(January 2016) Brevard resident Ruth Hathaway remembered Transylvania County in her estate plans and, as a result, the Transylvania Endowment received a gift of nearly $334,000, bringing the endowment to approximately $1.2 million. The Endowment's Advisory Board is in the midst of a campaign to grow the endowment to $1.5 million over the next several years.
"Ruth Hathaway's generosity and planning is going to mean a great deal to the people of Transylvania County for years to come," said Advisory Board Co-Chair Sara Champion. "Making a large unrestricted gift to the principal of the endowment means that grants can be awarded to projects of highest need now and can continue to meet needs as they change over time. We are so thankful that Mrs. Hathaway chose to support the region she loved in a permanent way."
Ruth and Ed Hathaway retired to Brevard after careers in Indianapolis. They were drawn to the area by their mutual love of nature. In 1978, the couple moved to the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary at Sherwood Forest in Brevard and were active in the community. Ed was a fixture at the Connestee Volunteer Fire Department before his death in 2009. Ruth volunteered at Sharing House for 20 years and was a charter member and officer of the Transylvania Literacy Council. She was a member of the Brevard Davidson River Presbyterian Church, where she served as a deacon and elder and was involved in the Women's Association. Ruth died in May 2013.
Her assets provided for a family member and upon his death were directed to the Endowment. "When I met with Mrs. Hathaway to assist her with her estate plan, she made it clear that she had a charitable inclination," said attorney Michael K. Pratt. "She asked my advice. I explained the Transylvania Endowment, and that caught her attention. She wanted the assets to benefit the people of Transylvania County, and she liked the idea that a local board would review the expenditure of funds and make grant decisions. She believed strongly that these funds would be in good hands."
The Transylvania Endowment was established in 1998 by a group of local residents as a permanently-endowed resource. The Endowment grows through tax-deductible contributions. As the Endowment's permanent assets grow, the Transylvania Endowment Advisory Board is able to make more grants. Since its inception, the Transylvania Endowment has made 89 grants to 45 organizations totaling $831,824.
The Transylvania Endowment Advisory Board also advises grantmaking from the Richard G. Adamson Memorial Fund, Burlingame Charitable Fund, Duncan-Bicknell Endowment Fund, Lake Toxaway Charities Endowment Fund, My Brother's Keeper Fund, Bobby Orr Memorial Fund for Transylvania County Sherriff's Department, Karen Wilde Memorial Fund for Brevard Police Department and the Transylvania Directors' Fund.
The local volunteer Advisory Board works to raise awareness of the Transylvania Endowment and to build assets for the future. These board members are: Sara Champion (Co-Chair), John Goins (Vice Chair), Don Guffey, W. Andrew Harvill, Char Holbrook, Beth Holimon (Treasurer), Patti Jerome, Maurice Jones, Scott Latell (Co-Chair), Amye McCallie (Secretary), Layne Racht, Margaret Riecke, Jerry Stone and Judy Welch.