Donor Stories

Scholarship Honors Founder of School of the Arts

When Claudine Carew (founder of the York County School of the Arts) passed away in 1998, colleagues came together to create the Claudine Carew Spirit of the Arts Award to recognize a School of the Arts student with a scholarship. ……more

Wible Fund Helps Salvation Army Bring Hope, Change Lives

Since 2017, WCF has provided grants to three local charities from the Jenny E. Wible Fund, made possible by a generous bequest from a local resident. Thanks to the prudent management of the endowment, each year the grants have grown. This year, the Salvation Army of Williamsburg received $26,085 to support its vision of building lives by breaking the poverty cycle. ……more

Ben Gave the Gift that Keeps on Giving

Ben Altshuler’s legacy and love of Williamsburg lives on in our community through his bequest in partnership with WCF. The Benjamin R. Altshuler Fund makes grants to support both amateur youth sports and improving access to transportation. Now in its 11th year, Ben’s fund has awarded over $500,000 in grants to our community. ……more

Leaving a Legacy: Julia Everts & Mark Greenawalt Fund

In 2009 Dottie Haramis created a fund at Williamsburg Community Foundation to support nursing scholarships.

This year, after reading a particularly moving thank you note from the scholarship recipient, Dottie realized that if she made a plan to keep the scholarship going through her will, she could keep making this kind of personal impact on future nurses for years. ……more

The Perisie Scholarship Fund

After experiencing some health issues themselves, Jim and Halide Perisie felt strongly that there was a real need for more general practitioners in Williamsburg. They decided to include Williamsburg Community Foundation in their estate plan, to create a scholarship fund for medical school students. The Perisie Scholarship in Memory of James P. and H. Bihin Perisie will provide for one scholarship each year for a female student from greater Williamsburg to attend medical school in Virginia or North Carolina. ……more

Gwendolyn’s Wish

Gwynn Sawyer was passionate about providing for the welfare of animals and wanted people to be able to continue to enjoy the companionship of a pet even if their financial circumstances changed. Named in Gwynn’s honor by fellow volunteers who were inspired by her dedication, Gwendolyn’s Wish helps those with financial need by offering veterinary care for their pets. ……more

Kiwanis Club Partnership

April 11, 2019, Williamsburg, Va.Williamsburg Community Foundation (WCF) and the Kiwanis Club of Williamsburg Foundation are excited to announce a new partnership between the two organizations. This year, the Kiwanis Club of Williamsburg Foundation established a charitable endowment fund at WCF. ……more

Williamsburg Beautification Fund

In February of 2018, the Williamsburg City Council unanimously approved the creation of the City Beautification Fund. The City provided seed money to establish the Fund at the Williamsburg Community Foundation, and the fund will make its first grant in 2019. ……more

Donor-Advised Funds

At WCF, you can create a Donor-Advised fund, a kind of “charitable checking account.” You receive a tax deduction in the year your gift is made, then make distributions from the fund to the causes you care about, on your own schedule. You can choose to support causes locally or nationally through your fund. ……more

Improving Quality of Life

Barbara Wilkinson and her husband Hans von Baeyer give to the Foundation’s Health & Community Wellness Fund because it allows them to support a variety of organizations that promote health, such as Angels of Mercy Medical Clinic, which now serves the area’s homeless thanks to a grant from Williamsburg Community Foundation. ……more

Connecting with Kids and Families

Corinne Garland believes that families of children with exceptional needs require exceptional resources. With help from a WCF grant, One Child Center for Autism offers Kids’ Night to give families relief from the responsibility of childcare, while also giving kids with special needs, and their siblings, a fun evening together. ……more

Building Community through the Arts

As the owner of an interior design firm, Jim Mundy has been in the business of making the world a more beautiful place for forty years.

Thanks to Jim’s contribution and many others, the Foundation is able to fund organizations such as the Armed Services Arts Partnership, a non-profit that helps veterans, service members, and military families reintegrate into their communities through the arts.


Keeping Seniors Connected

By giving to the Senior Services Fund, Bill and Liz Wilhelm are investing in vital programs like Senior Champions to ensure that seniors can be an active part of the community. A program of the Senior Living Foundation, Senior Champions provides adult day services at no cost, giving family caregivers much needed respite.


Sustaining our Natural Resources

Doug and Mary Jo Headley give through the Environment and Conservation Fund at the Community Foundation. Both Doug and Mary Jo feel strongly about caring for natural resources.


Educating Future Leaders

When Jim Joseph talks about his wife Marjorie, you can hear the pride in his voice. “She loved this community, and she wanted to help this community. So when my daughter Lynn suggested creating a memorial scholarship in her mother’s name, it just fit.”


