The Clinton Central School District was among Town-Gown grant recipients this year.
The Clinton Central School District was among Town-Gown grant recipients this year.

The Hamilton College Town-Gown Fund made $65,000 in grants to eight organizations last week, bringing the total disbursed from the endowment to more than $570,000.

“The eight organizations invited to submit proposals presented us with more than $180,000 in needs,” said Hamilton President and Town-Gown Fund Committee Chair Joan Hinde Stewart. “The committee is pleased to support the priorities of these important public safety and community organizations that serve our friends and neighbors.”

This year, the Clinton Central School District received the largest grant in the fund’s history: $25,000 to create a modern language learning lab. This award follows a $22,000 grant last year to implement common core standards in the district. The Clinton Central School District has now been awarded more than $150,000 from the Town-Gown Fund.

Other organizations receiving grants this year include the Clinton Central School Foundation, $6,500 to support district priorities; the Clinton Fire Department, $6,500 to refurbish its training facility; and the Clinton A Better Chance Program, $6,000 to offset transportation costs for prospective and current scholars.

The Kirkland Town Library received $5,700 for technology upgrades and to purchase sensory play materials; the Kirkland Police Department was awarded $5,500 to construct a handicap ramp; the Clinton Historical Society was given $5,000 for exterior painting; and the Central Oneida County Volunteer Ambulance Corps received $4,800 to upgrade its communications technology.

As stipulated in the agreement that established the Hamilton College Town-Gown Fund more than a decade ago, grants can only be made to organizations and agencies serving the Town of Kirkland and the Village of Clinton, with a primary focus on education. Funds have been used to purchase computer hardware, software and printers; conduct a summer history camp; maintain and repair facilities and make them accessible to handicapped patrons; purchase EMS equipment for emergency responders; support youth programs at the pool, library and art center; and provide training for public safety officials.

The Hamilton College Town-Gown Fund was created in 2001 by anonymous donors to foster goodwill and communication among the college and residents of 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 those donations is used to make grants to organizations in the Town of Kirkland.

In addition to Stewart, members of the Town-Gown Committee include local businesspeople Fran Alteri of Alteri’s Restaurant, Corrine Gachowski of Krizia Martin, Oneida County legislator George Joseph of North Star Orchards and Deli Rogers of Owens-Pavlot & Rogers Funeral Service; Clinton Village Trustee Carrie Evans; Clinton Central Schools Superintendent Stephen Grimm; Hamilton Professor of French John O’Neal; Hamilton Point Investment Advisors President Andrew Burns; and Hamilton College trustees Amy Owens Goodfriend and Jack Withiam. Goodfriend and Burns are natives of Clinton and graduates of Hamilton. Gachowski and Withiam are also Hamilton graduates.

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

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