link to facebook link to pinterest link to youtube
SCC Alumni, Friends
and Supporters link to SCC LinkedIn site
SFCC Alumni, Friends
and Supporters link to SFCC LinkedIn site

Spokane Valley Fire Fighters Scholarship Recipients

Darrin Coldiron from the Spokane Valley Fire Fighters with several of their scholarship recipients. Numerous firefighters donate to their scholarship via payroll deduction which then is donated to the CCS Foundation.

I Scream, You Scream...
No screams last week, just hugs and tears. Several scholarship recipients and donors had a chance to meet one another at the CCS Foundation's Annual Ice Cream Social Scholarship Celebration on Wednesday, October 3, 2012. Click here for more photos.

Foundation Receives 800+ Scholarship Applications
Numbers Surpass Previous Years
The Community Colleges of Spokane Foundation received over 800 scholarship applications for the 2012-2013 academic year. Of course, we aren't able to help them all but we are proud to say that we have awarded over 175 scholarships in the amount of $330,000 to very deserving students and we're not done yet.

2011 Spokane Teachers Credit Union / CCS Foundation
Exceptional Faculty Awards


Jenny Houck, Instructor, College Prep
Robert (Mike) Hunley, Instructor, Corrections ABE/GED
Suzanne McCurdy, Counselor, Student Services


Erin Clason, Instructor, Health Education and Sonography
Doug Nelson, Instructor, Economics
Barbara Rielly, Instructor, Legal Administrative Assistant


Heather Keast, Instructor, Title III Activity Director
KayDee Steele, Instructor, Chemical Dependency
Josh Westermann, Instructor, English

Click here to view the Exceptional Faculty Award recipients' bios. 


Saling Award for Excellence

Debra Alley, Confidential Assistant to the President, SCC
Virginia Tomlinson, Dean of Arts & Sciences Division, SCC

Debi Alley, Otto and Virginia Tomlinson

Saling Award winners Debi and Virginia enjoyed an evening of baseball and fun at the 6th Annual CCS Alumni and Staff Night with the Spokane Indians.

Click here to view the Saling Award recipients' bios.

Congratulations to the 3rd Annual CCS Foundation Alumni Association Fall Raffle

Grand Prize Winner of the Apple iPad

2011-2012 Touch the Future House Complete
2012 Touch the Future House
13018 E 39th Lane, Spokane Valley


One of a kind rancher situated on one of the most private lots in the Spokane Valley. Enjoy the pastoral view from this ample rear deck which is partially covered. Open and spacious great room with cathedral ceilings. Step saver kitchen with island and tile backsplash. Main floor utilities with mud room access insulated sheet rocked garage. Lower level ready to finish. Landscaped yard with timed sprinkler system. Too many amenities to list.


Kitchen Master Bath
Rear Deck
CCS Foundation Announces Award Winners





Jennifer Achziger
Jennifer Achziger

Special thank you to all our supporters...Additional prize winners include..

CCS Bigfoot Golf Classic Nike Jacket
Sheryl Birkett
Ticket Number 1132

Ironman Horseshoe Skier
Diane Brown
Ticket Number 1363

$25 Mustard Seed Gift Card
Mark Fox
Ticket Number 1202

Bigfoot Golf Classic T-shirts and Backpack
Toemasina Talafili
Ticket Number 2241

Spokane Chiefs Tickets, Shirt and Autographed Puck
Laurie Kyle
Ticket Number 2141

$75 Zenaida Spa Gift Certificate
Kathy George
Ticket Number 1441

$27 Silver Safari Gift Certificate
Linda Murray
Ticket Number 1932

$27 Silver Safari Gift Certificate
Bridget Piper
Ticket Number 1483

Tony Higley Named to Lead CCS Foundation

Tony HigleyTony Higley, former president of Gonzaga University’s Bull Dog Club, has been named the new executive director of Community Colleges of Spokane Foundation, according to Foundation Board Chair George Schillinger. He replaces Gail Stevenson, who retires in October.

Higley brings more than 30 years of fundraising experience to CCS. As President of the Gonzaga University Bulldog Club (1987-97), Higley worked in many fundraising capacities for the university’s athletics programs. He also was a 10-year member of Gonzaga’s planned giving committee and sat on the Dean’s Business Forum advisory board. In addition, Higley has served on the CCS Foundation board of directors since 2005 and served on successful capital and levy campaigns for Central Valley School District.

