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Women for Shepherd University explore the Center for Contemporary Arts, inspired philanthropy

ISSUED: 25 October 2013
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens
(Women for Shepherd University explore the Center for Contemporary Arts, inspired philanthropy)

Shepherdstown, WV--The Women for Shepherd University, sponsored by the Shepherd University Foundation, hosted a presentation, "Inspired Philanthropy," by Rebecca Powers Oct. 17 at the new Center for Contemporary Arts building.

Powers is founder of Impact Austin, a progressive leader in women's philanthropy. She talked about her personal road to inspired philanthropy. Impact Austin brings new resources to the Austin, Texas, community, while making philanthropy accessible for all women, regardless of income or financial standing. Through high-impact grant making, the group has raised more than $4 million for areas of need in central Texas.

"My only regret is that I didn't bring more women friends to hear what Rebecca had to say," said Sue Mentzer-Blair, a planning committee member. "She was obviously knowledgeable, but more than that, she was optimistic and positive. Her message that the average woman, joined with others just like her, could make a huge difference was very powerful."

Ed Herendeen, founder and producing director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival, began the evening in the state-of-the-art Stanley and Shirley A. Marinoff Theater with a call toaction for the continued support of Shepherd's fine arts program. He emphasized that place matters and talked about the many ways Shepherd and Shepherdstown have organically contributed to both the success of the CATF and of students graduating in the arts.

The evening included an in-depth tour of the CCA buildings, and John Wolff, CEO of Capital Fiduciary Advisors, Inc., a wealth management and financial planning company in Reston, Virginia, sponsored a dessert and wine reception following the presentation.

Bev Hughes, also a member of the planning committee, said she thought the buildings were impressive and of the presentation said, "The thing that grabbed me is that everyone is an equal partner in a program like this. Everyone has equal footing and feels like they are contributing. One woman, one vote."

Women's family and financial responsibilities are sometimes growing faster than their knowledge. Today's women are responsible for making decisions about eldercare, retirement, estate planning, and more. By engaging the Shepherd community and bringing women together in social forums to offer information on life issues as presented by trusted experts within a community of peers, Women for Shepherd University hopes to demystify such issues and offer solutions. Participants in these women-centered programs will also learn firsthand about the current scope and landscape of Shepherd, as well as the positive impact volunteer leadership can have.

If you are interested in learning more about Women for Shepherd University, please contact Meg Peterson, Shepherd University Foundation, P.O. Box 5000, Shepherdstown, WV, 25443-5000, 304-876-5021, mlingenf@shepherd.edu or visit www.shepherd.edu/fndtnweb.

-30-WILKIE

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PHOTO: (from l.) Rebecca Powers, founder of Impact Austin, is welcomed by James McNeel, Managing Director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival, Monica Lingenfelter, Executive Vice President of the Shepherd University Foundation, and President Suzanne Shipley.

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