball), trusted friend and a Kansas State Wildcat through and through. Braxton’s loyalty to his family, his friends, his faith, his school and his teammates were unmatched. We want to honor this young man by choosing a recipient that displays some of the same character traits and attributes that Braxton displayed; faith, integrity, dedication, teamwork, commitment and perseverance. Donate Now Donate Now Colleen Zirkle Memorial Scholarship Fund The Colleen Zirkle Memorial Scholarship Fund awards an annual grant to The Independent School for designated programs/activities. Donate Now Decarsky Foundation Fund Awards annual scholarships to Derby High School students who meet specific criteria. The scholarships are awarded annually, and the recipients have the opportunity to apply to for annual renewals for three additional years. For attendance at a four year university, the annual scholarship amount will be $4,000 (with renewals, total scholarship value would be $16,000). For attendance at a community college the annual scholarship amount will be $2,500. Donate Now Derby Giving Circle Fund The Derby Giving Circle Fund is collective philanthropy. With the mission of “Find a Need: Fund a Need,” the Derby Giving Circle explores ways to collectively benefit the Derby area. The first initiative of the Derby Giving Circle included raising funds to provide all second-grade students in Derby (USD 260, Faith Lutheran & St. Marys) with a take-home book every month of the school year. Recently, the Giving Circle awarded funds to Derby North Middle School to assist with providing books to students with special needs. Donate Now Derby Rotary Club Fund The Rotary Club of Derby has a long history of supporting education in the Derby community. With the motto of “Service Above Self,” the scholarship is awarded to students who will be graduating from Derby High School and/or who live in Derby, who will be enrolling as full-time students at a college/university/community college/trade school, and who have a proven record of involvement in school, church, and community activities. Donate Now Derby Senior Celebration Fund In 1984 an energetic group of parents came together to create Senior Celebration, an after-graduation party for Derby High School seniors. This event provides a safe and fun atmosphere for DHS seniors to celebrate their accomplishments. Each year, DHS parents volunteer their time, talent and resources to provide Senior Celebration. Donate Now Derby Veterans Memorial Fund The Derby Area Veterans Memorial Walk of Freedom was created in 2011 to honor the brave men and women who have served or are serving in a branch of the United States military. Each branch of the military is represented with a station which includes bricks honoring Derby area veterans. The memorial walk also includes a tribute to Col. Hans Dethlefsen who received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his brave service in the U.S. Air Force. The bronze sculpture, Patriotic Boy, pays tribute to the spouses and families of military veterans who “kept the home fires burning” while their loved ones were serving the country. Bricks are added each fall to the memorial to honor area veterans. This fund supports the ongoing maintenance and additions to the Veterans Memorial in Garrett Park. Donate Now Derby Wrestling Club Tom and Iris Faust Scholarship Fund The vision of starting a wrestling club in Derby, Kansas was fulfilled in 1967 when Tom and Iris Faust laid down six pieces of carpet in their garage on South Kokomo Street and began practicing with three team members, one of whom was their son, Lew. The DWC has provided character building and wrestling instruction to thousands of young athletes and continues to do so as one of the most talented and respected wrestling clubs in the state of Kansas. This scholarship is awarded to a Derby High School student wishing to further his/her education, who has participated in wrestling and who exhibits the positive qualities and character that wrestling provides. Donate Now Diana Unkel Memorial Scholarship Fund The family of Diana Unkel established a scholarship fund in her memory with the Derby Community Foundation. Diana Unkel was a lifelong resident of Derby, taught music at Swaney Elementary School, Derby Sixth Grade Center, and was the accompanist for the Derby High School vocal music program. She also taught piano lessons and served as organist at Madison Avenue United Methodist Church and Woodlawn United Methodist Church. Diana touched the lives of many Derby residents through her passion for music. This scholarship supports Derby High School students who plan to continue to be involved in music. Donate Now Friends of the Library Fund The Friends of the Derby Public Library is a group of citizens who assist in promoting library services and programs. Friends of