BRILLION, Wis. – Robert and Patricia Endries of Brillion have turned business success into successful philanthropy. Their charitable foundation has awarded more than $8 million in its 30-year existence, $3 million of that since joining with Community Foundation in 2005.
The Robert & Patricia Endries Family Foundation concentrates its giving on the needs of the Brillion community, where Bob and Pat built their successful businesses Endries International Inc. and Professional Plating. After the sale in 2005 of the Endries International, a supplier of a broad range of fasteners, their family foundation became a supporting organization of the Community Foundation, retaining its grant-making authority and governance by its own board of directors, but turning investment and administrative duties to the larger foundation.
The benefits from what Bob and Pat Endries have given are widespread, according to Steve Klessig, co-owner and vice president of architecture and Engineering for Keller Inc. and a lifelong resident of the Brillion Area. “I do not know anyone in the Brillion area who has not been touched positively, in some way, by two people with the largest of hearts, strategic community purpose and the greatest of giving spirits,” Klessig said.
When asked about their philanthropy, Bob and Pat paraphrase the Gospel According to Luke: “To those who have been given much, much is expected.”
“We have had successful businesses. It’s our turn to give,” Bob Endries said.
Their giving has made a dramatic difference in Brillion and well beyond.
A $3.6 million gift made the Endries Performing Arts Center at Brillion High School possible. Their foundation also provided major support for the gymnasium at the Heart of the Valley YMCA in Kimberly and the performing arts center at Silver Lake College in Manitowoc.
In one major involvement outside of the Brillion area, Bob and Pat Endries and the Endries Family Foundation board used grant money and business contacts to accomplish construction of a new riding arena and offices for CHAPS Academy, a Shiocton-area nonprofit that uses interaction with horses for mental health therapy for young people, particularly suicidal girls.
Other causes that have gained their support through the years include the New Hope Center sheltered workshop in Chilton, Holy Family Catholic Church in Brillion, the assisted living facility Garrow Villa and Rawhide Boys Ranch in New London.
Bob and Pat Endries also have a personal charitable fund in the Brillion Area Family of Funds that awards grants to nonprofit organizations and operates under the umbrella of the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region.