Thank You for Supporting the Master Gardener Program

Thank You for Supporting the Master Gardener™ Program by Contributing to the OSU Master Gardener™ Program Endowment.

Endowed Balance that Generates Income to Support the Statewide Master Gardener Program (As of October 2019) = $248,000

This endowment was established by the Oregon Master Gardener Association in the 1980's, and has since been funded by thousands of grassroots donations, ranging from $10 to $10,000, from individual Master Gardener volunteers, family, and friends, as well as from the Oregon Master Gardener Association and its 22 chapters. The Oregon Master Gardener Association established the endowment, in collaboration Jan McNeilan and Ray McNeilan ~ both of whom previously served as the OSU Extension Statewide MG Program Coordinator. The fund currently generates about $10,000 per year (~4% interest on principle) that is or has been used to help fund:

  • the partial salary of the Statewide Master Gardener Program Assistant,
  • the partial salary of the Statewide Master Gardener Program Outreach Coordinator
  • bridge funding for Lane, Hood River, Union, and Marion County Master Gardener Programs, when they experienced funding shortfalls,
  • the Statewide Master Gardener Program Leader's travel to teach local Master Gardener classes in 27 counties across the state,
  • creation and maintenace of tools to support Master Gardener volunteerism, including the Volunteer Reporting System, Solve Pest Problems, and the soon-to-be released Plant Clinic Database (known as ECCo, for Extension Client Contact Database)

In addition to this endowment fund, the Master Gardener™ Program has been fortunate to be the recipient of several generous estate gifts. 

  • In 2012, Clackamas County Master Gardener™ Sherry Sheng, together with her husband Spike Wadsworth, made a $1.2 million estate pledge to fully endow the statewide Master Gardener™ coordinator's position.  The Y. Sherry Sheng and Spike Wadsworth Endowment Fund, a planned gift, will become available to the program through the Sheng and Wadsworth estates, upon their passing. 
  • In 2020, Clackamas County Master Gardener™ Sherry Sheng, together with her husband Spike Wadsworth, made a $503,000 annuity donation to start fund the Y. Sherry Sheng and Spike Wadsworth Master Gardener Professorship Fund. This gift is above and beyond the $1.2 million estate pledge made in 2012. The 2012 and 2020 gifts will combine (when Sherry and Spike pass away), for a $1.7+ million endowment that will fully fund what I suspect is the very first Endowed Master Gardener Professorship in the United States.
  • In 2012, Wasco County Master Gardener Barbara Bailey, together with her husband Bob Bailey, have made plans to establish an $600 thousand endowment to support the statewide Master Gardener™ Program. The Bob and Barbara Bailey Endowment Fund, a planned gift, will become available to the program through their estate, after their passing.
  • In 2012, the Master Gardener™ Program was the fortunate recipient of a $25,000 gift pledge (payable over 5 years) by the Clackamas County Master Gardener™ Association.  This gift pledge represents the first and only time that a Master Gardener™ Association stepped forward to make a long term pledge to the program. 

We are grateful for these generous donors, and for all of the supporters of the Master Gardener™ Program who volunteer their time and/or offer financial support to keep the program running in the face of diminishing state support.

What?

In 2004, the Oregon Master Gardener Association (OMGA), the OSU Extension Service, and the OSU College of Agricultural Sciences launched the OSU Master Gardener™ Program Endowment, a fundraising initiative to ensure that the OSU Master Gardener™ program will continue to grow and serve Oregonians across the state.

The Oregon Master Gardener Association and its chapters, individual Master Gardeners, and other program supporters have generously donated nearly $250,000 to the fund. The interest earnings from the endowment will provide on-going and sustainable program support for the statewide program, thus ensuring the continued success and impact of Oregon Master Gardeners™. 

Why?

OSU Master Gardeners™ are volunteers who serve as gardening educators in Oregon communities. They offer research-based horticultural information to citizens across the state. They conduct educational programs that address critical issues such as safe pest management practices, water quality protection, yard waste management and composting, and the welfare of youth, senior citizens and persons with disabilities. Your support of the OSU Master Gardener™ Program Endowment helps to ensure that these programs will continue to evolve and meet the needs of today's gardeners.

How?

You can contribute to the OSU Master Gardener™ Program Endowment by visiting the Oregon State University Foundation website:

  1. Print the giving form, and make sure to indicate 'Statewide Master Gardener Endowment Fund' in the 'Area of Support' section (check the 'other' box, and write in 'Statewide Master Gardener Endowment fund). Send the form and your tax-deductible contribution to OSU Foundation, 850 SW 35th Street, Corvallis, OR 97333-4015.
  2. Contribute on-line by visiting the OSU Foundation's secure website. There, you can sign up to make a monthly gift, or a one-time contribution.  Monthly contributions can be as little as $5.00 or $10.00 per month, and go a long way towards helping to support the Oregon Master Gardener™ Program. Once again, under 'Area of Support, please write in 'Statewide Master Gardener™ Program Endowment Fund' in the box that says 'Don't See Your Area of Support?'.

All contributions to the OSU Master Gardener™ Program Endowment are tax-deductible.

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