Berkshire Taconic Donor Stories - Give - Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation

Donor partnerships are at the heart of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation’s efforts to strengthen our communities. Our donors are a diverse group with varied interests, but they share an important goal: to make life here even better through their giving.

Explore some of their stories here. You can also read our blog for more stories of donor impact.


Ralph Fedele opened a legacy fund to ensure that the Irondale Schoolhouse—now enjoying a second life as Millerton’s new visitor center—receives ongoing support after his lifetime. Photo by John Dolan

Jane Lloyd Fund
Jane Lloyd Fund
Sky Blue Press
Sky Blue Press
photo by Sky Blue Press
About This Photo
About This Photo

The Winthrop Crane Fund for Graduate Student Aid and Zenas Crane Fund for Student Aid were established to help graduates of Wahconah Regional High School. John and Judy Kittredge (pictured) are members of the Crane family and have both served in leadership roles for Berkshire Taconic funds that support students and nonprofits in central Berkshire County. Photo by John Dolan. 

Sometimes giving can be practical and permanent. That combination describes a recent gift from Kinderhook, NY resident Bob Albern, who made a donation from his IRA to Berkshire Taconic’s Fund for Columbia County, which helps improve the quality of life there through grants to nonprofits.

Read Bob's Story

Sherrell Andrews and Rob Kuhbach have invested their time, talent and treasure in nonprofits that make a difference in their beloved hometown of Millerton and beyond.

Read Sherrell & Rob's story

Family means everything to Tom Auge. Driven by the lifelong lessons his parents taught him about giving, Tom established a legacy fund to bring a sense of strength to Pittsfield’s culture and community — especially the elderly.

Read Tom's Story

 Margery Barrett grew up in Adams, MA and was an integral part of the community she loved. She opened an Area Fund to support elder services, arts programs, after school activities and other community education programs.

Read Margery’s story

Now 87, Nick lived a “wonderful life as a team” with his late wife, Ruth—by working hard, seizing opportunities and benefiting from occasional runs of good luck. And like his mother taught him, he has given back to his community unreservedly.

Read Nick & Ruth's story

One of the many bonds uniting Herbert Burtis and John Ferris was their devotion to classical music - in fact the two devoted their lives to it. So when they decided to include philanthropy as part of their estate planning, it was only natural that they looked for a way to support talented young classical musicians. 

Read Herbert & John's Story

Part-time residents of Dutchess County for over three decades, Russ and Judy Carson generously support a range of interests through their family trust. We sat down with Russ to discuss how good luck, hard work and resolve have helped shape their ideas about giving.

Read Russ' Story

Gail and Tony Cashen use a BTCF donor advised fund to support their passions.

Read the Cashens' story

Star Childs and Betsy Gill, along with their two other siblings, Anne Childs and Ned Childs, are building on their family's long legacy of conservation and education. They are helping to secure the future of Great Mountain Forest, a nonprofit that manages 6,000 acres of permanently protected woodland in northern Litchfield County. 

Read Star & Betsy's Story

Wendy Curtis was in transition, and so was her adopted hometown of Millerton, NY.

Read Wendy's Story

When Tim and Patty Crane returned to their hilltop home of Windsor, Mass., after several years in Sweden, they detected that civic engagement was on the wane. They have helped the tiny town regain its sense of self by giving back to their community.

Read Tim & Patty's Story

Phil and Hilary Deely have been giving back in one form or another throughout their forty-year marriage. A passion for the Berkshires is in their DNA.

Read Phil & Hilary's Story

Residents of Columbia County, NY since 1969, Norma Edsall and Alice Corbin established a donor advised fund in 1997. They count education, conservation and preservation among their chief interests, and keep alive their families' long traditions of generosity with their giving. 

Read Norma & Alice's Story

A successful businessman whose family was among the first to settle in Pittsfield, Mass., Moe looks for ways to support his cherished institutions with steady annual income.

Read Moe's Story

A local legend known for her kind and eccentric nature, Dr. Josephine Evarts established the Tabor Foundation to help local students attend institutions of higher learning. 

Read Josephine's Story

To say the Fairbanks are without hubris is an understatement. Despite their reputation as environmental stewards and principled businessmen, Brian and Tyler are clear-eyed about why they do what they do.  "Enhancing people's lives: that's the mantra we live by," says Tyler.

Read Tyler & brian's Story

Ralph Fedele opened a legacy fund to ensure that the Irondale Schoolhouse—now enjoying a second life as Millerton’s new visitor center—receives ongoing support after his lifetime.

Read Ralph's story

Thanks to the generosity of two anonymous donors who believe that access to healthy food should be a right, not a privilege, numerous projects are underway in Columbia County to transform the county's food system—including the launch of the Rolling Grocer 19 mobile market.

