Donor Spotlight

Donor Spotlight

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Shirley McClelland | The McClelland Fund

mcclellandShirley McClelland
The McClelland Fund

That’s philanthropy to me – it’s about giving what you have and sharing what you know.
– Shirley McClelland, Donor Advisor

At the end of 2011, Shirley McClelland of Lancaster, Ohio, opened a donor-advised fund with FAO to make a difference in Appalachian Ohio and beyond. Not long after, she visited the FAO office to share a little bit more about herself and her charitable dreams.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself…
A: I’m a yoga teacher from Lancaster, Ohio, an organic gardener, farm wife, and mother. Those are a few of the hats I wear.

Q: What are some of your favorite organizations or causes to support?
A: I’m very interested in conserving and protecting the environment and in women’s issues. I have a strong affinity for causes in Central and South America, having spent quite a bit of time down there. Local causes are also important to me, especially in supporting education and the arts. I guess I’m pretty well-rounded in my giving. Those are the areas that really speak to me.

Q: Has giving (back) been a part of your life for a long time? A tradition?
A: In some ways yes, but not financially. I have been someone who would volunteer to do things with my time and talent. I never had the resources to invest a lot of money, but a little bit of money and a lot of love can go a long way when it comes to something that you care about. And now I have the opportunity to do both so that’s exciting.

Q: What made a donor-advised fund most interesting to you in terms of how you’d like to partner with the Foundation?
A: I think it’s an ideal partnership in many ways because I can continue to explore my passions for giving and the things that are important to me. I have the expertise of the Foundation, but I still feel like I have the opportunity to be self-expressive. I wasn’t signing away everything and making it a one-time gift that would stop. I feel like I can continue to be involved and probably more involved than I would have been if I had just written a check… It’s a wonderful opportunity to go a little deeper in the giving process.

Q: What would you say philanthropy means to you?
A: Giving back. Because we don’t get to choose where we were born or our situation so if you were fortunate enough to have something to share I think you should. I teach yoga and try to encourage people toward wellness as a way to repay the gift of health that I’ve been given.… Financially, it’s the same thing. If you’ve been given financial gifts, it’s your job to spread it around – give some back and share. That’s philanthropy to me – it’s about giving what you have and sharing what you know.

Contact the Foundation to learn more about donor-advised funds.