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Summer 2008

VCCF Scholarship Awards Reach All-Time High

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Donor Legacies Extends to a New Generation

INSIDE Heritage Fund Reaches Goal . . . . . . . . .5 Resource Center Expands . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Star Scholarship Program . . . . . . . . . . .10 Nursing Legacy Symposium . . . . . . . . .14

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2008 marked another milestone for the Ventura County Community Foundation Community Scholarship Program, with a record $1.1 million awarded in scholarships to deserving students throughout Ventura County. The awards were distributed on June 5 at the annual scholarship event, this year held in Camarillo. “This is a significant outcome for the Community Foundation,” says Mary L. Schwabauer, VCCF board chair. Schwabauer recalled 1993, the first year of the scholarship program when it dispersed $5,625. “That year, our Selection Committee wanted to weep. We had so many more deserving applicants than funds available. Now there are 79 scholarship funds with assets totaling a little over $17 million, so we are able to make awards to more Ventura County students than ever before.” According to Virginia Weber, VCCF program officer, VCCF’s Community Scholarship Program begins during the late summer and early fall with an analysis of the scholarship funds and how much is available to award based on VCCF’s spending policy and investment returns. Each scholarship award has different eligibility criteria, established when the donor(s) created the scholarship fund at VCCF. Once the available amount for each opportunity is established, the annual Scholarship Guidelines are published and distributed throughout the county. The guidelines describe each scholarship opportunity with the specific eligibility criteria, the average number and amount of awards, and a student profile. Following press releases and other public media announcements, the guidelines are mailed to Ventura County high schools, community colleges and universities,

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Ventura High School graduate Nicole Jahng receives award from Sylvia Mack and Mary Schwabauer. She received the Berenice Barnard Music Education Scholarship and the Berenice Barnard Music Specialist Scholarship.

youth serving clubs, libraries, and more. The guidelines are also posted along with the official application form on the VCCF Web site at www.vccf.org/scholarships.html. Most of VCCF’s scholarship awards are for undergraduate study, but some are for advanced educational pursuits, including the Roy A. Gustafson Memorial Scholarship. This award (about $3,100 for four students in 2008) is for students who graduated from a Ventura County high school and who have

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President’s Letter

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As VCCF reviews its strategic planning goals this spring and looks at the landscape around us, it seems clear that we are at a special place to shape community philanthropy for Ventura County: • National and local data reflect the potential for a new golden age of philanthropy. • The economic pressures from Los Angeles County and the opportunities for businesses and individuals arising from globalization creates a new focus and energy for Ventura County. • The unparalleled resources of our region continue to remind us why we should fight to protect and shape our future. • The track record of the Community Foundation in addressing community priorities lends confidence to working together in the days ahead to transform community. Three recent examples come to mind, where VCCF has demonstrated a facility for working together in partnership to advance our common agenda: • The Partners in Nursing’s Future collaborative with CSU Channel Islands is defining workable strategies to address the nursing crisis, emerging from a national collaborative launched by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. • The Civic Alliance (a VCCF initiative) has been collecting community input around different visions for our future, newly published in the first phase of the Compact for a Sustainable Ventura County, which seeks to build a common vision for the future development of our region. • The Freeze Fund, a joint fund established by the United Way and VCCF, pulled together 30 local nonprofits to address the immediate needs of local workers, setting up a process that worked quickly and effectively. A community foundation is by its nature both a complex collection of stakeholders united in

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harnessing the power of philanthropy as well as a nimble responder, reflecting both the needs of its geographic region and the role of community leadership around priorities that invite donors and funders to work together. The Freeze Fund was a profound example of such leadership, both in working together with the United Way to pool local responses and in attracting statewide capital to our region in ways that made a huge difference in the lives of those affected by the January 2007 freeze. In our day-to-day efforts, the power of local philanthropy is harnessed across a matrix of issues that are explored elsewhere in this newsletter. They include supporting local nonprofits from endowments established in safety and security at VCCF, investing in youth through an extraordinary and powerful stake in scholarships established by donors. Women, Latinos, farmworkers, social justice and local heritage protection are a few others where donors work together at VCCF making a difference, year after year. In our community grantmaking where we harness the resources entrusted to us to address today’s problems, we work together to improve our community by: • Strengthening the needs of local nonprofits, sometimes in crisis. • Mental health training and assistance. • Grantmaking to strengthen the arts. • Countywide engagement over regional issues that matter to each of us. • Disaster training and planning. • Exploring solutions to homelessness.

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First Board Chair Honored by VCCF

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The Ventura County Community Foundation recently honored its first board chairman and founder, Alan Teague, with a lasting recognition. As VCCF expands its office space, one of its newest conference rooms (located on the second floor at the organization’s headquarters in Camarillo) has been named in his honor. A placard outside the conference room recognizes Teague and his contributions. “The board is pleased to honor Mr. Teague’s generosity and longstanding dedication to the Ventura County Community Foundation and its mission. We are delighted to be able to do this,” said Mary L. Schwabauer, chair of the board of directors for VCCF. Teague is a successful businessman, politician and volunteer and has been active with nonprofits throughout his career, raising millions of dollars for health and charitable causes. He is currently the chairman of the Limoneira Company of Santa Paula and a former mayor of the town. Teague was also a recipient of the prestigious Jefferson Award for volunteerism in 2000. He continues to serve VCCF as a member of the Martin V. and Martha F. Smith Foundation board.

Tim Gallagher Elected to Board

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Author, publisher and speaker on free speech and First Amendment issues, Tim Gallagher was elected to the VCCF board of directors, effective January 2008. Gallagher is president of 20/20 Consulting in Westlake Village, specializing in reputation enhancement and building Internet-focused businesses. Gallagher spent 30 years in the newspaper business where he served as editor of the Ventura County Star from 1995-2004 and as the publisher of the publication from 2004-2007. Prior to moving to California in 1995, he was editor of The Albuquerque Tribune in New Mexico. He and his wife Cheryl reside in Somis and have six children ranging in age from 12 to 29.

