$60,000 grant to FD schools comes from 1927 grad

The Fort Dodge Community School District has received a $60,000 grant from the Pontius Foundation Family Trust.

Andrew Pontius was a 1927 graduate of Fort Dodge Senior High, according to Brandon Hansel, FDCSD director of financial services

“Mr. Pontius and his family are from the area,” Hansel said. “He had been through the Fort Dodge school system. And for him in particular, the athletic programming in the district made a significant impact on his life. Upon his passing, he wanted to leave a legacy of ongoing financial support for the activities and athletics programs here in the district.”

The district has been receiving this grant for more than 15 years.

“My records go back as far as 1997,” Hansel said. “We’ve received $1,235,000 since 1997.”

The majority of the funds will go toward supporting the middle school’s athletic programs.

“Without that money, it would be very difficult to run that program,” Hansel said. “It’s very nice that we have that, to support that financially.”

Specifically, the funds will provide for ongoing costs such as necessary equipment and transporting students to games.

“It all goes toward making that possible,” Hansel said.

The $60,000 the grant provides is a significant amount for the district, Hansel said.

“The funds to support our activity fund and athletic programming come entirely from the community in the form of admissions to the events and donations and fundraisers,” he said. “None of the other district money we have is available to fund that programming, so it comes entirely from local sources.”

He added, “Any type of grant funding we can receive is very much a benefit.

Hansel said the district is honored by the grant.

“This is fantastic,” he said. “Our community is fortunate to have a patron like Mr. Pontius who wanted to leave a legacy of ongoing support for the district. We’re very delighted, very honored, to utilize those funds in a manner we think he would be very happy with.”