Geneseo Education Foundation celebrates $4 million in distributions

The Geneseo Education Foundation (GEF) hosted an open house on Thursday evening to celebrate its distribution of $4 million to Geneseo’s schools since 1990.

A tax-exempt, non-profit corporation, the GEF “raises funds used to complement, enrich, and enhance the educational opportunity of students” in the Geneseo school district. It is managed by a Board of Directors that consists of dedicated school district residents and a representative from Geneseo’s Board of Education.

Sharon Neumann serves as the GEF’s Executive Director, while its board includes Leslie Raya (President), Chris Kuster (Vice President), Cheryl Radicic (Secretary), Roger Eickman (Treasurer), Joy Dwyer, Curt Ford, Bryn Miller, Bethany Winkleman, Blake Wyffels, Erin Knackstedt, Avery Mickley and Karen Urick (Board of Education).

Superintendent Dr. Adam Brumbaugh, who presented Raya with a Maple Leaf Medallion, shared his thoughts on behalf of the school district about the impact the Geneseo Education Foundation has had over the years.

“A big reason we’re so fortunate to offer our students one of the best educations in Illinois is our staff,” said Brumbaugh. “We’ve got outstanding teachers and leaders in every one of our buildings. But it’s an organization like the Geneseo Education Foundation that really puts our district over the top.”

Brumbaugh noted that since taking over as superintendent in 2018, the GEF has provided Geneseo schools district with over $1.25 million in funding.

“Think about those numbers for a moment, and consider how many lives have been impacted through this generosity,” said Brumbaugh. “The list of exactly how they’ve impacted our schools is long. Recent innovative grants have provided our classrooms with 3-D printers and drones, new equipment for the GFAC and science labs, and a variety of musical instruments.

“These are not just funds for teachers, coaches and instructors to create a better learning experience–they are an investment in the future of our community,” Brumbaugh continued. “We appreciate our teachers, and the resources provided by the GEF are one more way we can show them that they have our full support in being the best educators they can be.”

Brumbaugh also pointed out that the GEF has worked with other groups to further its impact, such as the Sherrard Foundation, which enabled the school district to get its instructional coaching program off the ground, build Geneseo High School’s Career and Technical Education Center, and rebuild the previous vocational spaces.

“Together, we’ve made a lot of progress,” stated Brumbaugh. “With help from the GEF, we’ve made a lot of real changes and improvements that will put our community’s young people in a position to achieve success after they leave our buildings.

“Our job as educators, however, is never done,” Brumbaugh added. “There is always more work to do. And with a community like ours–and an organization like the Geneseo Education Foundation–I have no doubt we’ll continue to come through for our students.”

Learn more about the Geneseo Education Foundation by visiting or following GEF on Facebook.

Photos courtesy of Curt Ford and Sharon Neumann