"We are delighted to have Tim as a new board member," said Board Chair Mary Leavens Schwabauer. "His expertise and experience will add much to future decisions and discussions involving the philanthropic message we continue to share with the public. We consider it a real opportunity and privilege to have him as a part of the group, particularly considering his many efforts throughout the county to offer assistance and his presence."

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$60,000 in Grants Awarded at Destino Grants Reception/Fundraiser

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The Derby Club at Seaside Park in Ventura was the location for the 12th annual Destino grants reception fundraiser on Thursday, April 18. Eight grants totally $60,000 were awarded to programs serving the county’s Latino community. Rudolph I. Estrada, business executive and former commissioner to the White House Commission on Small Business, served as the event’s keynote speaker, sharing his experiences in developing a successful career. This year the Fund’s grant priorities included reading and financial literacy as well as strengthening the Latino Health Workforce.

2008 Destino Grant Recipients: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County, Inc. $10,000 for the Fillmore/Piru Mentor Program Health Career Initiative, exposing middle and high school youths to a wide variety of health careers. Boys & Girls Club of Greater Oxnard & Pt. Hueneme

“The Fund received $200,000 in requests for program support,” noted Vision Committee Chair Hank Lacayo. “The need is great. What we have done differently this year in hopes of helping even more individuals is have this event also serve as a fundraiser. Proceeds will go to the Destino Scholarship Program, which offers scholarships to students who want to go to college.” Over $2,800 was raised and will be contributed to the scholarship fund’s endowment.

$5,000 for the Money Matters Program, teaching junior and high school youths financial skills through interactive activities. California State University Channel Islands Foundation $10,000 for diversity scholarships for the Nursing Program students. Funds will enhance the scholarship pool available for students in need of financial aid to pursue a nursing program and career in nursing.

Destino: The Hispanic Legacy Fund was established in 1996 by local residents in partnership with the Ventura County Community Foundation and is dedicated to meeting the needs and creating philanthropic and leadership opportunities for Latinos in Ventura County. The Fund’s purpose is to build a permanent endowment and create an enduring source of annual grantmaking to organizations that are serving and strengthening the Ventura County community.

El Centrito Family Learning Centers $9,255 to support the Parent and Child Interactive Literacy Activities component of the Family Literacy Program, which includes a daily 45-minute parent/child interaction of literacy activities.

Since its founding, Destino has given 102 grants totaling over $729,000, impacting over 42 community organizations and approximately 34,000 Latino youth and adults in Ventura County.

Friends of Blanchard Community Library $3,745 for the financial resources and economic education component of the Family Literacy Program, providing financial information that is designed for Santa Paula’s immigrant population with low English literacy levels. continued on page 9

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Heritage Fund Reaches $400,000 Endowment Goal Named Funds Represented in the Heritage Fund are: Bambi McCormick Clark & Jim Clark Fund Berenice and Dave Strathearn Fund Chase Bros. Dairy Fund Leonard and Nina Butler Heritage Fund Leavens Ranch Heritage Fund James Blackstock Family Fund L to r: Carol Lamb (family member) welcomed Mary Schwabauer (Vision Committee chair), Mariam Sprankling (author and Conejo Valley Historical Society member), Sandra Hildebrandt (executive director, Conejo Valley Historical Society), and Susie Parker (Named Fund holder) to celebrate achieving Heritage’s goal.

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A fund dedicated to preserving the history and protecting the heritage of Ventura County has made a little history of its own. The Heritage Fund, established in 1999, achieved its $400,000 endowment goal in late 2007. “This will allow us to return to grantmaking, after not granting any new projects for seven years,” noted Mary Schwabauer, chair of the Vision Committee and long-term volunteer for this effort. “We are happy to have the sum of $20,000, that upon review, we can make available to deserving historical societies and museums to carry out worthy projects that they have planned.” In celebration of reaching the endowment goal, the Heritage Fund committee has embarked on a project with local historian and author Cherie Brant. Members of VCCF are working with Ms. Brant to compile a booklet on early philanthropists in Ventura County and the longstanding impact of their gifts. A dinner at the historic CamLam Ranch in Camarillo on Friday, April 18, celebrated the endowment milestone. Charles Johnson, librarian and archivist of the Museum of Ventura County, was one of the speakers, sharing vignettes and anecdotes about the county’s history and the importance of philanthropic support to the work of local historical preservation and expressed thanks for various VCCF projects. N

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Thomas P. and Karen Pecht Heritage Fund Carolyn & John Menne Heritage Fund Harold & Paquita Parker Memorial Heritage Fund Barney Wilkerson Memorial Fund Mahan Heritage Fund Bud and Sally Hartman Heritage Fund John and Elizabeth McGrath Fund Limoneira Heritage Fund Raymond and Betty Swift Heritage Fund Elise and Bill Kearney Family Heritage Fund Carolyn and John Menne Family Fund Martin V. and Martha K. Smith Heritage Fund Briggs-Crane-Hardison Fund Laurence W. and Margaret Fowler Heritage Fund Allan M. Pinkerton Family Heritage Fund A named fund represents a gift or pledge of $10,000 to the Heritage Fund’s endowment. Annual distributions support the yearly grants program.

