Gasconade County R-1 Schools Receive A Coover Regional Grant

CFO Board Treasurer Roger D. (Dusty) Shaw presents a Coover grant to Chris Neale along with CFO board member Karen Miller and Commerce Trust Vice President Jill Reynolds. (Photo courtesy of Community Foundation of the Ozarks)

--The Community Foundation of the Ozarks, in partnership with Commerce Trust Company, awarded $10,000 to Gasconade County R-1 Schools at the 2015 Coover Regional Grants ceremony in Springfield.

The funding will be used to partner with the Hermann Regional Economic Development Corporation to develop the "Live Hermann" campaign to market area job opportunities to young residents so they don't feel they have to leave Hermann to find post-graduate employment.

The "Live Hermann" campaign, which the HRED also intends to market in the St. Louis and Columbia areas, will include developing post-secondary training and internship opportunities to fit the needs of area employers.

"We would like to connect more closely the kids that we've been exporting with our local employers," Gasconade R-1 Superintendent Chris Neale said. "The 'Live Hermann' campaign is about reversing that export trend and importing more young people."

The Louis L. and Julia Dorothy Coover Regional Grantmaking Program awarded the grant at a ceremony on Feb. 26 at The Commerce Trust Company in Springfield.

The Gasconade County R-1 Schools grant was among 17 proposals selected for a total of $200,000 in awards from among $1.4 million in requests. The 2015 grant awards are being awarded to agencies working on poverty, senior issues, health, community development, and arts issues.

These grants are made possible through the generosity of the late Julia Dorothy Coover, who worked for Commerce Bank for 30 years. She established the Louis L. and Julia Dorothy Coover Charitable Foundation in 1992 to honor her husband's memory. With this year's awards, the Coover Charitable Foundation surpasses $4 million in grantmaking across the Ozarks since its founding.

"This is always one of our favorite days of the year," Commerce Trust Vice President Jill Reynolds said. "It is so rewarding to support the work being done by nonprofits in our rural areas. We are very proud that Mrs. Coover was a long-term Commerce employee and that she had such a generous heart and the passion to help citizens in southwest Missouri.”

The Community Foundation of the Ozarks has a network of 45 affiliate foundations, including the Hermann Area Community Foundation, Inc.