The concept of a community foundation was first discussed in 2003 when three long-time residents discovered they had a common vision. Soon they recruited a volunteer exploratory committee from the community to look at the feasibility of establishing such a charity. After months of discussion the committee decided unanimously to move forward with the project and a search for an existing partner began.
By affiliating with an existing foundation, the local group learned it could receive guidance and leadership from an experienced professional staff, fall under the lead organization’s tax exempt status and benefit from professional management of its assets.
It could also have its own marketing committee, its own advisory committee and do its own fundraising and grant making under the lead organization’s umbrella.
In February, 2005, during a meeting in Milan’s historic Old Fire Barn, an Affiliate Agreement with the Community Foundation of Monroe County was signed and the Greater Milan Area Community Foundation became a reality.