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Civic Alliance Releases Phase 1 Report on Sustainability

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A year after the initial phase of a multi-year program to advance regional planning in Ventura was proposed, the Civic Alliance has released the “Compact for a Sustainable Ventura County Phase I” report. The report followed a series of public workshops and open houses convened to help define issues of concern. A public survey also was conducted to highlight key topics that were to be considered. The survey results identified four issues of concern: managing the uncertain future of Ventura’s voterapproved urban growth boundaries, protection of its environmental and agricultural heritage, preservation of housing affordability and choice, and maintenance of an efficient and equitable transportation system. Strong support for continued protection of the region’s already-protected open space and agricultural lands, combined with new housing and job growth focused in existing urban areas, was also demonstrated. The project was begun after the Southern California Association of Governments accepted a joint proposal in 2007 from the Ventura Council of Governments and the Civic Alliance to launch Phase 1. Community members were engaged to develop a set of possible scenarios for the future of the county based upon alternative land-use, housing, transportation, and economic development patterns and policies which were provided by local residents and community participants. The public workshops were initiated to discuss initial reports based on the community dialog in June 2007 and the open houses followed in

October 2007. At that time, residents participated in a scenario-building exercise in which they created maps to show how and where they wanted housing and job growth to occur, and how open space and transportation investments should be made. The full report was released on March 1, 2008. Copies are available from the Civic Alliance by calling 805-988-0196, extension 114, or on the Web site at www.civicalliance.org.

Subscribe to Livable Communities Newsletter Ventura County Civic Alliance’s electronic newsletter, Livable Communities, provides updates on communities in Ventura County that feature some of the 10 Tenets of Livable Communities and local projects that reflect these tenets. To subscribe, visit http://www.vccf.org/civicalliance/enews.html. We welcome you to regular updates on Ventura County’s healthy and sustainable future.

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Civic Alliance Workforce Education Convening a Rousing Success

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“Workforce in Ventura County 2007,” a community convening for Workforce Education hosted by Child Development Resources of Ventura County, was held in November to highlight the importance of workforce education for the future of our region. Designed to focus attention on what is working in Ventura County, Workforce in Ventura County was attended by employers, labor representatives, educators, public officials, parents, students and others concerned about the future quality of life and community in Ventura County. VCCA’s expert panel of workforce education programs in Ventura County addressed a number of important issues, including: • What the various programs are doing to impact workforce education and address the gaps between skill sets and employer needs both now and in the future. • The successes and challenges faced by these programs. • Opportunities to learn more about and take away information concerning each program. Panelists included: Hugh Ralston, president, Ventura County Community Foundation (to discuss the current nursing initiative); Richard Duarte, project coordinator, P-16 Council of Ventura County; Robert Wismann, assistant principal, Regional Occupational Program; and Kay Faulconer Boger, Ed.D., dean of Business, Community, Resource & Economic Development and Off-Campus Programs, Ventura College. Other panelists included: Sharon Dwyer, director, Center for Excellence at Ventura College; Capt. David Fleisch, Naval Base Ventura County (N.B.V.C.); Mike Weaver, principal, Weaver Research & Consulting Group, VCEDA – TRIAD Workforce Development Committee; and Cheryl Moore,

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executive director, Workforce Investment Board of Ventura County. Cheryl Moore noted, “One of the interesting facts about the symposium is how many people are already working together to address these problems.” Programs highlighted include the efforts at N.B.V.C. to prepare in the face of a looming transition for the civilian workforce and the WorkKeys program at Ventura College, a national program implemented to match local workforce skills with business demand.

Ventura County Civic Alliance Membership Thanks to broad-based community support, a renewed approach to increasing civic engagement and building community leadership is being celebrated. We welcome everyone to participate in general membership of the Civic Alliance through an annual contribution at any of the following levels: Student/Senior Membership General Membership Colleagues Collaborators Community Builders Stewards Community Leaders Visionaries

$25 $50-99 $100-249 $250-499 $500-999 $1,000-2,499 $2,500-4,999 $5,000

Please visit www.CivicAlliance.org and select VCCA Support for membership options, or contact us at: Ventura County Civic Alliance, 1317 Del Norte Road, Suite 150, Camarillo, CA 93010, 805-988-0196, extension 114, or email CivicAlliance@vccf.org.

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Resource Center Expands Work in Ojai profits throughout the Ojai Valley while enhancing the leadership they represent. “This workshop was very useful, because there are many nonprofits in the Ojai Valley that are relatively isolated from the opportunities for training and networking that are offered at VCCF’s offices in Camarillo,” said Caryn Bosson, former executive director of the Ojai Valley Youth Foundation. “While we are idea rich, we are often lacking in expertise that larger, more developed communities enjoy.”

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In 1991, the Resource Center for Nonprofit Management was established to provide training, research materials and technical assistance to nonprofit organizations throughout Ventura County. In keeping with that charge, a half-day workshop entitled “Building a Board that WORKS: Moving from Effective Governance and Recruitment to Inclusive Fundraising” was held on March 27 at Soule Park in Ojai. It was a rousing success, with attendance of more than 75 board members and staff from at least 30 organizations in the Ojai Valley. Featured speaker was Andy Robinson, a longtime supporter of the nonprofit community who offers consulting and training services on topics ranging from community-based fundraising and major gifts to grant seeking and leadership development. “The workshop was an extremely valuable opportunity for Ojai nonprofits to receive training from a nationally recognized expert,” said Jeff Haydon, executive director of the Ojai Music Festival. “Training sessions like this are usually only offered in big cities at a significant cost to participating nonprofits. Because of the connections and generosity of VCCF, Ojai nonprofits were able to get this invaluable training for a fraction of the cost in our own backyard.” Dena Jenson, vice president and director of the Resource Center, said the workshop was designed to strengthen VCCF’s support for the nearly 300 nonN

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Haydon agreed. “Those of us involved in planning the workshop are acutely aware of the unique challenges facing Ojai nonprofits and have worked hard to be sure that we are addressing the needs of building philanthropic capacity for our own organizations and the community as well as increasing the effectiveness of our organizations by maximizing the efforts of our volunteer boards,” he said. Workshops are nothing new to the Resource Center. Each year, more than 100 training and leadership development opportunities are offered to nonprofit leaders, including staff, board members, volunteers and stakeholders. To receive the printed training schedule, please contact Dena Jenson at 805-988-0196, extension 128, or email her at djenson@vccf.org.

