A group of Oneonta community leaders has established a new foundation as an offshoot of a local social and benevolent organization.
Work is under way to establish the Sixth Ward Athletic Association Foundation as a nonprofit organization with the goal of supporting local charitable causes and student scholarships, according to a media release from the group.
An offshoot of the Sixth Ward Athletic Club, the foundation “was inspired by a tradition of supporting community causes personified by the long-standing generosity” of the club and the Sixth Ward neighborhood, the release said.
“For years, club members have been asking to expand its annual giving programs, with an eye towards making a more formal system,” Sixth Ward AC President Bob Thomas said in the release. Thomas is also a trustee on the foundation board.
Thomas said he contacted longtime club member Al Colone more than a year ago to take steps to set up the foundation. Club attorney Dick McVinney and adviser Tom Trelease, a business consultant, secured a Certificate of Incorporation through the state Department of State, formalized the foundation’s organizational by-laws and secured a 501(c)(3) tax designation from the Internal Revenue Service.
The Foundation Board Trustees are Rosanne Miller, Joseph Sperry, Robert Thomas, Kathy Gravelin, Mary Drago and Colone, all of Oneonta. Miller was elected secretary; Sperry, treasurer; and Colone, chairman. The board will meet monthly.
According to the release, the foundation will offer grants to community programs produced by local charitable groups, and student scholarships, with distinct application processes for each. A focus will be on activities connected with youth athletics and the promotion of sportsmanship, character-building and civics. The Sixth Ward Athletic Club is expected to be the foundation’s primary source of funds, the release said, but donations will also be sought from individuals, families and corporate donors.