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Youngstown Foundation doles out $6M to nonprofits

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Staff report


The Youngstown Foundation awarded a record-breaking $6 million to local nonprofit organizations in 2015, including the largest gift in foundation history of $1.68 million from the Michael Kusalaba Fund to the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County.

The Kusalaba Fund donation will provide the majority of funds needed to construct the library’s new West Side Branch, said Jan Strasfeld, foundation executive director, who was approached by Kusalaba three months before his death about establishing a donor-advised fund.

After moving to Youngstown from West Germany as a child, Kusalaba and his siblings were frequent users of the West Side Branch library. The new building will be named in his honor, said Strasfeld.

The Youngstown Foundation closed 2015 with total assets exceeding $106 million, maintaining its ranking as the largest community foundation in the region and the eighth-largest in the state, Strasfeld said.

The $6 million in grants awarded in 2015 includes Hine Memorial Fund recipients, Crisis Assistance, Mahoning Valley Sports Charities, Support Fund, Restricted and Donor Advised funds.

The Support Fund is a way for donors to maximize their gifts to local charities because the Youngstown Foundation will add an additional 5 percent to any donation of $100 or more made out to The Youngstown Foundation for an approved Support Fund charity. More than $1 million was donated to local nonprofits through the Support Fund in 2015.

Throughout the year, more than 70 local nonprofits received grants from the following donor-advised funds: Jeff & Kimberly Simon Fund, $15,350; John & Sue Casale Family Fund, $16,240; Jason & Leah Wilson Fund, $2,000; Crittenon Fund, $20,250; Barbara Hopper Tinkham Fund, $3,350; Edna B. & Thomas W. Zimmerman Family Memorial Fund, $10,000; E. Perry & Grace Beatty Fund, $65,000; Warren P. Williamson Jr. Fund, $107,000; The Berlin Fund, $61,000; Mary Bianco Whalen RN Memorial Fund, $1,000; Stephen Louis Gymbor Memorial Fund, $4,000; Diane G. Keller Family Fund, $8,000; Monday Musical Club Fund, $47,885; and the Hine Memorial Fund, $1,426,604.20.

For information on grant application guidelines, applying for a grant, or the Youngstown Foundation’s Support Fund charities, visit, or call 330-744-0320.