Subscribe to Nonprofit eNews VCCF’s electronic newsletter, Nonprofit eNews, provides updates on upcoming skills-building workshops, regional events, funding opportunities, new resources in the library, Ventura County nonprofit employment opportunities and much more. It is sent twice a month on the 1st and 15th to more than 2,000 subscribers. Don’t miss out on this important source of industry news. To subscribe, visit www.vccf.org/npenews.html. Join in the conversation!

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On-Demand Technology Training Now Offered

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To help nonprofits stay as current as possible with changing technology, the Resource Center for Nonprofit Management now offers on-demand technology training. Visitors to the Technology Center may now access a comprehensive menu of learning modules that address common desktop applications and skills – free of charge. The modules are self-guided and supported by online mentoring provided by live technology experts. Visitors also may instantly access and search hundreds of online books and articles from the world’s leading technology-related authors. Quick reference materials, real-life simulations and practice tests also are available. For more information, please contact Dena Jenson at 805-988-0196, extension 128, or email her at djenson@vccf.org.

Endowment Fundamentals: Workshop Series Continues

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The Resource Center for Nonprofit Management is continuing its series of free workshops focusing on building nonprofit endowments – one for nonprofit board members and one for CEOs and development staff. “With the increasing importance of endowments to long-term stability,” noted VCCF President and CEO Hugh Ralston, “it is important that both staff and board members understand endowments, how they work and how organizations can best oversee and preserve these endowment gifts in perpetuity.” These tailored workshops address the fundamentals of building an endowment for a nonprofit, the importance of policies, oversight and strategies, and how portfolios can be constructed to provide long-term growth. They are ideal for both current endowment fund holders and those nonprofits interested in starting an endowment. For more information or to register to attend, please contact Dena Jenson at 805-988-0196, extension 128, or email her at djenson@vccf.org. N

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Destino Grant Recipients con’t from pg. 4 Mixteco/Indígena Community Organizing Project $10,000 to support the Next Generation project, which aims to create a network of adolescent promotores de salud who will conduct peer outreach in the county’s Mixtec community. VC Medical Center – Family Medicine Residency Program $3,000 for the Summer Student Scholars Program, providing college students who have strong interest in the healthcare field to expand and solidify their interest through a hands-on, eight-week clinical and research opportunity at the Ventura County Medical Center. Westminster Free Clinic $9,000 to support the Teen Healthcare Training Program that offers Latino high school students an opportunity to have a comprehensive healthcare experience where they can actively be part of a medical team; do community outreach; and make a difference in the uninsured, low-income community.

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VCCF Scholarship Funds cont’d from page 1 successfully completed their first year of law school in the state of California. In response to the critical nursing shortage, VCCF is proud to offer scholarship assistance to nursing students pursuing their RN (registered nurse) through the Iris and Roger (Spike) Wilkins Scholarship Fund. The Orfalea Family Foundation fund2008 Scholarship program volunteers ed Orfalea Health Field Scholarship Awards provides scholarship assistance to Ventura County and area-specific professions. “If not for our volunteers, students seeking a nursing degree or pursuing other we would not be able to provide the service, attention to approved majors including occupational or physical therdetail, and do the follow-up necessary to maintain our apy, social work and counseling. The Ventura County high-quality scholarship program,” Weber said. “We work Medical Education Fund, established in conjunction with continually to be sure that each fund donor’s original intent the county of Ventura, offers forgivable loans to nursing with regard to eligibility criteria are followed. We strive to students who promise to practice a minimum of two years make sure every eligible application is considered on a in Ventura County upon completion of their studies. This level playing field in what is a very competitive process. year, thanks to a $12,000 grant for the Orfalea Fund, these stipends will increase. “It is a delight to actually meet these students in person at our annual awards reception. We have been around long Thirty-five volunteers give generously of their time each enough to have siblings of prior recipients receiving year to assist the VCCF Community Scholarship Program awards,” noted Weber. “The program has grown exponenby opening and logging scholarship applications, technical tially. We’re thrilled to have this money to award. Still, no compliance screenings, and reading applications during matter how much we have, there is still much need and the selection process. Scholarship Program volunteers are the process is very competitive. It’s a big job, but it’s fun. from area schools, nonprofits, civic and community groups, It’s happy work.”

VCCF Participates in Countywide

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Since 2004, the Ventura County Community Foundation has partnered with the Ventura County Star offering scholarship awards to graduating seniors at every high school in Ventura, granting an award to those participating in the Ventura County Star Scholars Program.

Star Scholarship Recipient Alex Bryant from Ventura High School at the Ronald Reagan Library Star Scholars reception. Photo credit: Karen Loberg/Ventura County Star N

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VCCF created the Scholarship Fund for Ventura County to raise money every year to provide each of the recipients identified by the Star Scholars Program with an award. It is the only scholarship program in Ventura County that provides at least one award at every high school. Ventura County Star Scholars are selected by representatives from their high schools.

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Donor Scholarship Funds Continue the Legacy

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Michael A. DiRaimondo of Simi Valley had aspirations to work as a paramedic after his tour of duty in Iraq, where he served as an Army medic. DiRaimondo was a crew member on board a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter when it crashed while on a MEDEVAC mission. Michael died on January 8, 2004, and was posthumously promoted to the rank of sergeant. “He was at the peak of his life,” said his father, Anthony DiRaimondo. “He was like a sponge with knowledge. He had such a great, great attitude and felt so good about himself. I take some comfort that he died with the highest self-confidence in himself.” In 2004 the Michael A. DiRaimondo Foundation was established for the primary purpose of assisting people in their pursuit of an education by awarding annual scholarships to Southern California residents (with a preference for Ventura County residents) who have received an Emergency Medical Training (EMT) certificate and who intend to enroll as candidates for a Paramedic Training certificate. Tragedy also struck the Heyne family on May 30, 2005, when a gunman took Jan Heyne’s life. Heyne was a dedicated and valued member of the Amgen family for 12 years.