“Tony has a tremendous passion and commitment to the mission of our community colleges and that of the foundation. He will be an excellent leader in our fundraising efforts and a conscientious steward of the foundation’s diverse assets,” Schillinger said.

Owner and president of Certified Appraisal, Inc., since 1991, Higley is a licensed Realtor and certified appraiser. He has taught for the Spokane Association of Realtors, Windermere Real Estate and Spokane Falls Community College.
A graduate of Gonzaga University (1972-76), Higley has bachelor’s degrees in marketing and finance and was named 1987 Baseball Alumni of the Year at the university.

Dale Wilson-Making Dreams Come True through Planned Giving

Nearly 40 years ago, Dale Wilson, a farmer from Davenport, decided to make an ultimate gift benefitting several colleges, churches, and high schools in the Greater Spokane area through his estate. Upon his death in 1978, he left instructions to establish a trust and to distribute the net income from the trust to a variety of local organizations, including Community Colleges of Spokane (CCS). CCS Foundation received annual gifts from the trust for 30 years, which provided scholarships to CCS students who were residents of Lincoln or Spokane County.
Wilson’s estate also contained a provision that, at the end of 30 years from the date of his death, the trust estate should be distributed. In December 2008, CCS Foundation received $550,000 from the Dale Wilson Trust. Timing of this gift could not have been better, as it enabled the foundation to weather an economically challenging year by providing funds that were used, in part, to offer scholarships to CCS students for the 2009-10 academic year. Remaining funds from the trust will help CCS Foundation meet the needs of CCS students and programs in the future.
The generosity and forward thinking of Dale Wilson has touched the lives of hundreds of students and will continue to make an impact for years to come. To learn more about how you can help students realize their dreams through a planned gift, contact the foundation office at (509) 434-5123.

Mary Ann Sanger
Dec 12, 1957 - July 11, 2009

Mary Ann SangerCommunity Colleges of Spokane and the CCS Foundation lost a friend on July 11, 2009 when beloved Spokane Falls Community College instructor Mary Ann Sanger passed away after an 11 year battle with cancer.

Mary Ann’s enthusiasm for life and optimistic personality made her well-loved by all who knew her. She was a 2009 Spokane Teachers Credit Union/CCS Foundation Exceptional Faculty Award recipient and served as a faculty representative on the CCS Foundation Board of Directors for six years.

As a tireless champion for the Foundation and for CCS students, it is fitting that a scholarship fund has been set up in Mary Ann’s name. To make a gift in her memory,
click here or send your contribution to the Foundation at the address below and indicate that it should be directed to the Mary Ann Sanger Academic Work Scholarship Fund.


6th Annual Bigfoot Golf Classic
Raises over $28,000 

Congratulations to our winners!


Hull-Hull-Stennes & Mooney
1st Place Gross
Hull, Hull, Stennes & Mooney

1st Place Net
Miller - Coors - Odom

3 Kondos and a Johnson
1st Place Net Men
3 Kondos and a Johnson

Spokane Regional Sports Commission 
1st Place Net Mixed
Spokane Regional Sports Commission

Banner Bank
2nd Place Net Men
Banner Bank

Avista Corporation
2nd Place Net Mixed
Avista Corporation

Northern Quest Resort & Casino Teams 1A and 1B
3rd Place Net  Men
Northern Quest Resort & Casino
Team 1B

Swinging Doors
3rd Place Net Mixed
Swinging Doors


   Congratulations to the following specialty hole winners


Women's Longest Drive Hole #10

Chana Owens

Women's Longest Drive Hole #17

Kara Winey

Women's Closest to the Pin Hole #6

Carol Landa-McVicker

Women's Closest to the Pin Hole #16

Barb Materne

Men's Longest Drive Hole #5

Peter Sisich

Men's Longest Drive Hole #14

Marcus Stennes

Men's Closest to the Pin Hole #8

Erik Keating

Men's Closest to the Pin Hole #12

Greg Mooney




Special thanks to our 2009 Bigfoot Golf Classic Sponsors.


