Town-Gown Fund Awards $62K to Local Organizations

Village of Clinton Sign
Village of Clinton Sign

The Hamilton College Town-Gown Fund Committee distributed $62,000 to eight organizations in the Town of Kirkland, the largest disbursement since grants were first made in 2001.


The Clinton Central School District received $18,331, which it will leverage with funding from the local BOCES to provide wireless access throughout its three-building campus. The project includes purchasing and installing 81 access points and the accompanying firewall protections and licensing. This is the largest grant made by the committee in its 11 years of existence.

The committee also provided $15,000 to fund the Kirkland Town Library’s proposal to purchase furnishings for the Bristol Room and to resurface the parking lot and driveway.

“Many of these grants are directed to projects that were unlikely to be funded any other way,” said Hamilton President Joan Hinde Stewart, who also chairs the committee. “It is gratifying to support the fine work of our local non-profit and public safety organizations, especially in a time of fiscal constraint.”

Other local organizations to receive funding from the Hamilton College Town-Gown Fund include:

• Clinton Fire Department, $8,469 to support EMS priorities
• Kirkland Art Center, $7,500 to create a wheelchair accessible art studio
• Clinton Central School Foundation, $6,200 for its annual appeal
• Clinton Historical Society, $3,000 for programming during its 50th anniversary
• Kirkland Police Department, $2,500 for general operations
• Clinton Chamber of Commerce, $1,000 to support the Art & Music Festival


The Hamilton College Town-Gown Fund was created in 2001 by anonymous donors to foster goodwill and better communication among the college, the Town of Kirkland and the Village of Clinton. Since its founding, the endowed fund has received more than $1 million in gifts. Each year, the income earned from investing the donations is used to make grants to organizations in the Town of Kirkland.

To date, the Town-Gown Fund has provided more than $380,000 to organizations in the town.

In addition to Stewart, members of the Town-Gown Committee include local businesspeople John Fehlner of the Clinton Cider Mill, Tom Owens of ACCESS Federal Credit Union and Linda McHarris of the Artists Corner; Clinton Mayor and Clinton Shoe Center owner Jack Lane; Clinton Central Schools Superintendent Matt Reilly; Hamilton Professor of French John O’Neal; Hamilton alumnus and Hamilton Point Investment Advisors President Andrew Burns '78; electrical contractor and Town of Kirkland Councilman Mike O’Neill; and Hamilton trustees Amy Owens Goodfriend '82 and Jack Withiam '71. Goodfriend is a native of Clinton.

Hamilton Vice President for Communications and Development Dick Tantillo and Assistant Vice President of Communications Mike Debraggio sit on the committee as ex officio members. Donations to the fund can be made by contacting Tantillo or Debraggio.

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