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Regional community foundation creates Forsyth affiliate
McCoy James


Those interested in joining the Forsyth County Community Foundation or learning more about it can contact Callie Flack at (770) 533-7395.

FORSYTH COUNTY — The North Georgia Community Foundation, a Gainesville-based organization that helps philanthropists support nonprofit organizations, is opening its first affiliate in Forsyth County.

The Forsyth County Community Foundation was recently approved by the parent group, which will govern it.

“Its [formation] is a discussion that’s been going on probably for over 15 years, I believe, and has involved a lot of different folks,” said James McCoy, an advisory committee member and president and CEO of the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce.

“Community foundations are organizations that provide an avenue for philanthropy, for organizations and families and individuals who are interested in taking part of their assets and engaging in philanthropy.”

McCoy described the foundation as a bank, saying the organization will help with the administrative portions of the process.

“Community foundations are not grant-making institutions themselves, but they are a big collection of a lot of individuals who are interested in philanthropy and they take those assets and open an account with the community foundation,” he said.

Joining McCoy on the advisory committee for the Forsyth County Community Foundation will be Jack Allen, Phill Bettis, Jayne Iglesias, Lynn Jackson, Mary Helen McGruder, David Seago, Jeff Stephens and Kevin Tallant.

The committee will work with the staff of the parent foundation and board to focus on serving the charitable needs of Forsyth. It will focus on raising funds and determining the best way to give money back to their community, while the parent foundation handles the administration, investment and daily tasks.

Jim Mathis, president of the North Georgia Community Foundation, credited McCoy for the affiliate’s formation, adding that Forsyth was a natural choice for the first expansion.

“[The] county is obviously very rapidly growing, dynamic market,” Mathis said. “A lot of people move to the lake and mountain areas and we think it’d be a good market for us and it’d be a good time to help out the nonprofit community in Forsyth County.”

Like Mathis, McCoy said that the county was the right fit and the new group would serve its changing needs.

“This is a very affluent community. It’s a high growth community,” McCoy said. “There are growing and changing needs in the community both in terms of charitable needs, but also in terms of those assets and wealth being transferred from one generation to another.

“People are looking for avenues to help protect those assets, particularly the ones dedicated to charitable causes and purposes and a community foundation is the best avenue to do that.”