Community Fund surpasses $54 million in giving

06.16.2011 Ron Karten Spirit Mountain Community Fund

Smoke Signals

Spirit Mountain Community Fund, the philanthropic arm of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, leapfrogged over the $54 million mark in giving on Wednesday, June 15, as it awarded $658,637 to 36 charitable organizations in an 11-county area.

Community Fund Programs Coordinator Louis King announced during the event held in the Tribal gym that the Community Fund has now given away $54,272,000 since it was formed in 1997.

Tribal Council Vice Chair Reyn Leno, who also serves on the Community Fund Board of Trustees, said it was something to be very proud of.

"We had absolutely nothing here," Leno told organization representatives who attended the quarterly check presentation. "But we're not just the casino. We are the Tribe first and always will be. We appreciate this opportunity to have people understand who we are."

"If not for the support of Tribal Council," said Portland businessman Sho Dozono, who also serves on the Community Fund Board of Trustees, "we would not have the money we've been distributing for the last 14 years."

Spirit Mountain Community Fund distributes 6 percent of Spirit Mountain Casino profits four times a year to charitable organizations.

This quarter's grants will support dental care for low-income Oregonians, playwriting workshops, creating a safe space for abused women and a Native American Cultural Center and programming at Oregon State University, among other worthwhile efforts.

Leno and Dozono were accompanied at the event by Tribal Council member Steve Bobb Sr., who also serves on the Board of Trustees, and casino Facilities Director and Tribal member Ron Reibach, who was appointed to the Community Fund Board of Trustees on June 8.

After drumming by the Grand Ronde drum group, Bobb gave the invocation and Leno and Dozono delivered welcome speeches. Then organization representatives watched the Tribe's 25th Restoration video, created by the Public Affairs Department, to learn more about Tribal history.

After the video, King read the list of grant recipients, who then posed with Dozono and Reibach for photos taken by Tribal photographer Michelle Alaimo.

Recipients on June 15 were:

  • Basic Rights Oregon Fund, $25,000;
  • Broadarts Theatre Inc., $3,000.
  • Clackamas Service Center Inc., $2,000;
  • Corvallis Art Center, $15,000;
  • Council  for Responsible Sport Inc., $5,000;
  • Dental Foundation of Oregon, $25,000;
  • Financial Stewardship Resources Inc., $10,000
  • Friendly House Inc., $30,000;
  • Japanese Ancestral Society of Portland, $49,813;
  • Kukatonon, $5,000;
  • Lane Coalition for Healthy Active Youth, $21,210;
  • Marion-Polk Food Share, $5,000;
  • McMinnville School District, $30,000;
  • Medical Teams International, $25,000;
  • Mercy Enterprise Corp., $15,000;
  • Neighbors for a Livable West Linn, $3,950;
  • Old Library Studio, $5,000
  • Oregon Child Development Coalition, $26,414;
  • Oregon State University Foundation, $50,000;
  • Partners for a Hunger Free Oregon, $$25,000;
  • Playwrite, $3,000;
  • Portland Woman's Crisis Line, $15,000
  • Qigong Sensory Training Institute, $15,000;
  • Quilts From Caring Hands, $2,000;
  • ROSE Community Development, $38,985;
  • Salem Multi Institute, $15,000;
  • Sisters of the Road Café, $20,000;
  • Ten Rivers Food Web, $5,000;
  • Northwest Coalition for Alternatives to Pesticides, $18,265;
  • Oregon Zoo Foundation, $20,000;
  • Tucker-Maxon Oral School, $20,000;
  • Volunteer Caregivers, $5,000;
  • Wild Salmon Center, $20,000;
  • Willamette University, $15,000;
  • Willamette Valley Hospice, $50,000;
  • Wisdom of the Elders Inc., $20,000.