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Erin G. Connell Memorial Fund

Established 2019

Erin Connell was a compassionate and caring person whose life tragically ended at the age of 22.  She was a 2014 graduate of Saint Charles East High School, and she attended Aurora University, Western Illinois University and the University of Central Florida.  

 Erin loved horses – everything about them.  She began riding at age six and competed and placed in many shows both as an amateur and a professional rider.  She spent two years as an instructor in Kane County, teaching kids to ride, jump and compete at local shows.  More than one person has referred to Erin as a “horse whisperer.”  She also was a talented artist, completing numerous works in a variety of media. 

 She also loved helping people, especially those who couldn’t always help themselves.  She embraced making sure young people got the breaks they deserved and were treated fairly and with respect.  She always put the concerns of those around her before those of her own, and she was the pride and joy of her family. 

 This fund is dedicated to Erin’s memory.  Funds raised on her behalf will be distributed to those organizations that support causes important to Erin, primarily to horse-related causes, including their care and use for therapeutic purposes.  

 Separately, in order to provide a legacy for Erin and raise awareness for this fund and her interests, the Connell family will channel some of its philanthropic endeavors through this fund.  No outside money will be deployed for purposes other than horse-related causes, but the family does anticipate donating money from this fund to causes including: 

  • Social causes, including caring for neighbors who may be homeless, hungry, or mentally ill 
  • Educational institutions 

…you can always start small, even $25 can make a difference. Remember we can’t take our money with us. Even if it’s just your gift of time. Volunteer and get involved.

Cris Anderson

Cristina & Thomas S. Anderson Endowment Fund | Tom & Cris Anderson Colonial Advisory Fund

As a first-generation college student from a low-income family, I was worried about how I was going to pay for books and supplies. This scholarship will allow me to focus more on my studies instead of worrying about how to afford college. I am working to not only create opportunities for myself but to motivate future generations. Thank you so much for helping me along this journey!

Moises J.

Claude & Alice Allen Memorial Scholarship Recipient

Being a part of the Community Foundation scholarship committee is the highlight of my year. For many, a scholarship from the Community Foundation is the reason they are able to continue reaching for their dreams and changing the future of our world. I hope each recipient knows just how inspirational they are to those of us who are lucky enough to read their stories.

Jessica Breugelmans

Board Member & Scholarship Committee Member

A community foundation is a donor-driven organization that helps donors custom-design funds that reflect their charitable interests. Through the years, grants from these funds have made a significant impact on our local communities.

Sharon Stredde

President Emeritus

We chose the Community Foundation because of its reputation. It’s well known, established and we can trust them to do the job for us.

Dick Schindel

Richard and Susan Schindel Scholarship Funds

Thank you very much for supporting my college education for these four years. I will never be able to repay you for the opportunity that this scholarship has given to me.

Julia H.

[Renewing Scholarship Recipient] Graduate of Hinkley-Big Rock High School

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