Board of Directors

Who We Are

Established in 1972, the Itasca Community College Foundation is an independent 501(c)(3) charitable organization that partners with ICC to support and strengthen the college’s role in serving the educational needs of our students. We are committed to investing in student success, to supporting faculty and staff excellence, and to enhancing college facilities and programs. We believe in the strength, vitality, and flexibility of our community college, in lifelong learning for our students and graduates, and in the benefit ICC provides to area communities.

Whom We Serve

The ICC Foundation serves as a bridge between our generous donors and Itasca Community College in ensuring that long-term resources are available to support ICC students and programs.

Our focus includes:

  • Students who need financial support in pursuing their college education
  • Alumni who wish to stay connected to their alma mater
  • Itasca Community College’s need for program support and campus improvements
  • Philanthropists and community members who value higher education and would like to be a part of an exciting ICC future

Our Mission

The Itasca Community College Foundation supports and benefits students and the college by encouraging and facilitating financial contributions from alumni and friends of the college.


The Itasca Community College Foundation was established in 1972 when Will Backes, Itasca Dean of Students, Jack Freeman, owner and manager of Kremer Co. Store, Grand Rapids, and Ed Friedman, U.S. Steel Superintendent of Mines, met to discuss the need to establish a college foundation following the relocation of the college from Coleraine to Grand Rapids. Articles and By-Laws were approved by the State of Minnesota on June 21, 1972, and the IRS issued 501(c)(3) status to the Foundation on April 11, 1973. The Development Office was established on July 1, 1986, when the Blandin Foundation awarded the foundation a $30,000 one-year grant to study, prepare, and implement a deferred giving/endowment fund program and update the alumni list.

Since its beginning in 1972, the Itasca Community College Foundation has supported students and the college by encouraging financial contributions from alumni and friends. After beginning with modest awards of $3,600 in 1986, the Foundation has now surpassed the $2 million benchmark for total student scholarship dollars awarded. The Foundation currently manages more than 50 endowed scholarship funds and 11 endowed programs, all established to benefit students and strengthen and enhance the campus community. We are very proud to have assisted thousands of students pursuing a college education at Itasca.

In addition, the Foundation has provided nearly $500,000 in grant funding for equipment purchases, student experiences, campus projects, and faculty and staff initiatives not normally funded through the college budget.

A broad range of scholarship awards are offered annually; some are for high achieving scholars, some for particular programs or fields of study, and many for average students to whom alumni and other donors want to give a helping hand in acknowledgment and thanks for this wonderful community college.

Established by forward-thinking community members many years ago, the Foundation continues its tradition of supporting Itasca Community College through an exceptional Board of Directors, dedicated staff, and generous donors.