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Crawford family’s generosity continues in Shawano

The Ruth and Pat Crawford Family Foundation was created by Pat and Ruth as a way for their charitable intentions and gifts to endure far beyond their natural lives. As time goes by, the people who knew Pat and Ruth Crawford will lessen, but the spirit of their generosity will continue to leave a lasting impression on the greater Shawano community. Roughly $2 million has been gifted to more than 40 organizations in Shawano and Menominee counties since the inception of their private foundation in 1996.

The family recently decided to collaborate with the Shawano Area Community Foundation (SACF) and move the Crawford Foundation assets to a donor advised fund, the Pat and Ruth Crawford Family Fund.

                       Pat and Ruth Crawford at the TimberPro plant

“With fewer of Pat and Ruth’s children living in the Shawano area full time, it was determined that SACF had a better pulse on the community needs and could more effectively distribute the charitable fund,” says daughter Katie Schuh, who leads the foundation for the family, which includes the Crawford’s eight children and their families.

SACF is a regional affiliate of the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, which will be supporting the grant cycles and administrative aspects of the donor advised fund. This will take that burden from the Crawford family, allowing them to enjoy the impact of their giving to support causes important to the family.

“My siblings and I are confident in our recent decision to dissolve our family’s private foundation and contribute the assets to my parents’ SACF donor advised fund,” Katie says. “By making this change, we will gain the assistance of the Community Foundation’s professional staff and their expert resources as we continue to impact and grow our support of nonprofits in the greater Shawano community. We are thankful our parents’ legacy of generosity will continue under the care and guidance of the Community Foundation for all future generations.”

A donor advised fund is an efficient way for the family to streamline their charitable giving and maximize impact.

Pat, who passed away in 2018 at the age of 92, was born in a logging camp in northern Wisconsin. His passion for the forestry industry continued his entire life as he founded the successful global forestry equipment companies, Timbco and TimberPro.

“Early in my father’s career, the Menominee Indian Tribe offered him a key opportunity to manage their forest,” Katie says. “He then moved to Shawano and eventually launched his companies there. He was always grateful to be able to work in an industry he loved and to give back to a community that welcomed him.

“His entire life was about giving to others, and he was known for his generosity,” she says.

The Shawano Area Community Foundation is one of five geographic affiliates we partner with in the Fox Valley. Our other partners include Brillion Area Family of Funds, Chilton Area Community Foundation, Clintonville Area Foundation  and Waupaca Area Community Foundation.

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