Enhancing the Spirit of Community and Improving the Quality of Life


The Wayne County Foundation was established in February,1979, after two years of planning by a group of future thinking, civic-minded citizens. Their goal was to create a permanent pool of capital with the flexibility to meet the community’s ever changing needs. Moreover, they recognized the benefits of energizing and nourishing charitable, cultural, educational, and community endeavors of the area in a way that would serve the people here for generations to come.

In December 1979, $100,000 in assets from the Johnson Sheet Metal Company Foundation were given to the Wayne County Foundation following the sale of that company. One year later, the Foundation made its first grants and awarded its first scholarship.

Charles A. Rodefeld is known as the founder of the Wayne County Foundation. With the advice of Bob Dick, John Harlan, Vic Jose, Doug Oler, and Hugh Ronald. Charlie provided early leadership and vision for the Foundation. He served as president for seven years and, along with family members, created a number of funds to support community projects and operate the Foundation.

Over the last 40 years, the Foundation has received more than $41,500,000 in gifts and awarded nearly $28,200,000 in grants and scholarships.


The Wayne County, Indiana, Foundation, Inc. exists to foster and encourage private philanthropic giving, to enhance the spirit of community and to improve the quality of life in the Wayne County, Indiana area now and for future generations.

To accomplish this mission, the Foundation will:

  • Serve as a Catalyst when Foundation leadership is necessary to focus attention on critical needs in Wayne County.
    Make grants and provide counsel and assistance that will have a significant impact upon recipients and will address community needs.
  • Be Responsible Stewards of contributed assets in accordance with donor wishes and the governing instruments of the foundation.
  • Champion Private Giving for the public good among the people of Wayne County.
    Provide a Flexible, Efficient and Lasting way for donors to accomplish their philanthropic goals.
  • Encourage Collaboration and cooperation among funders and service providers to address community needs.
    Adopted December 8, 2000


  • Network and Knowledge
  • Nonprofit Networking Lunches
  • Women’s Leadership Conference
  • Women’s Networking Lunches

Giving Circles:

  • Girls Just Wanna Give Giving Circle
  • Women’s Fund
  • Women’s Giving Circle: Women Helping Others

Sponsored Organizations


Annual Reports

Today. Tomorrow. Forever.
“Thanks to those of you who donate time and funds to promote the well-being and the best hopes of our fellow citizens and our community.”
— Len Clark