Community foundation president to share why ‘Stewardship Matters’ during Afternoon Sabbatical Oct. 9

Afternoon Sabbatical: “Stewardship Matters: The Story of the Elkhart County Community Foundation,” with Dr. Peter McCown, president of the Elkhart County Community Foundation
Date and time: Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 1 p.m.
Location: Goshen College Music Center’s Sauder Concert Hall
Cost: Free and open to the public

Peter McCown.

What to do with a $150 million gift? The Elkhart County Community Foundation gladly took on this challenge when a former county resident Dave Gundlach left the foundation this large financial donation after he died last year.

Dr. Peter McCown, president of the Elkhart County Community Foundation, will share the story of Gundlach and the implications of his gift during a Goshen College Afternoon Sabbatical lecture on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 1 p.m. The presentation, titled “Stewardship Matters: The Story of the Elkhart County Community Foundation,” will take place in Goshen College Music Center’s Sauder Concert Hall and is free and open to the public.

Gundlach grew up in Elkhart. As an adult, he pursued life around the world, owning ten multi-million-dollar homes in places like Malibu, Calif., and Europe, said McCown. “Elkhart was still his home town,” said McCown. “When he died, he didn’t have any heirs, so this community became his heir.”

Now that the foundation has $150 million – triple the size of the foundation’s previous overall holdings – McCown said the task is to figure out how to best use the money. “What do you do when you’re given $150 million and the only direction for what to do with the money is to do good?” said McCown. “Do we create more scholarships? Start free preschools? Open new parks, theaters or community centers?” Whatever is decided, the money has the potential to historically transform the county.

The Elkhart County Community Foundation was established in 1989 by a group of community leaders with the goal of creating a community chest of endowments in order to improve the quality of life for citizens of Elkhart County. The foundation provides resources for such community organizations like The Post, Boys and Girls Clubs and the Lilly Endowment Scholarship Fund.

A reception in the Music Center lobby will follow the program. Afternoon Sabbatical programs are usually on the second Tuesday of the month at 1 p.m. in Sauder Concert Hall or the College Church Fellowship Hall and are free and open to the public. For more information on the Afternoon Sabbatical series call the Goshen College Welcome Center at (574) 535-7566.

Future programs in the Afternoon Sabbatical series include:

Tuesday, Nov. 13 at noon in the Church-Chapel Fellowship Hall
Celebrating Food and Family Luncheon, with Esther Rose Graber and daughters
Artist and author Esther Rose Graber will present with four of her daughters – Jane Graber Davis, Ellen Graber Kraybill, Sibyl Graber Gerig, and Ann Graber Miller – all GC grads and co-authors of the recently released cookbook The Daily Feast (Good Books, 2012). Accompanying the words and visuals will be a delectable Caribbean meal taken from the pages of their culinary work. Cost: $20. Call (574) 535-7565 to register before Nov. 3. $5 late fee.

Saturday, Nov. 17
Bus Trip to Chicago (sold out!) – Les Misérables
Based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel, Les Misérables is an epic and uplifting story about the survival of the human spirit. Cameron Mackintosh presents a 25th anniversary production with new staging and dazzlingly reimagined scenery inspired by Hugo’s paintings. This new production has been acclaimed by critics and fans and is breaking box office records wherever it goes. This trip is sold out.

Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 1 p.m. in Sauder Concert Hall, Music Center
Pre-Christmas Celebration with Family Duo David Machavariani, cello adjunct faculty at GC, and Ketevan Badridze, piano faculty at Indiana University South Bend
Join us for an early Christmas celebration with family duo originally from the Republic of Georgia. Our own Goshen College cello teacher and his wife Ketevan will share great music of German and Russian major composers, including sonatas by Richard Strauss and Dmitry Shostakovich.