A foundation funded by GlobalFoundries on Tuesday awarded $242,000 to 27 Stillwater community organizations, from youth programs to Revolutionary War re-enactors.
The distribution by the GlobalFoundries-Town of Stillwater Foundation came from $1 million the computer chip manufacturer gave the town last year under a community benefit agreement tied to completion of its Fab 8 plant in Luther Forest.
“The way we look at ourselves, we’re not a separate, stand-alone corporation that’s come into the community; we are part of the community,” said Mike Russo, GlobalFoundries’ director of federal government relations and a member of the foundation board.
The Stillwater foundation is similar to the GlobalFoundries-Town of Malta Foundation started two years ago, except that fund now has a $3 million endowment.
While the Malta fund has been providing money to community organizations from the earned interest, Stillwater officials decided to spend some of the principal to boost funding levels.
“The interest would have been a very small amount,” said JoAnn Winchell, chairwoman of the foundation board.
The awards announced Tuesday at Stillwater Town Hall were the foundation’s first.
The largest recipient was the Stillwater Central School District, which got money for five different programs. The district received $41,619 to pay for a program providing free food over weekends to students at risk; a program promoting science, technology and mathematics education; health program supplies; rock climbing walls for fitness; and development of a nature trail between the school and the Hudson River.
The Stillwater Education Foundation, a nonprofit organization that can supplement the school district’s education funding, is receiving $30,000 to distribute as it sees fit.
“We will give them a sum of money, and they will receive applications for us and hopefully make wise decisions,” Winchell said.
The Stillwater Area Community Center is getting $32,000 to support community theater programs, develop a community garden and pay for repairs and upgrades in the kitchen. There is also $24,000 for repairs and improvements at the Stillwater Blockhouse, now a museum.
Earl J. Manning American Legion Post 490 is getting $35,000 to help support building repairs, upgrades and maintenance. Henry Lefko American Legion Post 1644 and its Ladies Auxiliary received a combined $31,600 for similar work to their building.
“Most of our applications were from organizations that serve youth. We’re very proud of our veterans,” Winchell said.
There were smaller grants given, as well, including $1,000 for equipment and supplies for the 13th Regiment of the Albany Militia Historical Society, which does re-enactments at the Saratoga National Historic Park, site of a key battle in the American Revolution.
In all, Winchell said, the committee received applications from 46 organizations for more than $1.2 million — far more than the committee could afford.
“We are proud of the work of the committee,” she said.
The Stillwater foundation received $1 million and the Malta foundation $3 million because Fab 8 is in Malta, though some of GlobalFoundries’ land and about one-quarter of the Luther Forest Technology Campus are in Stillwater.
Town Supervisor Edward Kinowski was effusive in his praise for the chipmaker, which now employs 2,000 and is considering a second factory on the campus.
“Thank god for GlobalFoundries. They’ve done amazing things for the town, as far as I’m concerned, by their donations and the jobs they’ve provided,” he said.