CCS Foundation Launches Touch the Future House Campaign 

Touch the Future House StudentsThe CCS Foundation Board has announced plans to raise $400,000 for its Touch the Future House project.  This project, one of the foundation’s core activities, provides hands-on learning opportunities for students, while generating funds for scholarships and career and technical programs.  

Led by CCS Foundation Board vice-president George Schillinger, a group of volunteers will be inviting community-minded businesses and individuals to support this project over the next few months. 


Touch the Future House Scholarship Recipients.“The Touch the Future House is one of the best investments a donor can make,” says Schillinger.  “With one gift, you help people get the training they need to start a new career, you help others who can’t afford to go to college without scholarships, and you help the community colleges provide top-notch training.”


To learn more about the Touch the Future House, click here, or visit the foundation’s “donate now” page to make a pledge to the campaign.

Click here to view an informational video about the Touch the Future House
Click here to view an informational video
about the Touch the Future House Project.






CCS Foundation Annual Mini-Grant
Winter 2009 Recipients


28 applications were submitted for consideration. Members of the evaluation committee included CCS Foundation Board members Craig Soehren and Lionel Greenwood, CCS representatives Marlene Cortez, Linda Keys, Jenni Martin, Pat McGinty, Molly Popchock and Virginia Tomlinson, and foundation staff member Patci Ryan. Each application was carefully reviewed and discussed in terms of how the proposed project demonstrated a commitment to student learning and the college community. The committee was pleased to award 14 mini-grants for a total of $15,290. The recipients were:

Duane Sunwold and Diana Osborne, SCC Avista Center for Entrepreneurship, 2009 NACCE Conference, $1500 ($750 each)
Two faculty members will attend the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship Annual Conference (NACCE). The faculty members were invited to represent and showcase the Avista Center for Entrepreneurship as a model for other community colleges. In addition, workshops will enhance curriculum, program attributes and content.

Methea Sapp, SCC Sciences Department, Oceans 102 Field Trip, $1,500
Hands-on experience aboard a research vessel owned and operated through the University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Laboratory will allow students to sample and identify the variety of invertebrate life and aquatic biomes found within Friday Harbor. 

Donna Syron, District Academic Services, Ticket to Ride, $1,160
Bus passes will be provided for low-income students enrolled in specific programs through the integrated Basic Education and Skills Training (I-BEST) program. This is a pilot project for winter quarter and will impact approximately 58 students.

Lisa Adnet, IEL Customized Job Skills Training (CJST), Dressed for Workplace Success, $650
This grant will fill a need for CJST students living in poverty who need clothing items that are difficult to obtain through donations or thrift stores, such as undergarments and large size shoes. Appropriate clothing will help these students present themselves in a professional manner as well as increase their self esteem. 

Seth Miller, SCC Environmental Science, Veteran Environmental Academy, $1,000
The academy is comprised of fourteen current students who have veteran status and are enrolled in natural resources, water resources or agricultural technology programs. The grant will provide funding for tools to be used by student volunteers performing community service to benefit natural resources restoration projects in the Spokane area.

Sharon Niblock, IEL Business and Community Training (BCT), Plus 50 REWIRED Program, $800
Professional marketing materials will be created for this innovative program. Only 15 community colleges within the United States were selected to receive funding to establish a specific program for older students needing or wanting to return to the workforce after reviewing or gaining new skills sets. The mini-grant will aid recruitment.

Jenny Houck & Christopher Cary, IEL Adult Basic Education, Your College Future – Is Online Learning the Key?, $750
This project will provide awareness of distance learning opportunities for students in small, rural populations who may not consider online learning as a potential venue for higher education. The mini-grant will provide funds to do a pilot project in a few remote areas, and will track students’ enrollment in future online CCS courses.

Jaclyn Jacot, IEL Adult Basic Education, From Generational Poverty to Middle Class Culture, $1,500
Women enrolled in the “Families That Work” program are often struggling to make the transition from public assistance to productive employment and self sufficiency. Mini-grant funds will provide resources for approximately 30 students to attend a “learning luncheon,” incorporating etiquette, acceptable dinner language and discussion topics, body language, appropriate dress, etc., in an effort to build these students’ self confidence as they enter professional occupations.

