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Our History

In 1998, The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County began its mission to provide the local community with an enduring form of local support. However, the inspiration and first steps towards the organization began years earlier, with a group of like-minded individuals, looking to create a positive change in the County. By blending their ideas together, they established the blueprint for an organization that would prosper by helping others prosper. With that concept, The Community Foundation was born.

In 1994, a group of community leaders from the Foundation for Community Design (FCD) met with The James Irvine Foundation to discuss the possibility of starting a community foundation in San Luis Obispo County. After successfully securing a $150,000 grant from the Irvine Foundation, a steering committee consisting of Dee Lacey, Maria Singleton and Warren Sinsheimer was appointed to begin the development and organization of the San Luis Obispo County Community Foundation.

The first Board of Directors was seated on September 28, 1998, and included a diverse group of leaders from all parts of the county.

In 2013, the Foundation changed its name to The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County to put the community first and emphasize our role as a resource for philanthropy in SLO County. Today, the mission and vision of The Community Foundation continues on as strong as ever, with a group of community leaders from throughout the county serving on the Foundation's Board of Directors to help sustain the legacy of our Founders and provide direction for our future.

Past Board Presidents

Jane Sinton, 1998-2000
Dean Miller, 2001-2002
Julian Crocker, 2003-2004
Lyn Baker, 2005-2006
John Dunn, 2007-2008
Wendy Brown, 2009-2010
Dee Lacey, 2011-2012
Ann Robinson, 2013-2014
Steve McCarty 2015-2016
Mary Verdin 2017-2018

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