Star Scholars Program The endowed Scholarship Fund for Ventura County, however, does not yet generate enough to make sizeable awards. Therefore, VCCF works to raise money so awards may be made to each Star Scholar. The dollar amount of the awards depends upon the success of VCCF’s annual fundraising efforts for the program. “This is one of the most grassroots of all of our programs. Investing in scholarships reflects one of the best investments we can ever make: one generation staking the next,” says Hugh Ralston, VCCF president and CEO.

Contributions can be made directly to VCCF or online at www.vccf.org.

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Tony and Carol DiRaimondo attending the 2008 scholarship reception.

Amgen established the Jan Heyne Memorial Scholarship Fund at VCCF, and its endowment has swelled with contributions from friends, family and colleagues. In accordance with the wishes of Jan’s family, the Fund provides scholarships for low-income students across Ventura County who wish to pursue higher education. The oldest child of Joseph and Dorothy Griffard, Jan graduated from Canoga Park High School and attended Humboldt State University. “Through this scholarship, Jan continues to light the way for others as she did each day of her life,” says her husband, Tim (happily married to Jan for 26 years). Jan’s children Jeffrey, Christian and Genevieve have also participated in the awards. Adam Devine, one of the Jan Heyne Memorial Scholarship recipients, relayed, “You have given me a wonderful opportunity to attend the school of my dreams, and I couldn’t have done it without your assistance.” Both the DiRaimondo and Heyne families were on hand this year, providing a link to legacies that will extend the gifts of these two individuals into the next generation. For more information about establishing a Memorial Scholarship Fund, please contact Lindsay Smith at 805-988-0196, extension 115, or email her at lsmith@vccf.org.

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“Open Wednesdays” Program Engages Community

Rapid Success Necessitates Updates to Strategic Plan

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In October 2007, VCCF initiated a new 10-city community conversation in cities throughout Ventura County. Dubbed “Open Wednesdays,” the series was designed to engage local nonprofits, donors, community leaders and elected officials in an effort to develop key community priorities for future VCCF grantmaking. To date, Open Wednesdays have been held in Camarillo, Thousand Oaks, Ventura, Ojai, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Santa Paula, Westlake Village, Moorpark and Port Hueneme. The Open Wednesdays meetings give community leaders in each Ventura County community an opportunity to share with VCCF how priorities relating to key issues such as education, health care, workforce training, nonprofit capacity and stability, youth leadership, the arts, nursing, scholarships for college and the workforce, and other priorities should be reflected in future VCCF programs, services and community grantmaking. Content from these sessions will be collated and reported back for VCCF’s strategic planning efforts and to the Program and Grants Committee as VCCF contemplates its priorities for future community grantmaking.

The best-laid “plans” of… Less than three years ago, the 16-member VCCF board of directors completed and adopted a new five-year update to its strategic plan. That plan included an ambitious goal of doubling endowment assets within the next five years to permit VCCF to double its grantmaking, further strengthening community priorities, and to expand its staff and operations to meet this higher level of service. As of September 30, 2007, the end of the first full year of the plan, VCCF was within 85 percent of reaching that ambitious goal. As a result, an update to its goals will be considered in light of the next three to five years, in anticipation of VCCF’s 25th anniversary in 2012. While the board does not anticipate announcing those goals until later this year, issues being explored include: • Expanded grantmaking focused around the needs of community priorities. • Continued increases in planned and deferred gifts, donor-advised funds, and designated agency funds. • Expansion of the VCCF Cornerstone Fund, which enables the Community Foundation to serve Ventura County more effectively. • Exploring the possibility of establishing a nonprofit center for Ventura County that would provide office space and a gathering site for multiple nonprofits. • Significant enhancements to VCCF technology and its Web platform in order to facilitate easier and more effective donor communication and education. • Continued efforts to expand programming at the Resource Center to meet the needs of boards and staff of area nonprofits.

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Each of those efforts is closely aligned with the Foundation’s overriding mission: to promote and enable philanthropy to improve the community and to build long-term capital to benefit Ventura County. Stay tuned!

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Groundbreaking Held for New Martin V. Smith Center

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Ground was broken on January 24 for the new Martin V. Smith Center for Integrative Decision Making at California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI). The Smith Family made a $5 million gift to CSUCI to establish the Martin V. Smith School of Business. The Martin V. and Martha K. Smith Foundation, a support organization of the Ventura County Community Foundation, supplemented the gift with another $3 million contribution in 2006. Martin “Bud” Smith, was a founding VCCF board member and a significant developer in Ventura County. Bud was responsible for the development of Channel Islands Harbor, the Esplanade in Oxnard, and the Financial Plaza, the two skyscrapers that mark the Oxnard skyline, and was a well-respected county leader. Stacy Canon, Bud’s granddaughter, spoke eloquently about her grandfather at the groundbreaking. “For those of you who did not know my grandfather, he was a great man, a very humble man. He began his business career as the United States was emerging from the Great Depression and entering World War II. It was a difficult time, yet hard work and solid business principals proved successful. My grandfather accomplished all that he did with only a high school education. Just imagine if he had access N

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to a university with a business and economics department. Ventura County operates at a quicker pace than it once did. However, one thing remains the same – we continue to see great investments in our community, such as this university.” Canon added that her grandfather loved Ventura County and that while it proved a perfect fit for his entrepreneurial spirit, he was a man who shared his wealth. “He strongly believed in giving back to the community; a community that continues to provide many wonderful memories for our family. My grandfather had the opportunity to travel the world, and he told me on numerous occasions that Ventura County was by far the best place on this earth to live. He would be proud today to see his family continuing his legacy by supporting the community that he cherished so much.” The Martin V. & Martha K. Smith Foundation was established as a private foundation, and it became a supporting organization of the Ventura County Community Foundation. The foundation has awarded over $7.7 million in grants over the last 12 years. Its funding priorities span such varied causes as arts and culture, emergency services, senior services, youth education, and recreation, with an emphasis on the Oxnard plain.

