Leadership Notes

Iowa West Foundation hits $300 million mark

May 07, 2013

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By Pete Tulipana

At not quite 20 years old, the Iowa West Foundation’s grant program has recently passed an incredible milestone: $300 million in grant awards. Those funds, leveraged with matching dollars, represent $600 million invested in our communities throughout the region.  It is truly astounding to think about the impact on the quality of life of our region and the children and families who reside here. We celebrate this milestone with the Iowa West Racing Association, which receives contracted fees from casino operators Ameristar and Harrah’s.

The grants awarded for the first quarter of 2013 took us over the $300 million mark and are a great example of the scope of work the Iowa West Foundation supports: community development, education, economic development and human and social needs.  This quarter alone, $3.8 million in grants were awarded, including:

  • $2,500 to a public library in the City of Griswold;
  • $1 million to the University of Nebraska Foundation for The UNMC’s Cancer Center for cancer education programs;
  • $275,000 to fund the Heartland Family Service Iowa Family Works residential substance abuse treatment for women with children;
  • $50,000 to the Visiting Nurse Association of Pottawattamie County “Shelter Nursing Program” for local homeless; and
  • $33,500 to Community Education Foundation Inc., for improved educational opportunities in Council Bluffs classrooms.

Each of these grants exemplify how we’re working together to make our community a better place to live, work and play.

How have we done over the years? Do you think we have achieved a balanced approach in our grant making? Is there something you think is very important for us to know?   As we work on our next $300 million, we are seeking input from the community. Our Board will meet later this summer to finalize a new plan which will guide our future focus and investments.   

The Board of Directors of the Foundation is creating listening opportunities in the community to hear what you think.  These areas of focus are key to our Board’s decision-making strategies and the long-term impact of our grants. Thank you for participating in these opportunities.

I encourage you to stay in touch. Visit our website where you can share your thoughts in several different ways.  We will be asking quick poll questions at the bottom of our home page, or let us know how we’re doing on our community discussion. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. We look forward to hearing from you.


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Pete Tulipana, President, and CEO

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Iowa West Foundation    |    25 Main Place, Suite 550    |    Council Bluffs, Iowa    |    712-309-3000