The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Ontonagon Scholarship Foundation tops $1 million


May 8, 2019


Ontonagon — The Ontonagon Scholarship Foundation was established in 1984 to provide the opportunity for Ontonagon Area School District graduates to continue their education. An endowment fund was established to grant annual scholarships from the interest earnings of the endowment. Since 1984, the Foundation has awarded over $377,000 in scholarships to 629 Ontonagon Area School graduates.

Thursday, the Foundation board of directors learned the foundation has topped the one million dollar level, with $1,289,972 to assist students.

The board approved scholarships of $1,500 to all of the 19 members of the Class of 2019 who applied for the scholarships and will graduate May 24. One of those students will also receive a four-year grant and one student will get a two-year grant of the same amount. Students are able to claim their awards after successfully completing their first college year.

Meredith Strong, president of the Foundation and the daughter of the late Lou Gregory — who was one of the foundation founders — noted, “The dream continues today to grow through the donations of many alumni, friends, families, businesses, memorials and civic organizations.

Strong was reelected to her position as president as were the other officers: Tammy Lancioni, vice president; Marilyn Anderson, secretary; and Sue Preiss and William DuPont as co-treasurers.

Betsy Guilbault was added to the board of directors.

Two new named trusts were established during the year — including one in memory of the late Doug Filppula, a former teacher in the school district; and Hiawatha Communications Inc., the owners of the Ontonagon Telephone Company. Three trusts also became Gold Leaf Trusts this year, signifying a minimum cumulative donation of $20,000 to the OASF. Reaching that goal are Dan and Mary Ellen Chabot; as well as the trusts in memory of James Koski, and in memory of Ernie and Helen Toivonen. These trusts have all been added as leaves on the OASF Giving Tree located in the Ontonagon High School Gymnasium lobby. Strong said donations made to the foundation prior to May 17 will be acknowledged in the commencement folder at the springs graduation ceremony. Donations can be made at either the Citizens State Bank or Miners State Bank.

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