Jenny E. Wible Fund

A cashiers’ supervisor in Colonial Williamsburg for over twenty years, Jenny Wible worked hard, cared deeply for her family, her pets, her flowers and her faith. She lived a fairly ordinary life; but upon her passing this year at age 94, Jenny did something extraordinary for her community. Her estate gift of $3 million – the largest gift in the Foundation’s history – created The Jenny E. Wible Fund at the Williamsburg Community Foundation to support three organizations that reflect her deeply held values: Walsingham Academy, St. Bede Catholic Church, and the Salvation Army of Williamsburg……more

Giving is a Beck Family Tradition

By Margaret Beck Pritchard

From an early age my parents instilled the importance of the giving experience in their three daughters. For many years each of us donated funds to support individual organizations of our choosing. About ten years ago we became involved with the Williamsburg Community Foundation. Since that time, the Foundation has provided us with an opportunity to become more engaged with the needs of our community while at the same time it has helped us to define and strengthen our individual and shared family values… more

Wason Fund for Public Safety

The Wason Fund for Public Safety, established by Harry and Judy Wason, enables law enforcement and campus police on the Peninsula to use a special app to keep residents safe; this includes the Newport News Sheriff’s Office, York County Sheriff’s Office, the City of Hampton Police Department, Hampton University Campus Police and Christopher Newport University Campus Police. The app has been implemented in all of these jurisdictions…..more

The Avalon Endowment Fund

In December 2015, Avalon: A Center for Women and Children established an agency endowment fund with the Williamsburg Community Foundation. Avalon provides shelter and support to those experiencing domestic violence and sexual assault and those who are survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in the Greater Williamsburg area…more

The John D. Walker Memorial Endowment Fund

When Art Walker’s brother, John, passed away unexpectedly in 2014, Art worked through WCF to create the John D. Walker Memorial Endowment Fund. The Fund provides annual disbursements to Dream Catchers (which Art helped found in 1992) to support staff training, which is critical to keeping the Center accredited – and insured...more

Formula for a Scholarship

When Rob and Jill Swain decided to create a permanent Scholarship Fund at WCF this spring, they sought inspiration from their own educa-tional experiences and those of their son, Connor (Jamestown H.S. ’16). Jill, with a degree in Chemical Engineering, and Rob with an MBA and a former basket-ball coach, share a love of basketball with Connor. ..more

Jane and Bob Taylor

Jane and Robert Taylor didn’t come to Williamsburg fifteen years ago to do needlepoint, garden or golf (although they do all these things). Instead, they came to lend their skills in finance to many of the organizations that make this community work. As Bob puts it, “This is not a retirement community. There are a lot of retirees that come here, but they provide extraordinary skills for the community. They serve on the visiting faculty at the college, on other boards.” …more

William C. and Elizabeth J. Wilhelm Funds

Touching lives in the places that shaped their own, Bill and Elizabeth have contributed to and set up need-based college scholarships for high school graduates in their respective hometowns. For Elizabeth, this is Tarboro, NC, while Bill’s roots are in New Jersey. With a scholarship fund established through WCF they helped a chemical engineering student attend Bill’s alma mater, the New Jersey Institute of Technology....more

The Genevieve McGiffert Memorial Fund for the Musical Performing Arts

A fitting legacy of the woman who inspired it, The Genevieve McGiffert Memorial Fund for the Musical Performing Arts has distributed $6,500 over the past 6 years to promote the vocal arts in Williamsburg. “It’s exactly what Genevieve would have wanted to be remembered by — a continuing legacy of contributing to the musical life of this area,” her husband Michael McGiffert said when he and Genevieve’s longtime friend Linda Baker founded the Field of Interest fund in 2007…more

Stambaughs and Dawsons Aid Respite Care Center

When the Respite Care Center at the Williamsburg United Methodist Church needed money to assist with art and music therapy for their clients with Alzheimers, Craig and Shirley Stambaugh and Dave and Marian Dawson were there to help...more

Sister Berenice

The Sister Berenice Endowment for Angels of Mercy was created by the clinic to honor one of its founders, Sister Berenice, on the occasion of her retirement. The fund will be managed by the Williamsburg Community Foundation in perpetuity. The Angels of Mercy Medical Clinic provides free services to uninsured residents of James City County, Charles City County, New Kent County, York County, and the City of Williamsburg....more

Williamsburg Area Faith in Action (WFIA) is a unique program that matches volunteers with seniors and adults with a chronic illness or physical disability who are striving to maintain independence in their own homes...more