Ansonia Public Schools Scholarship Endowment Fund

for scholarships for Ansonia students

Want a reason to join a Rotary Club? Just ask Ansonia School Superintendent, Carol Merlone. One minute she was attending the weekly Rotary Club meeting in Ansonia, and the next she was coming away with a plan to consolidate and upgrade the Ansonia School System's scholarships - by creating the Ansonia Public Schools Scholarship Endowment Fund with the Valley Community Foundation.

That day, VCF President at the time, Jamie Cohen, was making a presentation to the Rotary group, when his remarks resonated with Mrs. Merlone. "He made me think of ways that VCF's investment successes might work for us by moving under their umbrella," she said. What happened next was a series of meetings with Ansonia's Business Manager, the Board of Education, and the Superintendent.

John Lawlor, the Ansonia Board of Ed Chairman, who did much of the negotiating, said, "Jamie was open and responsive during our due diligence process - he worked with the Board, alleviated our concerns, and explained the endowment concept to us. As a result of his efforts, and VCF's ability to preserve the scholarship funds entrusted to us over the years, the Board voted unanimously to engage VCF's investment management services."

The Fund was established to more effectively manage the scholarships that were all in individual passbook accounts.

"It was one thing when local banks were paying 5% on passbook savings. But with current rates less than one percent, we needed VCF's management and expertise to keep our Funds from being depleted down to zero," said Mrs. Merlone. "Their professional team will oversee the Fund, make our scholarships permanently self-funding, and add even greater value to the generous contributions of the original scholarship Donors."

The Ansonia Schools especially liked that VCF is a local, non-profit philanthropy, specializing in this type of activity. "VCF has a proven track record of local community involvement, and are offering their professional services at a minimum charge to our district," said Ansonia School Business Administrator James Gaskins. "This move will assure the long term stability of our Scholarship Funds."

Superintendent Merlone is pleased with the outcome thus far. "We now have a way to keep these scholarships going for the long term - they will not end or have their balances depleted," she said. "Our Scholarship Endowment Fund at VCF assures that we can invest in our students' futures for years to come."

To make a tax-deductible contribution to this fund, please complete the secure, online credit card form below: