Getting Grants

Corporate Angels

Picnic Precautions

Exporters Online

Police Grants

PSE&G Awards

Flood Relief

NJ Banking

Corrections or additions?

Published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on July 19, 2000. All rights

reserved.

That First Million: How to Give It Away

Once you’ve made your first several million dollars,

and going to work every day is beginning to seem redundant, you sell

your company, set aside money to live on, and put the remainder into

a family-run foundation, where it can stay free of taxes and be given

out to good causes. You get to choose the causes.

That scenario may sound like a dream to most of us, but more than

one family in the Princeton area has gone this route. A special

umbrella

foundation (Princeton Area Community Foundation, 609-688-0300) was

established to take care of the paperwork for some of these would-be

philanthropists. Still, some small foundations rent office spaces

and employ directors.

One of these, the Infinity Foundation, has a half-time director, Susan

Vik. When Vik’s landlord vacated the office she subleased at

Research

Park, she found new quarters on Alexander Road in the Daily Plan It,

the shared office space operated by the nonprofit Community Options.

In between unpacking boxes, she answered some questions and declined

to answer others. After all, the philanthropist she works for is

trying

to remain anonymous. And no, he is not that high profile but anonymous

benefactor of unusual causes in Princeton, the Chocolate Cat.

Vik was an office manager at one of the businesses owned by the

founder

of the foundation. "I’m learning as I going along," she says.

A Massachusetts native, she is a 1977 graduate of Our Lady of Elms,

just outside of Boston in Chicopee, Massachusetts. Her other half-time

job is in the private client technology human resources department

for Merrill Lynch, and her office is now in Somerset. Married to James

Vik, who works for Princeton Nurseries in Allentown, she does regular

volunteer services for some elderly people in Kingston and for the

ladies auxiliary of the Kingston Fire Company.

How much money do Princeton’s philanthropists have? Less than J.

Seward

Johnson Jr. but more than the average Joe. The granting budget for

the six-year-old Infinity Foundation has been as high as $300,000

per year, and Vik gives out grants of from $1,000 to $60,000. She

declines to specify the foundation’s total assets. "We do

absolutely

no fundraising and all of our funding is private funding from the

trustees, all from Princeton," says Vik.

The New Jersey Grants Guide, published by Grant Guides Plus ($149,

www.grantseeker.com), lists several Princeton area foundations:

The James Kerney Foundation (founders of the Trenton

Times)

has $4.2 million in assets and gave a total of $120,000 in grants

ranging from $1,500 to $20,000.

The Mills Foundation (Bradford Investment Partners at

44 Nassau Street) has $2.1 million and gave grants in the $1,000 to

$5,000 range.

The Mary Owen Borden Memorial Foundation on Bayberry Road

gives grants to Mercer and Monmouth county organizations totaling

$328,000 a year, with an average grant at $8,000.

The Fruscione Foundation at Quakerbridge Plaza is giving

away about $120,000 per year, ranging from $100 to $50,000.

Each foundation has its own requirements for how to apply, and

the New Jersey Grants Guide provides all that information, but the

Infinity Foundation has a particularly easy process. If you represent

a nonprofit, just send a letter. Your group might not get funding

if you submit an application, but you won’t get funded if you don’t.

Past grants have gone to non-profits all over the world plus to

Womanspace,

HomeFront, Trenton Soup Kitchen, Mercer Street Friends, Trenton

Rescue Mission, Isles, and the now defunct Holistic Health

Association.

"We’re very mindful of organizations in our neighborhood,"

says Vik.

To decide who gets what money, she and other board members do site

visits to see the physical spaces and meet the executive directors

of the different organizations. "We’re great believers in

education,"

says Vik. Grants have gone to the University of Santa Barbara,

Rutgers,

Columbia University, and the University of Hawaii. "A good way

to describe us is that we give for educational and spiritual

development,

body, mind and spirit grants, and caring and sharing grants."

"Cornell University is sponsoring a big event that has to do with

harmony with religion that definitely intrigues our board," she

says. The foundation is also supporting an event staged by Rutgers’

philosophy department.

Why the name Infinity? Because, says Vik, "hopefully it stays

on forever and ever."

The Infinity Foundation, 707 Alexander Road,

Building

2 Suite 208, Princeton 08540. Susan Vik, director. 609-419-1664; fax,

609-419-1665. Home page: www.infinityfoundation.com.

Top Of Page
Getting Grants

September 15 is the deadline for nonprofit organizations

to request grants from the Princeton Area Community Foundation’s

unrestricted

endowment funds. Call Joan Burkholtz at 609-688-0300 for guidelines

and submission materials. Decisions will be announced in early

December.

PACF did research on how to better serve local agencies and has

devised

three categories. Try to propose something in one of the three.

Up to $50,000 for community-building efforts that will

develop existing and potential strengths and encourage leadership

in the region. Priority will be given to Trenton projects as well

as to those that enhance regional partnerships across municipal

boundaries.

Up to $10,000 for ways to build and strengthen the self

sufficiency

of at-risk populations. Priority will be given to programs that can

make a permanent difference in people’s lives by improving health,

economic stability, living conditions, and learning opportunities.

Up to $5,000 for efforts to build organizational

capacity

and heighten productivity. Support for staff and volunteer training,

strategic planning, fundraising, improved use of technology,

addressing

issues of diversity, and measuring outcomes will be provided to

organizations

with a documented track record of successful and effective

programming.

PACF administers 76 individual funds valued at more than $11 million.

To contribute to PACF’s community endowment, call Nancy Kieling,

executive director, or send tax-deductible gifts to PACF, 188 Tamarack

Circle, Skillman 08558. Last year PACF granted more than $834,000

in areas ranging from education to the environment.

Top Of Page
Corporate Angels

Mercedes-Benz of Princeton and its owner, Robert

Greces, donated the $46,000 Mercedes-Benz SLK car for the June

Fete raffle conducted by the Auxiliary of the Medical Center at

Princeton.

The winner was Lawrence Levy, a New York resident who bought

the ticket in Lambertville, says Betty Greber, raffle chair.

Proceeds will benefit cancer programs at the Medical Center. For

information

on programs and volunteer opportunities at the Medical Center, call

609-497-4069.

United Parcel Service donated $75,000 worth of

Olympics-related

sports equipment to the Trenton Area YMCA, one of 20 organizations

worldwide to participate in the UPS Olympic Sports Legacy Program.

Sal Triolo , a UPS driver and a member of the Y, was instrumental

in obtaining the donation. The tennis, badminton, canoeing,

basketball,

hockey, boxing, and other equipment will benefit 300 youngsters in

summer camps (such as Camp Meta), after school programs, and other

activities. The YMCA is on Pennington Avenue.

Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is donating

part of its proceeds to Canine Companions for Independence (CCI).

Set for Friday through Sunday, July 28 to 30, at Solberg Airport in

Readington, the festival features 125 balloons, ascending twice daily,

plus twice-daily air shows, fireworks on Friday and the Beach Boys

on Saturday night.

Tickets are available at a discounted rate through CCI, the nonprofit

organization that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by

providing highly trained assistance dogs at no cost to the receiving

child or adult. Ticket payment should be sent to CCI NJ Chapter,

attention

NJFOB Tkts, 33 Sleepy Hollow Road, Andover NJ 07821-3326. Tickets

are $12 for adults and $5 for children plus $3 per order for postage

and handling. Tickets will be mailed requiring a signature. For

information

call 973-786-5656.

P.J.’s Pancake House on Nassau Street is raising money

to help find a cure to Parkinson’s Disease. It is donating the profits

from online sale of its gift items, such as the buttermilk pancake

mix and maple syrup, to finance scientific research

(www.pancakes.com).

Items include a gift basket with syrup, mix, kitchen towel, whisk,

apron, spatula, oven mitt, and biscotti, for $39.95. Many of these

items are also on sale at the restaurant. P.J.s is owned by the Martin

Tuchmans; he is CEO of Interpool, the publicly traded company on

College

Road.

The Mercer County Bar Association collected children’s

books for the Children’s Home Society, Martin House, and Mt. Carmel

Guild. "The lawyers of Mercer County are continuously developing

projects to improve the quality of life to those fortunate," says

Francine Kowalczyk , executive director of the association. The

goal was 600 books. For information call 609-585-6200.

Participating members of the committee included those from the firms

of Stark & Stark, Fox Rothschild et al, Sterns & Weinroth, Pellettieri

Rabstein & Altman, Drinker, Biddle & Shanley, Hill Wallack, Rothenberg

& Rubinstein, Courter Kobert Laufer & Cohen, Teich Groh Frost &

Zindler,

Staub & Sumners, Lenox Socey et al, Kessler Tutek et al, Legal Aid

Society of Mercer County, and Sovereign Bank.

Individual participants included Ryan H. Lilienthal, Ivy Minely,

Joseph Bocchini, Maria Rocco, Joseph Eustace, Elaine D. Dietrich,

Leilani Malamug-Holgado, and D.G. Sarsfield.

Comcast Cable Communications Inc. is sponsoring public

service announcements and print materials to promote computer literacy

in communities of color. The project involves cable companies,

programming

networks, and high tech companies. Through September 30 announcements

worth more than $2.5 million will air in 10 markets, including

Philadelphia,

and will raise awareness of the benefits of computer literacy. In

the second phase, Comcast will work with the Digital Bridge Alliance

to make computer technology available at a community center in

Detroit.

Governor Christine Whitman announced a grant of $145,000

to assist in the development of the Park Place West Intercept Parking

project in Cranbury under the New Jersey Department of

Transportation’s

Local Aid for Centers of Places Program. This program grants awards

to non-traditional transportation, and provides towns with the money

and assistance to create biking and walking paths, restore historic

structures or begin downtown beautification projects.

The Local Aid for Centers program is administered through the NJDOT’s

Local Aide Program and supported by the New Jersey Transportation

Trust Fund.

Top Of Page
Picnic Precautions

The more exotic your location for the company picnic,

the riskier it is, says Regina Spratt, risk control strategies

practice leader of Marsh, a Morristown-based risk advisor and

insurance

broker. Hold the outing during non-work hours, make attendance

voluntary,

and take precautions.

Choose venues prudently. Be particularly careful about

amusement parks, water parks, or other theme of public parks, to be

sure they are safe for families of employees.

Check locations thoroughly. Before booking, do a thorough

walk through to check for level playing surfaces and well-maintained

equipment. Ask about safety history and, if renting equipment, do

a background check on the provider.

Control the environment. If alcohol will be served,

consider

a "two free-drink ticket" policy.

Avoid high-risk activities. Think twice about recreational

boating or paint ball games.

Monitor catering and food preparation. Hire a licensed

caterer or, if employees are handling food preparation, be sure food

is properly cooked and refrigerated.

Have a proper first aid kit available.

In addition to other obvious precautions, such as checking

accessibility

of the site and ensuring child supervision, remember to brief

supervisors

on the potential for sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence

at the event and remind them how to deal with potential problems.

"A company picnic gone awry could do more harm than good,"

says Spratt. "However, an appropriate amount of planning can make

sure these activities go a long way to build employee morale and

promote

teamwork."

Top Of Page
Exporters Online

If your company is among the 2,000 companies in the

state to export goods or services, you can have a free online listing

at www.njexport.com. The state commerce and economic growth commission

is funding this site, and the Regional Business Partnership

(a Newark-based membership group is organizing it. IBS Interactive

is designing the site, and Business News New Jersey will collect and

update the data.

Listings will include types of exports, contact names, and locations,

particularly for small and mid-size companies. Last year the six top

importers (Canada, Japan, United Kingdom, Mexico, the Netherlands,

and Israel) bought more than $1 billion in products and services from

New Jersey firms, and the state’s overall exports totaled $22.7

billion,

making it the ninth largest exporter in the nation. For questions

about the project, call Barbara E. Kauffman of the Regional

Business Partnership at 973-242-4219.

Top Of Page
Police Grants

Thanks to a $1 surcharge on every motor vehicle and

traffic fine or penalty, more than $3.5 million is available to buy

protective vests for law enforcement officers. Attorney General John

J. Farmer Jr. and Kathryn Flicker, director of the criminal

justice division, announced that this program could equip 20 percent

of each department’s eligible officers with new protective vests.

About 580 agencies, with about 37,000 officers, can submit

applications

by September 15. Each agency that applies before this deadline is

guaranteed to receive a minimum of $500. But the agency must apply.

For help, call 609-292-1492.

Top Of Page
PSE&G Awards

Public Service Electric & Gas has an award program for

new construction that recognizes commitment to energy efficiency.

Din Attarwala is being recognized for a home, currently under

construction in Princeton Greens, and Michael A. Giori for a

home on Dublin Road in Hopewell.

EEH 5 Star homes can include such upgrades as extra levels of

insulation,

high efficiency HVAC systems, insulated or storm windows and doors,

sealed and insulated ductwork, and energy-efficient controls. Buyers

of these homes may be eligible for special mortgage programs with

stretched qualifying ratios, reduced interest rates, or reduced

mortgage

closing fees. For information on this program call 800-220-8090.

Top Of Page
Flood Relief

August 31 is the new deadline for victims of Tropical

Storm Floyd to apply for assistance under the state’s disaster relief

program. "I want to be sure every victim has the time they need

to request assistance," says Governor Christie Whitman.

The program offers grants of up to $15,000 to storm victims whose

needs are not covered by assistance from federal government or

insurance

claims.

Funds can also help reduce the payoff amounts of disaster assistance

loans from the Small Business Administration. Loan balances can be

reduced by 20 percent, to a maximum of $15,000. For SBA information

call 800-659-2955, and for the Disaster Relief Program call

609-292-2636.

Grant recipients must certify losses.

Top Of Page
NJ Banking

The summer, 2000, edition of the NJBA New Jersey

Financial

Directory is available. Published by Thomson Financial Publishing,

the directory includes the latest alphabetical listings, addresses,

and phone numbers and 1999 year-end financials of all New Jersey

financial

institutions, correspondents, and holding companies. Banks and

branches

are listed by town, along with the town’s population and the name

of the county and Federal Reserve District in which they are located.

The NJBA is offering directories for as little as $27, depending on

the quantity ordered.


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