In 1996 I was invited to chair Derbyshire Community Foundation. At that point, it did not cover the whole of Derbyshire and had £50,000 of resources.
I said I would accept when it covered the entirety of Derbyshire. “That is happening next month” was the immediate reply! The team worked hard to raise funds but by 2000 growth beyond £1M seemed to stall. Then with £1M of matched funding arranged the team managed to rekindle growth and raised a further £1M which with matched funding, took the total resources to £3M in 2005. I felt this was the level at which it would not go away, especially as our research into applications was becoming increasingly appreciated.
Michael Hall then took my place as Chair, and I became President. After a long spell of continued growth, Michael took a well-deserved rest, and Oliver Stephenson became Chair. Thanks to Michael and Oliver’s leadership, ably assisted by Rachael Grime and her team, our resources are now close to £10M.
I hope and believe Derbyshire Community Foundation, now retitled ‘Foundation Derbyshire’, will remain indefinitely supporting the needs, activities and culture of Derbyshire.