Kurt Madison, SCC Art Department, Campus Images: an ARTstor, $910
All SCC faculty and students will benefit from membership in ARTstor, which will allow access to a digital library of quality images. The use of illustrations, maps, photographs and art reproductions can present a number of copyright concerns and other property rights challenges. ARTstor membership will provide access to approximately one million unrestricted images.

Julie Litzenberger, SCC Culinary Arts, Dining in for INCA Students, $810
Third-quarter students enrolled in the Inland Northwest Culinary Academy (INCA) will experience service standards and practices through being served a multi-course meal by their peers at Orlando’s Restaurant. This will allow the students to learn from each other as patrons and servers.

Kate Robbins, IEL Adult Basic Education at WorkSource, Student ID Access at WorkSource, $800
This project will positively impact 16 to 21-year-old GED students at Work Source by helping them obtain Washington State identification documents that are necessary for students to access GED testing and Next Generation Zone (NGZ) assistance. NGZ provides career exploration, paid work experience, on-the-job training, etc. The scope of this accessibility problem will be researched and documented.

Leah Schaeffer, IEL English, Feasibility Study for Improving Student Success, $1,600
IEL English students will be monitored through a feasibility study of the Smarthinking tutoring program for English education, an online tutoring program for students enrolled in English 99, 101 and 102. Qualitative and quantitative data, including student success rates, will be collected and analyzed.

Alicia Mills, SCC WorkSource & Career Services, Allied Health Career Academy (AHCA), $1,691
The mini-grant for this project will be used to obtain uniforms/scrubs for 45 Havermale high school students working or volunteering in healthcare fields. Scrubs are required for this type of job training/experience. Logos on the scrubs will identify these students as program participants to fellow Havermale students and to medical personnel, providing the AHCA students with a professional demeanor and an incentive to complete the course(s).

Marie Miller, SFCC Business Technology, Business Etiquette Lunch, $619
Second-year business technology students will attend a luncheon designed to help them understand, practice, and apply business etiquette and professionalism in a positive and “safe” environment. The experience will help the students improve self esteem by learning how to properly interact in professional business environments. Etiquette & protocol handbooks will be distributed as a part of this education.

The committee was pleased to be able to suggest alternative funding sources for four other projects.

For questions or concerns, please contact Patci Ryan at 434-5128 or


CCS Logo


Exceptional Faculty Members Recognized


Spokane Teachers Credit Union

Nominated by students and peers, 12 outstanding CCS faculty members were selected to receive 2008 Spokane Teachers Credit Union (STCU)/CCS Foundation Exceptional Faculty Awards. Recipients have demonstrated concern for students’ educations, leadership skills, campus and community involvement, and a willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty.

Each recipient receives a $1,500 stipend funded by the STCU/CCS Foundation Exceptional Faculty Award Endowment. Since 1996, $104,000 in Exceptional Faculty Awards has been given to top CCS instructors through this endowment. 

2008 Recipients


Asa Bradley                       


Cielito Brekke                   


Cindy Deffe  


Evelyn Florio


Sylvia Garcia                      


Kathleen George            


Patricia Lamb                    


Lori Monnastes


Maria Orellana Westbrook          


Paul Overfield                  


Andrea Reid                      


Charles Zimmerman      






Saling Award Recognizes Outstanding Employees

Dr. Gerald (Jerry) SalingBolstered by a second $20,000 donation by the late Dr. Jerry Saling and his wife, Dee, CCS Foundation recently presented four Saling Awards for Excellence to outstanding professional-exempt employees/mid-level administrators at Community Colleges of Spokane. The Saling Award for Excellence Endowment was established in 2006 by Saling, a former SFCC president, and a group of retired CCS administrators, to acknowledge the contributions made by employees whose efforts often go unnoticed, but play a large part in the colleges’ continued success.



Foundation receives largest single gift ever!

Dr. Elizabeth Welty
Community philanthropist and retired physician Dr. Elizabeth Welty has donated $2 million to the CCS Foundation to establish the Drs. Robert F. and Elizabeth M. Welty Systemic Program and Professional Development Endowment. It is the single largest gift ever given to the CCS Foundation.

