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History of the Portland Foundation

A community foundation builds and maintains an endowment, the earnings of which are used for philanthropic purposes within that community. Individuals, families, businesses, private foundations, and not-for-profit organizations may all donate to community foundations. At a time when the responsibility for solving local problems and enhancing the quality of life for local citizens is clearly shifting back to the local community, community foundations are in the right place at the right time.

What is The Portland Foundation?

Established December 17, 1951, The Portland Foundation is the second oldest community foundation in Indiana. Its mission is to enhance the quality of life for the people of Jay County, Indiana, now and for generations to come, by building community endowment, effecting significant impact through grantmaking and providing leadership on key community issues. Appointments to the nine-member Board of Trustees include two each by the Mayor of Portland, the Superintendent of the Jay County School Corporation, the Judge of the Jay Superior Court, and the Judge of the Jay Circuit Court. The ninth member is selected by the Foundation Board of Trustees.

An Endowment for the Future

As a result of the vision and energy of three distinguished community leaders: Mr. John Jaqua, Sr., Mr. Hugh Ronald Jr., and Mr. W. Haynes Starbuck, The Portland Foundation was established on December 17, 1951. They recognized that while our community was comprised of residents with diverse and specific concerns and priorities, many shared a common vision of ensuring that the quality of life for us and for those that followed was forever preserved, protected, and enhanced.

Started with an initial gift from the Jay Garment Company establishing the J. Arthur Williams-Orville Easterday Fund in 1952, the Foundation has seen tremendous growth in recent years. Some of this growth can be attributed to The Portland Foundation's participation in the GIFT (Giving Indiana Funds for Tomorrow) Initiative, a program of the Lilly Endowment Inc., The Portland Foundation owes a deep debt of gratitude to the Endowment for the GIFT program.

Learn more about The Portland Foundation

Making Contributions to The Portland Foundation

For more information on making contributions to The Portland Foundation, please reference our Become a Donor page.




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