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LCF’s Top 10 Highlights of 2022

December 30, 2022

Jamie Schloegel, Chief Executive OfficerBy Jamie Schloegel, Chief Executive Officer

Year-end reflection with CEO Jamie Schloegel

The LCF team had big ideas for 2022 and looking back over the last 12 months I’m proud to report the team came through on almost every one of its goals… and more.

I’ve summarized the top 10 things that stand out most to me as I look back over the last year.

Each of these items is a testament to our commitment to our mission of connecting people, passion, and giving in the La Crosse area forever. We’ve stretched ourselves like never before to think “outside of the box” for additional ways we can leverage our resources and infrastructure to support our community beyond just our traditional grantmaking programs.

HUGE thanks to LCF’s Board of Directors, staff, fund holders, and other donors who make all this work possible. Can’t wait to see what 2023 has in store!

Jamie’s 2022 Top 10 Highlights

  1. The City of La Crosse selected LCF to help distribute it’s first $2,000,000 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds through a fair and equitable process. 22 nonprofits were awarded ARPA grants to help reverse the negative effects of the pandemic and lay the foundation for a strong recovery in La Crosse.
  2. We held our first-ever fund holder stewardship banquet in May. (Did you know LCF now has more than 310 unique funds?!) The banquet’s ‘Simply the Best’ theme was selected to extend gratitude to the donors who make LCF’s grantmaking possible, and help them better understand the impact of their generosity in our community.
  3. Dave and Barb Erickson received our first Forever Friends Award, which is given to people who have included LCF in their estate plans and therefore chosen to take care of the La Crosse community forever. Dave and Barb set the standard as our first awardees with their extraordinary philanthropy and selfless volunteerism.
  4. We partnered with the La Crosse Tribune to expand their Extra Effort Scholarship Program. More than $80,000 was awarded to 24 local high school graduates who have had to overcome significant obstacles and challenges in their young lives to get to the point of graduating with their class.
  5. Viterbo University’s Center for Professional Learning and Development revived its Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership Development in collaboration with LCF. We then awarded over $10,000 in scholarships to ensure the program was accessible to anyone who wanted to participate; the first cohort has 21 students and will meet monthly September 2022-May 2023. This partnership is the latest addition to our Nonprofit Resource Center which we launched late last year to offer a plethora of free resources to help nonprofits succeed.
  6. 50+ nonprofit professionals – and the missions they support – were featured in our weekly La Crosse Tribune column “Good Works.” In 2022, this series was all about showing gratitude to individuals who help keep our community nonprofit organizations running, and what inspires them to continue serving others. You’ll have to wait and see what the series will highlight in 2023 come January 2.
  7. In April our Board of Directors met for a two-day retreat to discuss and define its commitment to the principles and best practices of diversity, equity, and inclusion. At LCF we believe philanthropy can be a powerful source for uplifting these principles across our entire community. Our work in this area will continue to expand in 2023 as we engage in a year-long comprehensive strategic planning process facilitated by experts through a DEI lens.
  8. Our team grew by 2! Diane Finnegan joined the team in September as our Accountant after Erin Belby was promoted from Finance Director to Chief Operating Officer. And through a unique partnership with the Community Engagement Program at the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse, and very generous donors Ron and Jane Rada, LCF was selected as one of two sites for a pilot philanthropy fellowship position.
  9. We were awarded a contract from Rotary Works Foundation to service their financial administrative needs, making Rotary Works Foundation our first affiliate organization. This relationship allows our community’s incredible Rotary Club members to focus on what they do best – service to our community – while LCF’s backbone ensures its operations are exceeding all philanthropic best practices.
  10. And lastly, we launched our new La Crosse Giving Catalog on GivingTuesday. The catalog features various needs from local nonprofits to inspire local crowdfunding. It allows anyone in the community to be philanthropic at whatever dollar amount suits their budget. Each quarter in 2023 will bring a new catalog to shop.

Goodbye 2022, hello 2023!