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Happy 25th, Community Memorial Foundation


Last updated 1/22/2020 at 4:36pm | View PDF

In 1995 La Grange Memorial Hospital was sold and part of the proceeds were used to create Community Memorial Foundation.

Who could have imagined the work the foundation would do?

The foundation, which has issued more than $77 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in 27 communities, will kick off its 25th anniversary celebration tomorrow.

The theme — turning Silver into Gold — reflects the foundation’s approach to working with local nonprofits. CMF works to leverage the funds it has available to provide even more financial support to its grantee partners. But it doesn’t stop there. It offers a variety of programs to help nonprofit agencies build their own capacity by offering executive coaching, a leadership program for mid-level employees, an organizational assessment, support with fundraising and other tools.

The foundation’s vision is bold — to work with the community to make this the healthiest region in the country. And CMF doesn’t limit its focus to physical health. Mental health has been an important component of its work, as evidenced by the opening of two Living Room locations (La Grange and Broadview) to offer mental health support as an alternative to an emergency room visit. CMF also has offered Mental Health First Aid training to more than 4,300 individuals.

CMF has provided significant support to four Hinsdale nonprofits: The Community House, HCS Family Services, the Robert Crown Center for Health Education and Wellness House, funneling $285,000 to these agencies in the last three years alone.

Other beneficiaries of the foundation’s support include those who are homeless, hungry, veterans, intellectually or development disabled and victims of domestic violence.

We’ve had the pleasure of working with the foundation on two of our coverage initiatives — the Mental Health Task Force in 2016-18 and the current Healthy Aging Task Force. Like so many of its grantee partners, we are grateful for the foundation’s generosity and leadership and genuine desire to work collaboratively to benefit people who are struggling.

Hinsdaleans who are familiar with CMF and its leader, Greg DiDomenico, won’t be surprised to learn the foundation plans to celebrate its 25th year by celebrating the strength and resilience of its grantee partners. Foundation leaders will share the details of the plan at a special lunch tomorrow.

We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate DiDomenico, staff members (Lisa Derezinski, Nanette Silva, Tom Fuechtmann, Gale Christoff and Beth Murin) and board members (Mike Bruni, Susan Christoph, Rick Shanley, Neil James, Sylvia Adrete, Brad Bloom, Dr. Bonny Chen, Gustavo Espinosa, Kris Lonsway, the Honorable Mark Lopes, Dr. Keith Suchy and Keith Watson) on this milestone anniversary.

We can’t wait to see what the next 25 years for the foundation holds.


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