Income from the endowment will fund collegial, system-wide projects related to academic planning, curriculum development, training and instruction that respond to emerging regional needs.
Systemic Professional Development funds will be awarded through a competitive grant application process administered by the CCS Foundation. Proposed projects will be department/program-inclusive, focus on emerging trends and regional needs, and emphasize subject matter that students need now and in the future.

Awards span a three-year period. Funding in “Year One” enables faculty teams to research emerging issues or trends affecting their field of instruction or industry. This information will be used to revamp old curriculum, create new coursework and/or programs, and expand academic planning development. “Year Two” funding is dedicated to faculty and staff training, with “Year Three” funding committed to implementation.

The foundation will award one to two grants, totaling up to $50,000 each. A districtwide committee will evaluate grant applications. The committee will include staff and foundation board representatives, the CCS chancellor or designee, CCS Academic Services Officer, vice presidents of learning from each operating unit and SCC, SFCC and IEL faculty representatives.

For details, contact the CCS Foundation Office, 434-5123.



Application Form


Foundation's 2007-08 Annual Campaign

Exceeds $1 Million Mark 



Thanks to the generosity of CCS Foundation donors, the recently completed 2007-08 Annual Campaign raised a record $1.1 million. In addition to providing funds for student scholarships and program support, annual campaign money will be used to renovate the Warren G. Magnuson building near the Spokane Falls Community College (SFCC) campus. Community Colleges of Spokane will assume ownership of this building later this year and plans to move several key programs into the facility, including some of the Institute for Extended Learning’s adult literacy programs and SFCC’s physical therapist assistant and soon-to-be started occupational therapy assistant programs. The State of Washington will match funds raised privately for this project.





5th Annual Bigfoot Golf Classic
Raises over $33,000 

Congratulations to our winners!


Affordable Northwest Roofing
1st Place Gross
Affordable Northwest Roofing

Labatt USA
1st Place Net
Labatt USA

Charles Schwab 3A
1st Place Net Men
Charles Schwab 3A

 Avista Corporation
1st Place Net Mixed
Avista Corporation

Kondo, Kondo, Johnson & Kondo
2nd Place Net Men
Kondo, Kondo, Kondo & Johnson

Naipo, Matlock, Naipo & Parks
2nd Place Net Mixed
Naipo, Matlock, Naipo & Parks

Hull, Hull, Hull & Stennes
3rd Place Net Men
Hull, Hull, Hull & Stennes

Swinging Doors
3rd Place Net Mixed
Swinging Doors


   Congratulations to the following specialty hole winners



Women's Longest Drive Hole #10

Renee Coelho

Women's Longest Drive Hole #17

Erin Naipo

Women's Closest to the Pin Hole #6

Erin Naipo

Women's Closest to the Pin Hole #16


Men's Longest Drive Hole #5

Paul Allen

Men's Longest Drive Hole #13

Clint Hall

Men's Closest to the Pin Hole #8

Deane Osterman

Men's Closest to the Pin Hole #12

Marcus Stennes




Special thanks to our 2008 Bigfoot Golf Classic Sponsors.

Title Sponsor
Northern Quest A Kalispel Casino
Northern Quest Casino Logo         Kalispel Tribe Logo

Signature Sponsor
Odom Corporation Logo

Barbecue Sponsor


Bank of America Logo



Cart Sponsor

Zak Designs Logo

Bigfoot Hole Sponsors

Jay Affleck-Desert Hills Bank
Avista Corporation
Banner Bank
Batteries Plus
Bernardo Wills Architects
Charles Schwab
Downtown Toyota
Global Credit Union
Lube Tube

Odom Corporation
Runners Soul 
Spokane Teachers Credit Union
Swinging Doors
US Bank
Western States Insurance/
Jones & Mitchell
Zip Trip



