Couple gives Ashlanders access to Ivy League

Couple gives Ashlanders access to Ivy League (Richard & Nancy Esbenshade Scholarship)

Richard D. Esbenshade graduated from Ashland High School in 1946 and attended Stanford University with the aid of a scholarship provided by the Pepsi Cola Company. After graduation, he spent two years in the United States Army during the Korean War. He then attended Harvard Law School on the GI Bill, receiving an LLB magna cum laude in 1956.

Nancy Esbenshade attended high school in Lima, Ohio and graduated from Northwestern University. She obtained a masters degree in psychiatric social work at Simmons School of Social Work in Boston.

They were married in 1958 and moved to Los Angeles, where they raised five children and where Richard practiced law for more than 50 years.

They created a scholarship to help graduating seniors of Ashland High School who have been accepted to and are attending one of the following institutions: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Columbia, Penn, Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Stanford, Northwestern or Williams.

Sons honor parents by creating scholarship

Sons honor parents by creating scholarship (William R. and Constance M. Dravenstott Family Scholarship)

Each of Bill and Connie Dravenstott’s four sons, Robert, Richard, John and Ronald, were valedictorians at Ashland High School, where they were also active in varsity sports, music and other activities on their paths to college, careers and families to come.

In appreciation of their parents’ single-minded dedication to family, academics and community – and in recognition of the significance the community of Ashland and Ashland High School have had on their lives – the Dravenstott brothers endowed a scholarship to help future generations of Ashlanders pursue their goals of higher education.

Nurse paves the way for nurses

Nurse paves the way for nurses (Dr. Carol J. Chrisman Nursing Scholarship)

Carol Chrisman grew up in Ashland County and had a great love for her community. She was very proud of her profession of nursing and ultimately became the Dean of the School of Nursing at Ashland University.

She was particularly interested in public/community health nursing, but also wanted to encourage Ashland County nurses and students to continue their education toward a baccalaureate, masters, or doctoral degree.

A scholarship created in memory of Chrisman helps local nurses and nursing students attend Ashland University to acquire any nursing degree available beyond the RN.

Couple’s frugality funds education for many

Couple’s frugality funds education for many (David and Carol Burns Scholarship)

After David and Carol Burns graduated from Ashland High School in 1948, David worked at F.E. Myers and Brothers Company for 44 years. Carol worked as an aide in special education at Taft and Edison Schools. They each walked to work every day.

David was known for his frugality and was a self-taught investor. At the time of his death in 2011, he had investments set aside to fund the college education of his six grandchildren.

Although neither attended college, they realized the importance of higher education. They instilled this value in their children – all five are college graduates; four with advanced degrees.

The David and Carol Burns Scholarship assists AHS students in furthering their further education.

Loudonville family remembers Air Force cadet with scholarship

Loudonville family remembers Air Force cadet with scholarship (Russell William Blakely Scholarship)

After graduating from Loudonville High School in 1943, Russell W. Blakely enlisted in the Air Force as an aviation cadet. During his training, he became interested in medicine and read many medical books.

But Blakely’s dream of becoming a doctor ended when he died in an Air Force plane crash in 1945. His family created a scholarship in his memory to enable other LHS graduates to achieve their goals in the medical field.

High school class celebrates decades of friendship

High school class celebrates decades of friendship (AHS Class of 1962 Scholarship)

The AHS Class of 1962 is blessed to be filled with people who have maintained lifelong friendships. Some of the bonds of friendship began in first grade classes at Pleasant Street, Arthur Street, Grant Street, Montgomery, Osborn, Taft, Edison, and Lincoln Street Schools, while others were formed later at Ashland High School.

In celebration of friendships made in the Ashland City Schools, the class voted at their 40th class reunion to fund a perpetual scholarship for an AHS student. Long after the last member of the class of 1962 has passed on, there will be a piece of the class spirit remaining and encouraging young students to move toward their life goals.

Husband shares wife’s culinary passion

Husband shares wife’s culinary passion (Sharon E. Anderson Culinary Arts Memorial Scholarship)

Though her Crohn’s disease kept her from pursuing a career in the culinary arts, Sharon E. Anderson was an avid cook all her life. She helped many family and friends by cooking, setting up, serving, and cleaning up many weddings, graduations, and anniversary celebrations. Every year at Christmas, people looked forward to her varied and generous cookie and candy trays.

Sharon passed away at 60 years old in 2018, after three years fighting rectal cancer. Mark Anderson established the Sharon E. Anderson Culinary Arts Memorial Scholarship to honor his late wife of 24 years.

The Scholarship benefits one culinary arts student from Mapleton High School (Sharon’s Alma Mater) and one culinary arts student from Ashland High School (Mark’s Alma Mater) each year.

Grassman Memorial Fund Benefits Hillsdale Baseball

Grassman Memorial Fund Benefits Hillsdale Baseball

Mark Grassman was a multi-sport athlete, excelling at golf, as well as being part of the 2001 Hillsdale High School basketball team with a perfect regular season record, that was inducted into the Ashland County Sports Hall of Fame in 2018. After his record-setting, award-winning career at HHS, he played slow-pitch softball.

When Mark died unexpectedly of a massive heart attack at age 36, an anonymous donor couple with close ties to the Hillsdale community offered to provide a $10,000 gift to establish a permanent endowment fund at ACCF in Mark’s memory.

The donors asked that Mark’s family be given discretion to determine where distributions from the fund should be granted. The family chose to use the fund to benefit the Hillsdale High School baseball program.

Ashland Implement endowment fund memorializes family business

Ashland Implement Endowment Fund Memorializes Family Business

For 52 years, Ashland Implement, Inc. served the Ashland County community in the farm equipment and lawn and garden equipment, parts and service business.

After the business was sold, the owners sought a way to memorialize the corporation’s existence and to thank the community for a half-century of support.

The owners— Tom McNaull, John Crone, Steve Crone and Dan McNaull— set up the “Ashland Implement – Crone & McNaull Fund” with the Ashland County Community Foundation to support the foundation’s Community Grants program.

Each year, distributions from the fund will be pooled with dollars from other ACCF donors and granted to charitable organizations to support special programs and projects.

John and Bonita McNaull and Eldon and Vera Crone, the founders of Ashland Implement, would have been proud.

Friends Group Aims to Make Brookside Golf Course Sustainable

Friends Group Aims to Make Brookside Golf Course Sustainable

Having met their short-term goal of keeping the golf course “in the green” for two years, Friends of Brookside Golf Course began looking to the future.

The group has established the George and Peggy Valentine Honorary Endowment Fund with Ashland County Community Foundation to honor the memory of the Valentines and provide operational support to benefit the course for years to come.

Brookside’s first golf pro, George Valentine started the Brookside Junior Golf Program and the Brookside Golf Course Courthouse League. George Valentine’s wife, Peggy, also was vital to the success of the golf course as a longtime secretary for the City of Ashland’s Parks and Recreation Department.

The new endowment fund was established with a gift of $10,000, which will generate $400 annually for Brookside. Members of the Friends group envision the fund growing significantly with the addition of one-time contributions and annual gifts from Brookside supporters.