In the 2011 February/March issue of Evansville Business, Mark Schroeder, a fifth-generation Dubois County native who serves as chairman and CEO of German American, said local talent is vital to the bank’s operations. Because of this, he says supporting the community is engrained in the company’s DNA. In July, the organization announced a $100,000 unrestricted donation to 10 community foundations throughout Southern Indiana, meaning the funds could be used however those groups deem necessary.
The Community Foundation Alliance, located at 5000 E. Virginia St., received $90,000 to spread to its nine foundations in Daviess, Gibson, Knox, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh, and Warrick counties, and the remaining $10,000 was given directly to the Dubois County Community Foundation. The Lilly Endowment’s Giving Indiana Funds for Tomorrow (GIFT) program also matched the donation, doubling its total to $200,000.
The alliance helps the foundations establish funds and reinvest into nonprofit organizations. By pooling local resources, the Community Foundation Alliance provides financial, administrative, marketing, and other expertise to create an efficient system so the individual foundations can focus their time and resources on their communities.
“This investment will be used as that local board decides where the greatest needs are,” says Schroeder. “There are unique needs and opportunities in each county. This allows them to target those needs the best. It’s a local solution to local challenges.”
“German American is an organization that is present in many of our counties,” adds Jill Tullar, the alliance’s executive director. “We appreciate their commitment to our communities. This gift will be maximized by the Lilly match to serve more people.”
The GIFT initiative serves 94 community foundations in Indiana and encourages the aid of those foundations to improve the quality of life in the state. Headquartered in Jasper, Indiana, German American currently has 37 offices in 13 counties and offers banking, insurance, investments, and trust products and services. Schroeder says it is important to support the community because of the company’s presence in the area. By serving other organizations, it will help German American grow and continue to give back.
Other organizations German American has served include United Way and the YMCA, as well as many others. John Lamb, the bank’s south region president, says they pay attention to what organizations their customers are involved with to see if there are additional donation opportunities. The Community Foundation Alliance provided the perfect partner.
“We live and work right here in Southern Indiana,” says Jane Balsmeyer, vice president and director of marketing at German American. “It was a really good fit for us because we are committed to helping community members now and in the future.”
For more information about German American, visit germanamerican.com. For more information about the Community Foundation Alliance, call 812-429-1191 or visit communityfoundationalliance.org.