LAWRENCEBURG, IND., September 11, 2018 – A Dearborn Community Foundation, Inc., (DCF) scholarship that annually helps a non-traditional female college student was recently renamed in honor of one of the organization’s founders and sole attorney, Lisa deHart Lehner.
The scholarship formerly known as the Women Empowering Women Scholarship is now named the Lehner Women Empowering Women Scholarship. Lehner, DCF’s one-and-only attorney and a founder of the now 20-year-old charitable organization, recently announced her retirement from her legal practice to pursue other interests.
“When we learned Lisa was retiring from her law career, the board of directors and staff decided renaming the scholarship was an appropriate honor for Lisa for her service to the Foundation and our community,” said Fred McCarter, Executive Director of DCF. “Lisa, her mother, Diana Lehner, and her father, the late Charles Lehner, have all had a significant impact on the Foundation and particularly the Women Empowering Women program.”
Charles Lehner and Diana Lehner are members of the Foundation’s Legacy Society for their investment in our community through endowment. Charles was also the first individual to ever receive the Foundation’s Friend of the Foundation honor, a designation that was also bestowed upon Lisa Lehner for her role as a Founder of DCF.
One of the endowments established by Diana Lehner is the Women Empowering Women Fund. The endowment fund supports the Women Empowering Women program at the Foundation. The program is aimed at connecting women who care with causes that matter in our community. Women empowering women has awarded nearly $24,000 in grants and scholarships in 10 years.
“This is a great honor,” Lehner said of renaming of the scholarship in her family’s name. I have been so very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with so many giving volunteers, contributors and staff members over the years. It’s very gratifying to see how the Foundation grew into the charitable organization of record in Dearborn County.”
Lisa Lehner was honored recently at DCF’s 20th Anniversary Dinner and she was the keynote speaker at the event. She spoke about how the Foundation was established 20 years ago and how she and other founders are proud of how the Community Foundation concept is working so well in Dearborn County.
“For 20 years, most of my professional life, I have had an intimate connection with the Foundation,” Lehner said at the event. “Envisioning, creating, building and growing the Foundation has been a remarkable and rewarding adventure. It’s been a journey of discovering hidden opportunities, overcoming surprising obstacles and creatively solving problems through collaboration and pooling of resources.”
Lehner spoke of how she and other founders, like Mike Kramer and Richard Ullrich, had to educate themselves to understand the concept of a community foundation and then work with other volunteers to educate the community on the concept.
“So much has changed since those early days,” Lehner said. “We didn’t know exactly how this would turn out. We learned that Dearborn County residents are philanthropic. They give to charities they love. They create endowments out of love. The donations to scholarships, 4-H, EMS or endowments like the Lauren Hill Make A Difference Fund happen because a person has a passion or a strong emotional connection to a specific charitable cause.”
The Lehner Women Empowering Women Scholarship is designed to help a non-traditional female student who has not had the opportunity to attend college or to complete her post-secondary education started previously in life. The scholarship may be applied to tuition, books and required fees. Students can apply now for the Lehner Women Empowering Women Scholarship online by going to the DCF website: dearborncf.org. The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. Friday, October 19, 2018.
Anyone seeking more information about how to establish a scholarship fund can call the DCF office at (812) 539-4115.