4 Questions with Maier Foundation Inc. - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

4 Questions with Maier Foundation Inc.

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Maier Foundation Inc. is a private, non-profit charitable corporation located in Charleston with the primary focus of furthering higher education in West Virginia as well as higher education for West Virginia residents.

Philanthropist William J. Maier Jr. established the foundation in 1958.

Brad Rowe, president and board member with Maier Foundation Inc., answered four  questions about giving and philanthropy. According to Philanthropy West Virginia, the Mountain state had approximately 140 foundations based in the state. That number grew to 300 by 2011.

 

The State Journal: What is the biggest misconception about giving and philanthropy? 

 

Brad Rowe: That giving away money is easy. Like most foundations, we receive significantly more grant requests than we have the ability to fund. With limited funds there are always tough decisions to make.

 

TSJ: What is your favorite grant?

 

BR: For sentimental reasons, probably the creation of the need-based scholarship endowment at Harvard University. Our founder attended Harvard on a need-based scholarship and it was the first grant our foundation ever made. The endowment is up to $60 million and provides scholarships to over 50 students a year.

 

TSJ: What is left on your to-do list?

 

BR: To continue our focus on supporting higher education for West Virginia students. We have also started a focus on ethics education.

 

TSJ: Why is your focus on higher education?

 

BR: Obtaining an education is the best way for an individual to move up the economic ladder and improve their life. Scholarships make a real difference in getting students through graduation to become part of the educated workforce.