Date:        November 28, 2005               For Immediate Release
Contact:      Wendy Roy, Executive Director
          Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation

NASHWAUK RESIDENT LEAVES $300,000 TO THE Nashwauk Area Community Fund

Nashwauk, Minnesota:  
Marion Kumpula, longtime resident of Nashwauk, passed away in October leaving a legacy of over $300,000 to the Nashwauk Area Community Fund, an affiliate fund of the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation.

Throughout her life, Marion demonstrated the breadth and depth of her concern for others. She was a very active member of the United Methodist Church and helped open the Nashwauk Food Shelf. In 1997 she established the J.W. Kumpula Scholarship, in honor of her husband, for students attending Nashwauk High School.  A $2000 scholarship is given annually.

But her greatest legacy may be her diligence in not only funding the Nashwauk Area Community Fund, but in making sure that it had the proper leadership. It wasn’t easy to say “no” to Marion when she asked Nashwauk citizens to volunteer to the Nashwauk Area Community Advisory Committee. At the age of 90, she was still attending meetings and directing the formal organization of this Advisory Committee, knowing she wouldn’t be around to call meetings and be the major fundraiser forever.

At her death, Marion Kumpula also left a financial legacy to the citizens of Nashwauk with her bequest of over $300,000 to the Nashwauk Area Community Fund. This gift quadruples the current value of the endowment. The Nashwauk Area Community Committee should have around $20,000 to give in grants in 2006; and since this is an endowment for charitable purposes in the community, Marion’s legacy will keep giving.

Both Marion and her husband John graduated from Nashwauk High School in the early ‘30’s. They returned to the area in 1977 to retire and became involved in their community.

“Marion’s passion for helping her fellowman really set her apart from most of us,” said Wendy Roy, Executive Director of the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation. “She spoke with her heart, with her actions and with her monetary gifts. She was an exceptional human being, and it was an honor working with her.”

The Nashwauk Area Community Committee members are currently in their first official grant-making cycle. They will award $5000 in grants to area nonprofits in January. Members of the Committee include Larry Majewski, Chair, Terri Hedblom, Rod Hocking, Robert Latvala, Nancy Nunn, Ken Ricker, Deanna Saylor, Ruth Sejnoha, Vicky Shofner, Warren Stolp, and Paul Tweed.

The Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation currently manages over 150 funds in the greater Itasca County area. These funds were established by donors, like Marion Kumpula, who wanted to make a difference in their community. Many other citizens are using the Community Foundation to “leave a legacy” through a planned gift. For more information about the Nashwauk Area Community or for assistance with other charitable needs, contact Wendy Roy at GRACF at 218-327-8855.

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