the Derby Public Library supports Kansas Reads to Preschoolers Week, National Readathon Day, Santa’s Village, library participation in the Big Read, and the StoryWalk at High Park. Donate Now Garinger Agency Fund This donor advised fund was established by Jean Garinger, American Family Agency, to provide charitable contributions to area non-profits. Jean Garinger is a dedicated community activist who supports a wide variety of non-profit programs. Donate Now Grant Program Fund Community Enrichment Grants are awards of up to $2,500 made to grassroots non-profits and government entities doing innovative and meaningful work that fits within the Derby Community Foundation's mission and that enriches or responds to immediate needs within the community. Community Enrichment Grants expand the Foundation's support to a broad range of organizations throughout the Derby area. The Foundation awards up to $10,000 in two cycles each year using a competitive application process. Donate Now Mike Burr Memorial Scholarship Fund Mike was a member of the Derby High School graduating class of 2010. He loved both music and the arts. He was a member of the Marching Band, the Jazz Band, and his own band named All Falls Short. The Mike Burr Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to a USD 260 graduating senior who participated in the Derby High School music program. Every parent hopes that their child grows to fill their potential. This scholarship doesn't require a specific field of study, but instead is to help the recipient reach that potential. Donate Now Pat Paske Memorial Scholarship Fund The family of Pat Paske established a scholarship fund in his memory with the Derby Community Foundation. He taught, coached and served as an administrator at several Kansas high schools and middle schools over 51 years. Since 2004, he was a science teacher at Derby High School and spent several earlier years in Augusta and Eureka schools. Patrick coached basketball, football, golf and track during his career. Patty Anthony Memorial Fund The family of Patty Anthony established this memorial fund to honor her life and to benefit people with disabilities as they participate in recreational activities like Special Olympics. Patty was a member of the Special Olympics team at Starkey, Inc. in Wichita for many years and truly enjoyed the games. She also enjoyed participating in other recreational activities with her peers, including bowling, skating, dancing and swimming. A grant is awarded annually to the Derby Free Spirits, a recreational group for people with development disabilities coordinated by the Derby Recreation Commission. Donate Now Donate Now Richard W. Dennis Memorial Fund The family of Richard W. Dennis established this fund to honor a “life well lived.” Dick Dennis was owner of Dennis Insulation, a member of Rotary Club of Derby, and “larger than life” longtime resident of Derby. Grants from this fund will support local efforts that were of interest to Dick, including green spaces, trees, and feeding children. Donate Now Re’Ana Mekaeil Memorial Scholarship Fund Re’Ana Mekaeil was a 9-year-old girl from Derby who lost her battle with cancer on August 25, 2017 - just one week into her 4th grade year. She attended Pleasantview Elementary from Kindergarten through 2nd grade, and then Park Hill for 3rd and the beginning of 4th grade. When she grew up, she wanted to be a missionary or an art teacher. Although she will never get the opportunity to achieve her grown-up dreams, her family would like to honor her memory through this scholarship by supporting that opportunity for another Derby student as they pursue their dreams. Donate Now Ross Hearn Vocal Music Excellence Scholarship Fund “Oh, Balderdash!” “I’m from Missouri, SHOW me!” If these terms are familiar to you, then you can count yourself lucky to have spent time in the vocal music classroom of Ross Hearn (and I know many of you did!). During Ross’s 38-year teaching career, he had a positive impact on thousands of students. The Ross Hearn Vocal Music Excellence Scholarship supports Derby High School graduates who wish to continue to be involved in music after graduation from DHS. Ross taught vocal music at DHS for 32 years, sharing his passion for music and his high expectations. He also taught for 2 years at Valley Center High School, Knoxville High School (Iowa) and Wichita High School North, respectively. The lessons learned in Ross’s class were more than musical, they were life lessons. Donate Now Unrestricted Fund/ Fund the Future The Unrestricted Fund supports general efforts of the Derby Community Foundation including operating costs. Contributions to this fund ensure that the DCF will continue to be a viable organization benefiting the Derby area for years to come. Donate Now

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