 CCS Foundation Board Member

Named Volunteer of the Year

Stan FongIn commemoration of National Volunteer Month, CCS Foundation honored Stan Fong, president and CEO of Vehrs, Inc., with its annual Volunteer of the Year Award at the April 15 board of trustees meeting.
Fong joined the CCS Foundation Board of Directors in fall 2007 and currently serves on the foundation’s Annual Giving Committee and the Wine and Gourmet Gala Steering Committee.
Through his efforts, this year’s Wine and Gourmet Gala featured Gary Figgins of Leonetti Cellar as the event’s winemaker. Figgins rarely participates in events like the gala and Leonetti wines are nearly impossible to come by, hence Leonetti’s participation was a key factor in selling out the event before invitations could be printed.
Fong’s company, Vehrs, provided Leonetti Cellar wines for 110 guests along with cases of ultra-premium wines, crystal stemware, and other items for the silent and live auction. All totaled, Vehrs’ donation easily exceeded $8,000.
According to Foundation Executive Director Gail Stevenson and Manager of Development Staci Nelson, “The efforts of volunteers like Stan and community-minded companies like Vehrs, Inc., enable CCS to remain responsive to the needs of business and industry and provide access to critical educational opportunities for residents of our region.”

Rainbow Line

2nd Annual Wine & Gourmet Gala

March 16, 2008

The CCS Foundation held another fabulous evening of fine dining and outstanding wines at one of Spokane's premier restaurants, Spencer's for Steaks and Chops, on Sunday, March 16, 2008. Over $50,000 was raised for scholarships and the CCS Foundation Emerging Needs Endowment.

Click here to see more pictures from the event.

Students from Spokane Community College's Inland Northwest Culinary Academy worked alongside the chefs at Spencer's Restaurant to prepare a savory four course meal that was paired with top local and regional wines. Featuring "one of the most famous small wineries in the Pacific Northwest," Leonetti Cellar. Winemaker Gary Figgins was on hand at the event to comment as each wine is poured. A silent auction gave attendees the chance to take home their favorite items while supporting SCC's hospitality management department.

Contact Janice Eatherton at (509) 434-5063 or e-mail for more information regarding this event.

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The Avista Center for Entrepreneurship at SCC 
Steve Helmbrecht, Gail Stevenson & Dr. Gary LivingstonOn November 14, approximately 150 CCS Foundation board members, college administrators, faculty, community donors and students in the Center for Entrepreneurship’s inaugural class all came together to celebrate the opening of the Avista Center for Entrepreneurship at Spokane Community College.
Attendees learned about students’ business plans, toured the Center and helped to dedicate the Gary A. Livingston Board Room. Five donors--The Harriet Cheney Cowles Foundation; The Travis Garske Family; Itron, Inc; Red Lion Hotels Corporation; and Spokane Teachers Credit Union—contributed $25,000 each to name the Center’s board room in honor of CCS Chancellor Gary Livingston, who was surprised and flattered at the announcement.
Steve Helmbrecht, Itron CFO and CCS foundation board member who led the fundraising effort for the Center, applauded Avista for stepping forward with a $100,000 gift and thanked the many other entrepreneurial-minded donors who helped CCS Foundation raise a total of $307,000 for this program, far exceeding the original goal of $185,000.
Center for Entrepreneurship Donors 

More information about the Center for Entrepreneurship at SCC

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Aftan Spittle
2004-05 Western Wireless Scholarship Winner

Aftan SpittleAftan Spittle has been living on her own since she was 15 years old. She dropped out of high school for two years before realizing that an education was essential if she wanted to better her life. Determined and bright, Aftan enrolled at Havermale High School and Spokane Community Colleges’ running start program concurrently. She graduated a year later as valedictorian of her class and was over halfway to earning her A.A. degree.

Though she had never considered applying for a scholarship, when she learned about CCS Foundation’s scholarship program, she decided to give it a try.

“I thought, the worst that could happen is that they’ll say ‘no,’” she said.

Instead, CCS Foundation awarded Aftan a Western Wireless Scholarship that not only made it possible to complete her associate’s degree, but opened her eyes to the potential of scholarship help for continuing her education even further.

Now, Aftan is one semester away from a political science degree at Gonzaga University and has plans to continue on to law school. Scholarship support has helped her every step of the way and she spends hours researching and applying for awards that will offset the cost of her education.

With a world of opportunity ahead of her, Aftan is excited about what her future holds, but she is also very grateful for the support she received from CCS Foundation and for the generosity of the donors who made her scholarship possible.

According to Aftan, “My foundation scholarship showed me that there is help out there and that, if I continue to do my best, anything is possible.”

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