Community Foundation for the Alleghenies is growing into new offices to match our growing impact.
CFA opened its doors 29 years ago with one $300,000 fund and a board made up of local business and civic leaders who understood the power of pooling resources to fund local philanthropy.
In the three decades since, we’ve grown from offering three types of funds to eight different types, plus managing accounts for four large supporting organizations.
We’ve grown from having one volunteer executive director to five full-time and six part-time employees.
We’ve grown from serving the Greater Johnstown area to serving all of Bedford, Cambria, Indiana, and Somerset counties.
We’ve grown from granting $14,250 in 1991 to awarding more than $7 million this past fiscal year in grants, charitable distributions, and scholarships.
We’ve grown because of our donors, who come to us with compassion for their community and a vision for investing in future generations.
We’ve grown because of the organizations doing incredible work with these resources, uplifting individuals through education, arts, human services, economic development, and much, much more.
While we’ve grown bigger, our mission has grown deeper: to be a destination for generous hearts, where goodwill and good deeds intersect and integrity meets inspiration.
Our move in early February takes us a few blocks from our current Johnstown office to 216 Franklin Street, better known as the AmeriServ Bank building.
We move forward with immense gratitude for Somerset Trust, which has provided our office space since 2004 — at no cost to CFA. Their provision for us is a community service for sure, providing a home base for philanthropy that benefits our entire four-county region.
In celebration of this progress, here’s a look back at some of our milestones:
1990: The Community Foundation of Greater Johnstown is founded by Darryl Myers, Terry Dunkle, Richard Mayer, Gary Horner, Dan Glosser, John Kriak, Dr. Frank Blackington, D.C. Nokes, Kim Craig, Bob Eyer, Dr. Donato Zucco, Tom Slater, Dr. Robert Swanson, James Saly, and Bob Allen. Richard Mayer is the first Board Chairman. Bob Allen serves as its first Executive Director as an unpaid volunteer. The Dan and Marcia Glosser Fund is established with $300,000 as the first fund.
1991: The Community Foundation makes its first grants totaling $14,250. David Kraybill is hired as Executive Director and Penn Traffic Company provides donated office space.
1992: Assets exceed $1 million for the first time. The Ben Franklin Fund is established. “I wish to be useful even after my death,” is a quote from Ben Franklin’s 1790 will, in which he left a legacy for Pennsylvania to be distributed 200 years after his death. The Foundation receives $30,000, an amount proportionate to its share of the state’s population. Distributions are used to support nonprofit initiatives.
1993: The Foundation is renamed the Community Foundation of Cambria and Somerset Counties.
1994: AmeriServ Financial provides larger space as a donation to the Foundation in order to meet growing staff needs.
1997: The Foundation receives a bequest from the Charlotte Ellis Estate in excess of $1.5 million.
1998: The Foundation surpasses $5 million in assets.
1999: The Foundation is renamed the Community Foundation for the Alleghenies and becomes active in Bedford County. Walter Bork leaves a bequest of $1 million in support of causes in Indiana County.
2000: CFA receives $6.8 million to establish the Penelec Sustainable Energy Fund. An additional $2.5 million is also subsequently received. Grantmaking exceeds $1 million for the first time.
2001: Dan Glosser is named Board Chairman and Mike Kane is named Executive Director. The Somerset County Community Fund is established with an anonymous match challenge to the Foundation of $100,000 that is met successfully by the people of Somerset County under the leadership of Ted Deskevich and others.
2002: The 100 Families Project starts with a goal of raising $1 million in new endowment. The project eventually raises in excess of $3 million.
2003: CFA surpasses $20 million in assets.
2004: Through the Penelec Sustainable Energy Fund (and its counterpart, the Metropolitan Edison SEF), the Foundation lends $2 million to Gamesa to establish a blade manufacturing plant in Ebensburg, creating nearly 249 jobs. The Foundation moves into office space donated by Somerset Trust Company.
2006: Mark Pasquerilla is named Board Chairman.
2007: Grantmaking for the first time exceeds $2 million. CFA surpasses $30 million in assets. The Foundation receives $4 million from Memorial Hospital of Bedford Foundation. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection establishes the $2.2 million Susquehanna River Basin Commission Fund to treat the Bakerton AMD discharge in northern Cambria County.
2008: Estate of board member Abe Beerman leaves the Foundation $5.9 million, its largest bequest to date. The Foundation opens an office in Bedford County in space donated by Mark Thomas at Penn Square Centre on South Juliana Street.
2009: The Foundation opens a Somerset County Community Funds office in space donated by William Kimmel Law Firm.
2010: Grantmaking exceeds $2.4 million, with 399 funds established. Foundation assets exceed $38 million.
2011: The $2.5 million Robert Waters Economic Development Fund is established. The Foundation provides a $250,000 loan to assist with the completion of Peoples Natural Gas Park. Somerset Trust Company and Highland Tank each provide $50,000 in challenge match funding to double the Somerset County Community Fund’s size to $500,000. The John P. Murtha Foundation supporting organization is established.
2012: The Foundation surpasses $50 million in assets and distributes $3.7 million in grants and scholarships. The Berkey Legacy Remainder Trust provides a $900,000 endowment for the arts in Somerset and Bedford counties. $2.5 million is received from GenOn in support of watershed restoration in the Conemaugh Basin. The FracTracker Alliance supporting organization is established.
2013: The Walter C. Allen Estate provides just under $2 million to support Bedford Memorial Hospital.
2015: The Foundation reaches $65 million in assets, over 550 funds, and distributes in excess of $4 million.
2016: CFA implements a five-year strategic plan, creating measurable goals toward increasing the impact of our donors.
2017: CFA funds support 360 nonprofits with $7.8 million in grants and other charitable distributions.
2018: The Foundation surpasses $70 million in assets.
2019: CFA starts the year with more than 700 funds, and move into our fourth official home at 216 Franklin Street in downtown Johnstown.