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Second Annual Nursing Legacy Project Symposium Addresses Nursing Workforce and Practice Environment Issues

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On Friday, April 4, nurses; nurse educators; administrators; nursing students; and funders representing national, state, and local perspectives gathered for a free symposium at the Conference Center at St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard. The Ventura Nursing Legacy Project, a joint effort of the Ventura County Community Foundation and California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI), sponsored the event. Topics discussed included: • Healthy Practice Environment and Magnet Status • Training the Next Generation of Nurse Leaders • RN Career Transition Programs • Clinical Leadership and Preceptor Development • RN Residency and Orientation Programs Rick Martin, senior vice president, clinical operations & chief nursing officer, Hoag Presbyterian Memorial Hospital, served as keynote speaker for the event. He addressed the history of the nursing work environment, the nursing crisis and outlined some practical “how-tos” for creating a healthy work environment for nurses. Laurie Bigham, chief nursing officer, St. John’s Regional Medical Center, offered a local perspective. Bigham was on the committee that helped develop the Consensus Statement on Priority Nursing Issues for Ventura County and has been involved in the VCCF/CSUCI project since the beginning. Nora Maloy, senior programs officer, Blue Cross/ Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation, was also on hand. “The BCBSM Foundation was delighted to partner with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Northwest Health Foundation on their Partnership in Nursing program to support a project designed to address Michigan’s nursing shortage,” said Maloy. “For approximately two years, we’ve worked with nurses from around the Michigan area and nationally as part of our partnership grant. N

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Nora Maloy, senior program officer, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation, and Kathleen Kessler, coordinator of professional education and professional partnerships, Michigan State University, were speakers at the PIN symposium and are PIN grantees from Michigan.

We've come to realize what a special profession nursing is and how special the people who dedicated their careers to nursing are. We are happy to share our experience and lessons learned with the community in Ventura County and hope that we can serve as a model for potential new programs to address the nursing crisis here in Ventura County.” The Ventura Nursing Legacy Project was formed as part of a national initiative funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through its Partners in Nursing’s Future program to develop and test solutions to America’s nursing shortage and is a partnership between VCCF and CSUCI. The project’s goals are to determine priority issues around nursing in Ventura County and to develop a common set of sustainable long-term strategies to address recruitment, retention, health policy and diversity in the nursing profession, with emphasis on developing funding strategies for the Ventura County region. For more information, go to the PIN Web site at www.csuci.edu/orsp/VNLP.htm.

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Social Justice Fund Launches Second Grantmaking Cycle; Irvine Foundation Supports Long-Term Endowment Goal

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The Social Justice Fund (a donor-advised fund established at VCCF) provides grants to organizations actively working to change the root causes of some of the county’s more pressing social, economic and environmental issues. Social justice philanthropy differs from traditional charitable giving because it supports community activists working to create positive and lasting results. In its first successful year, the Social Justice Fund raised and distributed $50,000 in grants to grassroots organizations in Ventura County. It is now embarking on a second grantmaking cycle, with hopes of expanding its grantmaking to meet critical needs in the county.

In addition to continuing to raise funds for grantmaking, the Social Justice Fund will soon begin efforts to grow an endowment to ensure that its efforts to further social, economic and environmental equity in Ventura County can continue. The James Irvine Foundation awarded the Ventura County Community Foundation a three-year challenge grant of $200,000 to help the Social Justice Fund raise an endowment fund. “Our aim now is to build an endowment with enough money to sustain our work into the future,” said Stephanie Angelini, the Social Justice Fund’s chairperson. “The endowment will help pay our

operating costs, allowing nearly 100 percent of every dollar raised to work effectively for change in Ventura County.” The Social Justice Fund employs a unique “Giving Circle” model in which donors contribute money into the Fund and can choose to assist in the development of proposal requests and selection of grant recipients. This serves to connect the donor and grantee communities and raise awareness of social, economic and environmental issues and solutions. For more information on the Social Justice Fund, please visit the VCCF Web site at www.vccf.org and click on “Funds.”

November 20

Celebration and Grantee Reception 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

A Thank You to Donors Due to the volume of individual donations and contributions to VCCF funds and programs since our last newsletter, we are unable to list all of our donors in this issue. Please look for a listing in our upcoming annual report and on VCCF’s Web site at www.vccf.org. We thank you for your generous support of the good work of the Community Foundation, expanding the impact of philanthropy in Ventura County.

