Community Giving

Lewis T and Viola Ness Ausherman

Fund Name: Lewis T. and Viola Ness Ausherman Foundation Fund
Fund Established: June 19, 1997
Community Foundation(s): Willmar Area

Created in June 1997 with an initial gift of $400,000, the Lewis T. and Viola Ness Ausherman Foundation fund is a permanent endowed fund which benefits designated charities, primarily located in Willmar area.

Lewis, commonly know as "Doc," was a veterinarian in Willmar for many years. Vi was an elementary school teacher. After Lewis died, and having no children, Vi needed to make some important decisions as she looked at her estate plan. Like many people of her generation, she remembered the difficult years of the Great Depression. Through prudent investing over their lifetimes, Lewis and Vi built their investment portfolio. Vi lived comfortably but not ostentatiously. As she thought about the impact a substantial gift could have, creating a fund at the Willmar Community Foundation just seemed like "the right thing to do."

Five predesignated charities which were important to Lewis and Vi now receive annual distributions from the fund. If one of these charities ceases to exist or changes its mission in the future, the foundation will redirect the support to fulfill the original intent of the donors.

The Lewis T. and Viola Ness Ausherman Foundation Fund is a great example of how the Willmar Area Community Foundation is helping individuals achieve their philanthropic goals. Most importantly, this fund is a tribute to the lives of the Aushermans, ordinary folks who exemplify the character of the people of Central Minnesota.