Former members of the Janet Wattles Foundation board were honored Thursday, Jan. 12, 2012, at a gathering at the University Club of Rockford. Pictured, from left: Janet Beger, Rodney Link, Gwyn Gulley, Jeff Nielsen, Jean Beranek, Patricia Black, David Hagney and Richard Berman. Not pictured are Thomas Dudgeon, George Picha and financial adviser David Klintworth.
Janet Wattles Foundation has combined with Rosecrance Foundation
ROCKFORD – The Rosecrance Foundation honored 11 members of the former Janet Wattles Foundation Board and celebrated creation of a new endowment fund earmarked for mental health services during an event Thursday at the University Club.
For decades, the Janet Wattles Foundation (JWF) has raised funds through annual events and donations to support community mental health programs.
Rosecrance assumed management and operation of mental health services on Sept. 1, 2011, when Janet Wattles Center formally merged into Rosecrance.
Now, the organizations’ fundraising arms, the charitable foundations, have combined under the auspices of The Rosecrance Foundation. The JWF Board decided that it made sense to transfer assets to The Rosecrance Foundation, effective Dec. 14, 2011, said Jean Beranek, JWF Board president.
The new Mental Health Fund is part of The Rosecrance Foundation Endowment. The agreement between foundations allowed the transfer of more than $600,000 into the new endowment. As part of the merger, JWF transferred ownership of the foundation’s building on East State Street to The Rosecrance Foundation. Proceeds from the eventual sale of the house also will go into the Mental Health Fund.
Beranek said her board members’ first concern was ensuring the integrity of donations and estate gifts that were entrusted to JWF through the years to serve people with mental illness.
“We were given assurances by The Rosecrance Foundation that the money will remain committed to mental health, and that is the most important thing,” Beranek said. “People can still donate and designate the gifts to mental health and feel sure that the money will go for that purpose.”
John Griffin, chairman of The Rosecrance Foundation, said that in addition to the dedicated endowment fund, the foundation is committed to raising new funds to support local mental health services. He agreed with Beranek that it’s essential to honor donors’ wishes for their gifts.
“This new fund keeps the faith with people who have given so generously to improve the lives of a very vulnerable population,” Griffin said. “The Rosecrance Foundation Board is honored to be able to ensure the integrity of these gifts and to make sure that this endowment is used to do the most good for the most people.”
Griffin thanked JWF board members for their efforts on behalf of people with mental illness in the community.
“Their dedication to this cause has created a permanent legacy to benefit individuals and our community, as a whole,” he said.
These members of the JWF Board were honored at the event: Janet Beger, Jean Beranek, Richard Berman, Patricia Black, Thomas Dudgeon, Gwyn Gulley, David Hagney, Rodney Link, Jeff Nielsen, George Picha and David Klintworth.
Director of Communications
Rosecrance Health Network
1021 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61107
815.387.5605 (office); 815.262.4685 (cell)
jemerson (at) rosecrance.org
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for more than 14,000 children, adolescents, adults and families each year. Rosecrance provides addiction treatment through inpatient and outpatient programs in Rockford, IL, and services at six satellite offices in Chicagoland. In addition, Rosecrance offers community mental health services in Rockford and Belvidere. The organization was founded in 1916.