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Technology Works for Nonprofits Initiative Offers Business Technology Assessments

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A select number of Ventura County nonprofits are more tech savvy, thanks to the VCCF Circuit Rider program. Launched in 2007 as part of the Technology Works for Nonprofits Initiative, the program provides Ventura County nonprofits with 15 to 30 hours of organization-specific technology expertise and a business technology assessment. Stephen Guine is the skilled technology consultant assigned to the program. “Often there is a perception among nonprofits that in order to even engage in an evaluation like this it is going to cost a great deal of money,” says Guine. “In addition, many of the groups I’ve worked with don’t have a solid understanding of their technology inventory. So if you ask them what they own, they can’t give a solid answer. Thus, many have not taken the time to do the strategic analysis needed in order to figure out here is how we gather all these items together and create robust repeatable imbedded situations that we can carry forward. That is where I come in.” Guine starts by meeting with an organization’s executive team, managers and employees. “I start by saying, let’s take a look to see what you’re doing from a software and hardware standpoint. Then, let’s see if we can come up with some solutions that we can quickly identify where you can cut time in half; eliminate processes, etc.,” says Guine. Guine takes in all the information from his research, does an analysis and then provides a detailed assessment. Lynne West, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County, was extremely pleased with her Circuit Rider Program experience. “It was wonderful. I recommend it to anyone who is as scared to death of technology as I am and who is thinking you have to have a lot of money to have a workable system. It’s simply not true.” Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County’s technology infrastructure was created on a shoestring. “We actually had a donation and bought several computers so we had some hardware in place. The N

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Stephen Guine

rest of the computers were donated or refurbished or hand-me-downs,” West explained. Guine helped the organization address their hardware situation as well as issues regarding spam, software and their server. “It was exciting in a lot of ways because Stephen knew we had to do a lot with very little money,” said West. “He took an inventory of our software and hardware, did an analysis and gave us choices. He really took us through a process and asked us what our needs were, what we were trying to accomplish, and how quickly we wanted to get there.” Big Brothers Big Sisters has implemented its entire plan and has plans to add a virtual network. “We learned a lot, primarily that there really is help out there,” said West. “You can really go first class, and you don’t have to go with something that is going to cost you more than you can afford.” The Circuit Rider program is generously supported by the Amgen Foundation, AT&T Foundation, Weingart Foundation, Verizon Foundation, and the California Consumer Protection Foundation. For more information about the Circuit Rider Program or the Technology Works for Nonprofits Initiative, please contact Dena Jenson at 805-988-0196, extension 128, or via email at djenson@vccf.org.

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President’s Letter continued from page 2

Planned Giving Initiative Launches First Cohort

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The Ventura County Community Foundation’s Planned Giving Initiative has begun its first cohort of five nonprofits currently receiving expert advice and consultation from Director of Planned Giving Ilana Ormond. The five participating area nonprofits are Senior Concerns, Ventura College Foundation, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme, Ventura Music Festival, and Interface Children Family Services. All five receive six consulting hours per month for 10 months, which are provided for a significantly discounted fee. Issues addressed range from the creation of gift acceptance policies to the education of board members and staff, and include discussion of marketing strategies and the use of professional advisors. “The potential for a successful planned-giving program for each of these nonprofits is enormous,” says Ormond. “We are pleased to share the skills and tools that are needed to expand each nonprofit’s capacity to develop and secure planned gifts.” The Planned Giving Initiative was developed by VCCF to educate nonprofits on the importance of a successful planned-giving program with respect to financial stability and sustainability. “Because planned giving creates a pipeline for future funding, it is critical that our nonprofits are prepared to ensure that the charitable capital remains in Ventura County,” said Ormond. Ormond is enjoying her work with the five groups so far. “This position has given me exposure to a wonderful variety of causes. I’m working to help children, benefit seniors, provide social services, and enhance the arts and education, all through the Planned Giving Initiative. It is a pleasure to partner with these nonprofits and make sure that their donors are aware of the many ways in which they may leave a legacy with their favorite causes.” A new cohort is planned for 2009.

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These are only some of the opportunities to work together in Ventura County, to build a more robust nonprofit sector that will help make our communities more effective, address local needs, and extend our legacies to the next generation and beyond. We welcome the chance to find ways to strengthen this good work; to nurture the evidence we see that we really can sustain community in these turbulent times; and to find ways that we can work with others to make a difference in the places we live, raise our families, and build our future. It remains an enormous privilege for us to join in such good work together, transforming communities for good for ever.

Hugh J. Ralston President & CEO

Now Accepting Donations on the Web VCCF is now accepting donations by credit card online at http://vccf.org/donations.html. Please note all vendor fees for online gifts will be deducted from your gift. For more information, contact Donor Relations at 805-988-0196, extension 115. Donations can be made to any VCCF fund or program.

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Investment Return – VCCF Endowment Funds

The VCCF Legacy Society Have you named a fund at VCCF that helps a local nonprofit as the beneficiary of your life insurance policy? Have you created a charitable gift annuity with VCCF that benefits another nonprofit? Have you named the Community Foundation as a beneficiary in your estate plans?

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Performance Summary as of March 31, 2008 Composite

Policy Index*

Fiscal YTD

(5.9)

(6.2)

Last Yr.

14.6

13.7

Last 3 Yrs.

12.9

11.7

Last 5 Yrs.

14.8

13.0

Last 10 Yrs.

8.3

7.0

If so, we are delighted to welcome you as a member of VCCF’s Legacy Society. Members of this group are securing the future of nonprofit causes in the county. If you have partnered with the Community Foundation through any type of planned gift (bequest, charitable gift annuity, charitable remainder trust, life insurance policy or retirement plan), we would be proud to acknowledge you as a member of our society, and we are honored to be chosen as the steward of your legacy.

* Fiscal year to date as of 9/30/07 ** Policy Index: 50% Russell 3000/15% MSCI EAFE After Taxes/35% Lehman Brothers Aggregate Bond.

Asset Allocation Summary as of March 31, 2008

17% 10% 10% 7%

Alternative Funds Large Cap Growth Large Cap Value Mid Cap

10% 19% 27%

Founding members of the Legacy Society left us bequests that have funded scholarships, supported our field-of-interest funds, and provided grants for numerous other nonprofits within our community. Their legacies have grown to touch numerous lives. Please join us in making a difference for the future.

