Community Giving Foundation Announces New President/CEO
The Community Giving Foundation Board of Directors is pleased to announce Kara G. Seesholtz as the Foundation’s third President and CEO, effective October 1, 2022. Current President and CEO, Holly Morrison, announced her retirement in February but will stay on through December to facilitate a smooth transition.
Seesholtz has a long and fruitful relationship with the Foundation. She started in 2004, and has held various positions in grantmaking, communication, and development over her 18 years here. She has served in her current role of Chief Advancement Officer since 2018, where she has proven herself as a passionate visionary and respected community leader. Dedicated to the Foundation’s mission and the trusted relationships she has built with each of the stakeholders she serves on a daily basis, Seesholtz brings a renewed energy of unity and innovation to the partnerships that continue to grow across the region.
“As we began the process of finding our next President and CEO, the Governance Committee knew it would be critical to find a leader who would be able to carry on the mission of this wonderful organization. Our search process led us to Kara, who has dedicated the majority of her career to building relationships and growing the Foundation. Kara has a demonstrated track record of living the values of the Foundation. Through her work, Kara has established a high level of trust in the community and has a strong desire to continue the legacy of those that came before her. Her personality, work ethic, and experience made her the Board’s unanimous choice,” said John Kurelja, Community Giving Foundation Board Vice-Chair and Head of the Search Committee.
Seesholtz is a native to the area, reflected in her commitment to the advancement of the community and well-being of those who call it home. She is a proud alumna of Bloomsburg University, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies. She resides in Mifflinville with her husband, Kirk, where they raised their two sons, Ky and Koy.
Prior to her many roles at the Foundation, Seesholtz worked in communication roles with Geisinger Health Plan and the Berwick Area Chamber of Commerce. She has partnered with many community organizations and boards during her time at the Foundation. Seesholtz is currently a member of the Foundation of the Columbia Montour Chamber of Commerce Board, Leadership Susquehanna Valley Board, Central Columbia Educational Foundation Board, SUSQ-Cyber Charter School Improvement Plan Steering Committee, Greater Susquehanna Valley United Way Regional Equity Committee, and Columbia-Montour Council Boy Scouts of America Nomination Committee.
“Through my years at the Foundation, I have enjoyed building and stewarding positive relationships with donors, grantees, agency leaders, staff, boards, committees, and community members across the region. These relationships and our staff’s investment in our mission have been crucial to cultivating the values that set us apart. I look forward to using my belief in personalized philanthropy and community giving to guide the Foundation’s growth and success in our region,” said Seesholtz.
Over the next six months, Seesholtz and Morrison will work closely together to ensure the transition be transparent and seamless for the entire Foundation family. In partnership with the Board of Directors and Foundation staff, they look forward to opportunities for conversation and relationship-building at one of the many Foundation events planned for this year. For the complete event calendar, visit csgiving.org/events.
The Community Giving Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization that develops, manages, and distributes funds for charitable purposes in communities across the Central Susquehanna region. Serving as the region’s philanthropic hub for charitable giving, the Foundation currently houses more than 320 funds and serves five geographic affiliate foundations in Berwick, Bloomsburg, Danville, Selinsgrove, and Sunbury. Its regional footprint includes all towns and cities in the Columbia, Lower-Luzerne, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, and Union Counties.
McKonly & Asbury Announces New Affiliate Company: M&L Compliance Management
McKonly & Asbury is excited to announce that M&L Compliance Management, LLC (MLCM) is becoming part of McKonly & Asbury, LLP (M&A) effective April 1, 2022.
MLCM was founded as a full-service housing compliance and management consulting firm that specializes in the Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), Federal HOME, Section 8 and Rural Housing 515 Programs. McKonly & Asbury was founded in 1973 and began serving affordable housing developers in 1977. Affordable housing services remains a cornerstone for our firm, with deep, specialized experience in financial statement audits, tax return preparation, 10% and 50% tests, development cost certifications and other LIHTC-specific issues.
“The service offerings and compliance insights MLCM provides are a natural extension of our firm’s current affordable housing services,” said McKonly & Asbury’s Managing Partner, Michael Hoffner. “The fact that MLCM approached McKonly & Asbury is a testament to our understanding of the LIHTC market and our service model. Our organizations have a shared passion for serving clients in this sector. We are looking forward to the contributions and industry knowledge the MLCM team will bring.”
MLCM past President and CEO, Michael Kearny echoes this sentiment. “We sought out McKonly & Asbury based on the firm’s understanding of the low-income housing tax credit market and their commitment to client service, as well as our belief that MLCM employees would continue to thrive professionally and personally there. After meeting with them and exploring a potential partnership, we came away certain that M&A would meet both of those objectives.”
Spring Edition of the Digital Quarterly Magazine from the Columbia Montour Visitors Bureau has Arrived
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Bloomsburg University Earns Guard Friendly Recognition
The PNGAS Guard Friendly School designation is designed to help optimize taxpayer dollars, increase the positive impacts of the EAP/MFEP program for Guard recruitment and retention, promote and champion best practices of the schools that meet and exceed the ten Guard-Friendly standards adopted by PNGAS.
“This recognition demonstrates our university’s commitment to supporting and celebrating our students who proudly defend our nation,” said BU President Bashar Hanna. “As a university community, we strive to serve our military students in exemplary ways because they deserve nothing less than our very best.”
Since its inception, Pennsylvania has distributed almost $300 Million through the Education Assistance Program (“EAP”), the number one recruiting tool for the Pennsylvania National Guard. The EAP provides a tuition benefit equivalent to the yearly tuition rate set by the State System of Higher Education Schools. The Pennsylvania National Guard members can use EAP funds at one of the 488-PHEAA approved schools. With the July 2019 enactment of the Military Family Education Program (MFEP), there is a new non-lapsing Fund providing EAP-like tuition benefits to spouses and children of members of the Pennsylvania National Guard when a Guard member re-enlists for another 6-year term.
This year, EAP and MFEP tuition benefits will exceed $64,000 per Guard member, and state budget funds for these programs will exceed $30 million in tuition benefits.
Developed by the PNGAS Education Advisory Council, the PNGAS Guard-Friendly School standards were designed to recognize colleges, universities, and trade schools that meet or exceed ten (10) baseline criteria that create a supportive learning environment to assist members of the Pennsylvania Guard pursuing post-secondary degrees.
Bloomsburg University is the educational destination for over 300 military students and has been growing steadily in recent years. BU is different from many other colleges and universities in its unique appreciation that military students have different needs and attributes than non-military students.
The centerpiece of those efforts is the Office of Military and Veterans Resources. The Military Office works for current and former military members, spouses and dependents, and ROTC cadets. They have also developed strong relationships with area military recruiters to facilitate conversations for people interested in joining the military.
PNGAS is a non-profit organization not associated with or legally connected to the Pennsylvania National Guard, the state or federal government, the US Military, or the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.