Read their story

Richard Henriquez believed that world peace could be achieved only if young people understood and valued other cultures. 

Read Richard's Story

Bob and Dean Inglis's shared love of reading prompted them to take on leadership roles at Roeliff Jansen Community Library in Hillsdale, NY. In addition to a combined 50-plus years of volunteering, they help sustain children's programs with contributions through an endowed fund that will support the library forever.

Read Bob & DEAN's Story

Massage therapist Denise Kaley knew how to give comfort. A diagnosis of cancer made Denise even more determined to continue her work.

Read Denise’s story

Charlie Keil is passionate about putting his theory of music "Groovology" to work strengthening our young children's development. He started the Born to Groove Fund in 2012, which has brought music and drumming programs to every day care center in the Region One School District in NW CT.

Read Charlie's Story

A surprise gift from a beloved relative has allowed Francoise Kelz to expand her lifelong practice of helping other people. 

Read Francoise's Story

John and his wife Judy both served in leadership roles for Berkshire Taconic funds that support students and nonprofits in central Berkshire County. 

Read John & Judy's Story

The North Chatham Free Library stands for all the things the late Janet Langlois believed in: Education, literacy, culture, and a wider vantage point. Her legacy fund will support vital programming at the library in perpetuity.

Read Janet's story

When Jane Lloyd got sick, her community rallied around her. Her grateful family returned the kindness by creating the Jane Lloyd Fund.

Watch the video

Teacher and artist Rhoda Lubalin created the Rhoda Lubalin Art Scholarship in 1990 to encourage arts locally.

Read Rhoda’s story

Louise McCord never put herself first.

Read Louise's Story

The couple settled in Egremont, Mass., where Robin asked himself: "So what am I going to do for the town?" 

Read Robin & Buzz's Story

Judith McKernon helps ease the burden of medical costs for families in northwest Litchfield County through grants from the Blue Horizon Health Fund.

Read Judith's story

Jim and Donna Neureuther's elderly neighbor became a part of their family after years of kind gestures—bonding over meals, offering rides and maintaining her property. When she died, they chose to open a fund to honor her memory and help their community thrive.

Read Jim & Donna's story

Mrs. George W. Perkins Jr. is not the least bit interested in publicity. But Mrs. Perkins, known as Nancy, will proudly, at times ruefully, discuss her late husband's legacy and the pastoral life they chose together—raising children and cattle, attending church and supporting their town—on a remarkable piece of farmland in Millbrook, New York.

Read Nancy's Story

Antonio wanted to do something good with his assets, and so the Antonio and Antoinette Pieropan Scholarship was born to support residents of Stockbridge, Mass. who want to continue their education through the trades and services. 

Read Antonio's Story

Every potter needs a kiln, every professional musician a tuxedo. These are basic requirements of the job. But for many artists, the costs to start – and keep – making art can be prohibitive.

Martha Boschen Porter understood this in her bones. An artist and photographer herself, Martha settled with her husband in Salisbury, Conn., in 1959 and lived there until her death five years ago last month. She lived a long and creative life, pursuing twin passions of creating her own work and helping other creative people thrive. 

Read Martha's Story

Inspired by her time living in Africa and getting to know Burmese refugees and to honor her father's strong beliefs in justice and civil rights, Abby established the New World Fund for recent immigrants.

Read Abby's Story

There may not be another community in our region whose future prospects are so closely identified with one person. 

Read Jon's Story

Legally blind for more than half of her 50-year teaching career, Violet Simmons inspired her students to strive for excellence and preached that anything worth doing at all is worth doing well. 

Read Violet's Story

Though not a parent herself, Karen Smith has children everywhere. A dogged volunteer and philanthropist, she has spent 30 years raising money for everything from swimming lessons to food pantries to preschool programs in southern Berkshire County.

Read Karen's story

The Stuhlmanns bequeathed a large portion of their estate to their donor advised fund to benefit one of our most rural and beautiful areas. 

Read Barbara & Gunther's Story

A Berkshire County resident who started a sterile manufacturing company in 2014, Andrea Wagner is actively looking for ways to inspire young women to pursue careers in science.

Read andrea's Story

Nature. Companionship. Service. Inspiration came in many forms for the late Doris Walker.

Read DORIS's Story

Edith Wilson established a scholarship fund at Berkshire Taconic that helps Monterey youth with their college expenses.

Read Edith’s story

As BTCF marks its 30th anniversary, we salute the Blum family of Salisbury, Conn. Alice Yoakum—daughter of founder Robert E. Blum—reflects on our origins and the unique role of community foundations.

Read Alice's story