Small Cap International Equity Fixed Income

To share your estate plans, or for more information on how leaving your legacy with VCCF will make a difference in Ventura County, please contact Ilana Ormond at 805-988-0196, extension 122.

Charitable Gift Annuity – Support a Ventura County Nonprofit

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Could you use some additional guaranteed lifetime income? Want to help a local charity and expand Ventura County’s philanthropic resources? Or, perhaps you wish to leave a legacy for good for ever? Create a charitable gift annuity with VCCF and benefit a local charity, the Community Foundation, and the community. For more information about eligibility requirements and program details, contact Ilana Ormond at 805-988-0196, extension 122, or via email at iormond@vccf.org. N

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For Two Lifes (yourself and another)

For One Life (yourself) Age

Rate

Age

Rate

60 65 70 75 80 85 90+

5.5% 5.7% 6.1% 6.7% 7.6% 8.9% 10.5%

60/65 65/70 70/75 75/80 80/85 85/90 90/95

5.3% 5.5% 5.8% 6.2% 6.9% 7.9% 9.4%

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Staff News

Staff Leadership Awards Lindsay Smith was promoted to donor relations officer and will be responsible for being the primary contact for all donors. Lindsay, formerly the development/donor relations assistant, also recently served as the VCCF marketing coordinator. Her new extension is 115.

Kesa Ryono, formerly VCCF’s welcoming receptionist, has agreed to join the Civic Alliance as its new associate, focusing on supporting the membership and development work of this VCCF initiative, as well as stepping in (one-quarter of the time) to provide marketing coordinating assistance for VCCF. Kesa’s extension is 114.

L to r: LaToya Ford, Talon Klipp and Claudia Sanchez.

In April, new recipients of the Staff Leadership Award (SLA) were announced: Claudia Sanchez, finance associate, for her efforts to improve tracking of donations in our database.

Catherine Lee will be working exclusively for the VCCF field-ofinterest funds, supporting the Vision Committees of the Women’s Legacy, Destino, Heritage funds and the Fund for Farmworker Housing. Her extension is 133. “VCCF has a proud commitment to promoting from within wherever possible,” noted President and CEO Hugh Ralston. “We are delighted that Lindsay and Kesa are stepping up to these new responsibilities and appreciate Catherine’s ongoing support of these important VCCF programs. This will strengthen our donor relations and membership efforts and the important staff roles in sustaining our mission.”

LaToya Ford, program & grants assistant, for coordinating yet another record number of scholarship applicants with good grace, humor and accuracy. Talon Klipp, office manager, for his efforts to assist the dismantling and reconnection of VCCF’s computers during the recarpeting of VCCF’s entire offices. Each will receive a $50 gift certificate to Target. The SLA was established in 2004 to acknowledge and recognize staff members who have performed beyond the call of normal duties in advancing the work of VCCF and setting an example of collaborative leadership for the entire VCCF staff. Congratulations to all three!

Ralston Elected to Southern California Grantmakers Board Hugh Ralston, president and CEO of the Ventura County Community Foundation, has been elected to the 2008 board of directors of the Southern California Grantmakers. Founded in 1973, Southern California Grantmakers is a membership association that promotes effective, responsible giving among private sector grantmakers.

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Ralston was also recently appointed treasurer of the steering committee of the League of California Community Foundations. He also serves on the board for the Planned Giving Council of Ventura County, as vice chair of the Community Commission for Ventura County and on the board of the Workforce Investment Board of Ventura County.

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Second Cohort of Board Leadership Institute Graduates 24 The second cycle of the Board Leadership Institute, an intensive leadership training program, graduated 24 board members from various organizations throughout Ventura County. The session participants attended a seven-month training cycle from October 2007 to April 2008 moderated by Dr. Susan Murphy of California Lutheran University. A highlight of this session was the ability to offer English with simultaneous Spanish translation for participants. This was made possible by using headset technology and a professional Spanish translator. “It’s pretty amazing when you walk in the room. It’s like the United Nations,” says Dena Jenson, vice president and director, Resource Center for Nonprofit Management. “I’m very proud of this stride forward and our ability to make this

program more culturally appropriate for our community and to meet the leadership needs of Spanish-speaking board leaders.” The Board Leadership Institute helps elevate volunteer board members’ ability to govern local nonprofit organizations and to demonstrate leadership on behalf of the nonprofit sector. The certificate-training program is taught by experts commissioned by VCCF and complemented by the leadership expertise of the VCCF board of directors and staff members. A new session of the Board Leadership program began in May. Part of the Board Leadership Initiative, these programs are supported through the generosity of the Amgen Foundation, Weingart Foundation, and Wood-Claeyssens Foundation.

For more information about the Board Leadership Initiative, please contact Dena Jenson at 805-988-0196, extension 128, or djenson@vccf.org.

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1317 Del Norte Road, Suite 150, Camarillo, CA 93010-8504 P: 805-988-0196 F: 805-485-5537 E: vccf@vccf.org W: www.vccf.org Philanthropic Stewards for Ventura County. Investing in Ventura County. For Good. For Ever. VCCF has been certified in compliance with National Standards of Excellence for community foundations by the Council on Foundations.

Board of Directors Mary L. Schwabauer, Chair Stacy A. Roscoe, Vice Chair Pierre Y. Tada, Vice Chair Sally S. Yount, Vice Chair Scott B. Samsky, Secretary/Treasurer Hon. Michael D. Bradbury Gary E. Erickson Tim Gallagher Robert J. Katch Henry L. "Hank" Lacayo Terri E. Lisagor Charles Maxey, Ph.D. Timothy J. McCallion Roz McGrath Alfredo Plascencia M. Carmen Ramirez Michael L. Silacci

President & CEO Hugh J. Ralston

Nonprofit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Oxnard, CA Permit No. 210

RETURN SERVICE REQUESTED


Highlights Summer 2008