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The DeKalb County Community Foundation is pleased to announce the Joel and Helen Maurer Family Fund. This new Community Impact Fund reflects the Maurer family values of community and service. Plus, it adds resources to the Foundation’s Board-directed grant programs, allowing them to respond to needs and opportunities throughout DeKalb County.
“We love this community and want to give back broadly through this Fund,” said Joel and Helen. “Our two daughters and their spouses all work as social service professionals, so we feel this Fund reflects who we are as a family. A family of service and community.”
Joel and Helen Maurer were both raised on small farms in Central Illinois. Joel was raised in Sullivan, IL, and Helen in Hopedale. Helen attended Illinois Wesleyan University and then the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, graduating with a master’s degree in social work. Joel also attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and graduated with a civil engineering degree.
After graduating from college, they married in 1977 and had two daughters. Joel and Helen moved to DeKalb County in 1985. Joel began working as a civil engineer for the City of DeKalb and continued this work for 28 years until retirement. Helen started serving as a medical/geriatric licensed clinical social worker in the DeKalb community.
Both Joel and Helen are community-focused and intentionally make an effort to understand needs and help where they can. Helen has had a firsthand look at community needs and resources through her social worker role for many years. Joel took on a leadership role at the Sycamore United Methodist Church food pantry and volunteered at the Community Gardens. They both enjoy connecting with and serving international students at NIU.
The idea to create a Fund came a few years back when Joel and Helen made an estate plan. As they talked through options for giving back to the community, they were reminded of the annual Give DeKalb County event and the local impact from the DeKalb County Community Foundation. They explored giving options through the Community Foundation and decided upon a Fund that supports the needs of the entire community, a Community Impact Fund.
“We are so honored that Joel and Helen started an endowed Community Impact Fund at their local Community Foundation,” said Executive Director Dan Templin. “Funds like this provide grant resources to our Board allowing them to address changing needs in a variety of issue areas throughout DeKalb County for generations to come!”
Donations to any Fund at the Community Foundation, including the Joel and Helen Maurer Family Fund, can be made online or by mail to the DeKalb County Community Foundation, 475 DeKalb Avenue, Sycamore, IL 60178. For questions or to start your charitable Fund, please contact Dan Templin at 815-748-5383 or email@example.com.