Administrators sitting at a conference table

A screening committee that will ultimately lead to the creation of the Nacogdoches ISD Education Foundation met on Dec. 7 at the District Support Center.

The committee includes NISD Superintendent Dr. Gabriel Trujillo, City of Nacogdoches Mayor Jimmy Mize, NISD Trustee Mindy Winslow and NISD Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Les Linebarger. Erin Windham, the district’s coordinator for the Parent & Patron Assistance Center, will serve as Executive Director of the foundation.

The meeting served as the start to a year-long process of establishing the foundation that will include obtaining tax-exempt status from the IRS and fulfilling other state and federal requirements to constitute a 501(c)(3) corporation. The steering committee also represents the beginning of naming a board of directors that will ultimately guide the foundation’s formation and direction in the coming months.

Foundation Innovation, a Buda, Texas-based firm, is guiding the district’s work in establishing the foundation.

The foundation will be able to accept contributions that can fund a number of initiatives within the district, such as grants to teachers and staff that would pay for innovative projects to benefit NISD students.

“There are a number of benefits this will provide,” Trujillo said. “It will pay for grants provided for teachers who have some wonderful ideas for their classrooms.

“It’s not uncommon for teachers to pay for these initiatives out of their own pocket, and creation of a foundation would lead to an application and funding process for some of the new things they want to try.”

NISD’s Board of Trustees adopted a resolution in July clearing the way for the education foundation.

Over the next few months, the steering committee will meet to complete the submission of applications to fulfill the requirements of state and federal agencies. The committee will also begin to consider how a board of directors will be organized, which when completed, will lead to the creation and adoption of bylaws and the organizational framework for the foundation.

“These are exciting times for NISD,” Trujillo said. “Establishing a foundation to accept tax-free donations is another step in the right direction for the district.”