YDS Reunion 2011
When I graduated from YDS in 1961, I took a job as Foundations Administrator with the Cummins Engine Foundation in Columbus, Indiana. That experience prepared me for a career in the foundation field that included positions at The Cleveland Foundation, The George Gund Foundation and the Nord Family Foundation, all located in the Greater Cleveland area. In the years between foundation jobs, I also worked for Cleveland based non-profit organizations and in the administration of Mayor Carl B. Stokes, Cleveland’s first black mayor.
After serving as director of the Nord Family Foundation, I decided to take training as an interim minister and subsequently served interims in two Cleveland area Presbyterian churches.
Outside of my career, I have enjoyed a wonderful life with my wife, Mary, for almost 45 years. Together we’ve raised four great kids, three girls and a boy, and now enjoy three equally delightful grandchildren. I have been a lifelong gardener, specializing in growing dahlias in recent years, and in retirement am serving on a number of boards including the Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry, the A.M. McGregor Foundation, the Ohio Humanities Council and the Gardeners of Greater Cleveland.
Since I’ve been involved in the field of philanthropy in one way or another all of my life, I’ve been interested not only in what the Bible has to say about it, but also in how it shapes people’s lives. To my way of thinking, as with many matters of faith, most of us listen selectively to the gospel message about money and then generally do as we please. Not only are we reluctant to discuss our giving habits, but in most cases, we feel that what we do with our resources is our own business.
Unfortunately, the gap between rich and poor in our country continues to grow. With government dollars for social and educational programs shrinking, the need for all of us to make greater personal sacrifices increases. Compared to the rest of the world, most Americans have the capacity to do much more than we do. Though we have many reasons for holding on to our money, in light of the gospel message, I think most of these are pretty lame.
Sorry I won’t be able to attend our 50th. Hope the reunion conversations are stimulating.