2021 Autumn Social Highlights

This year we held our 2021 Autumn Social event on September 27th.  Each year at this event, the Board of Trustees gives special recognition to a leader or leaders who have made a significant impact at the Eau Claire Community Foundation. This year, we recognized Dan and Debbie Market, whose commitment and support have been invaluable to the Eau Claire Community Foundation. They will join the previous Leadership Award recipients whose outstanding work has made our foundation what it is today.

Dan Market served on ECCF’s Board of Trustees from 2007-2012, and he also served as Chair of ECCF’s Investment Committee during that time. The Markets hold a family fund at ECCF that supports a variety of worthy nonprofits and is one of the Founding Partners of the Eau Claire Public Schools Foundation. In addition, the M&J Employee Impact Fund, established by Market & Johnson, Inc. encourages community philanthropy by involving employees in funding grants and selecting their recipients.

Dan and Debbie Market with their 2021 Foundation Leadership Award

Other highlights from the night included:

Laura Talley was recognized for her service to the Foundation as Board of Trustees Chair from 2017-2019. Laura has been an invaluable asset to ECCF, both as Board Chair and as a member of the Personnel, Nominations, Investment, Audit Committees and is a Women’s Giving Circle member. She and her husband Don also established the Talley Family Fund to support local nonprofits. Laura was presented with a plaque for her service, which will be displayed at the Foundation office.

A speech from Mike Johnson, Superintendent for the Eau Claire Area School District and Sarah French, Executive Director of the Eau Claire Public Schools Foundation:

Mike Johnson explaining the Eau Claire Area School Districts partnership with the the Eau Claire Public Schools Foundation.
Sarah French describing the Eau Claire Public School Foundations partnership with the Community Foundation.

A speech from Heather Johnson Schmitz from Royal Credit Union:

Heather Johnson Schmitz educates the audience about Royal Credit Union's new fund, which will provide professional development training throughout Eau Claire.


As a thank you for their service, outgoing Board of Trustee members were given the opportunity to present a local nonprofit of their choice with one grant of $1000, or two grants of $500. Below are the grant recipients with the Board of Trustee member that selected them, as well as a quote about why the nonprofit they chose is meaningful to them. 

Dr. Phil Happe presented Jeni Brantner from Family Promise of the Chippewa Valley (L) and Roberto Partarrieu from Catholic Charities Sojourner House (R) each with $500 .

"Homelessness is a nationwide problem, and Jan and I recognize that it exists in Eau Claire, having worked and volunteered at Beacon House Family Refuge. We feel it’s very important that we help to remedy and contribute what we can to this homeless problem that confronts us. We know that what we give is relatively minor in the grand scheme of things, but we think it’s very important that our community is cognizant of the homeless situation that we have in Eau Claire" -- Phil Happe







Laura Talley presented $1000 to Ann Kaiser from the Boys & Girls Club of the Greater Chippewa Valley.

“I chose the BGC because they meet our youth where they are and provide support academically, work on character and skill building, create opportunities and provide a safe and accepting environment. The Boys and Girls Club is an organization that uses funds wisely and partners with many other organizations for the greater good.” -- Laura Talley







Tom Toy presented $1000 to Amy Quella from Bob's House for Dogs.

It is Katie’s [Zimmerman] and my wish to donate this $1,000 Grant to Bob’s House for
Dogs in memory of our Great Dane, Rayden. At only nineteen months of age, we lost
our beautiful Rayden to complications of a surgery. Rayden was our buddy, our pal,
and our constant companion. He brought joy, happiness, and kindness into our
lives. In memory of our Rayden, it is our hope this donation will bring that same joy,
happiness, and kindness into another dog’s life.” -- Tom Toy




Congratulations to the grant recipients, and thank you to all the donors and volunteers, especially Amelia Daniels who helped coordinate with Sweet Driver chocolates for our sweet treats for the evening! You all helped make the Autumn Social a success!

A special thank you to our sponsors for the event: 

Premier Sponsor:

Graystone Consulting

Room Sponsor:

Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse

Board Sponsors:

Amelia and Dr. Richards Daniels

Dr. Jason & Jennifer Beckermann

Cody Filipczak

Cindy Hangartner

Sarah Stokes Herzog and Chris Herzog

Jeff and Sue Ellen Kowieski

Tim & Denise Pabich

Jackie and Kenneth Rasmussen

John and Tami Satre

Dr. Julia Kyle