The GREA Foundation was established in 1996 by the Georgia Retired Educators Association (GREA) to provide outreach programs to the community, support continuing education and life-long learning, and enhance and foster volunteerism.
Past projects of the GRE Foundation have included a) Professional development, b) Leadership training for volunteers, c) Retirement planning, d) Information dissemination, and e) Projects to improve communities, but at present, the project of the GRE Foundation is scholarships for certified and active Georgia educators.
The number of scholarships started with one $500 scholarship but has increased with time and funds until the 2020 year when 18 $750 scholarships were rewarded. The funds for these scholarships came from donations by local units, the GREA Silent Auction, contributions from individual members, and interest earned by the GRE Foundation on their investment. The donations from local units are a way for retired educators to support and recognize active educators.
An effort is made each year to ensure that the winners come from all areas of the state. The number and amount of each scholarship are determined each year by the funds available.
The GRE Foundation Board comprises 12 members that represent the State of Georgia. The state is divided into six regions, three GREA areas each. Each region is represented by 2 GREA members who are also members of the Foundation Board. Region one (areas 1-3) has Keith Lee and Marsha Bond as representatives; Region two (areas 4-6) Dr. Tommie and Juanita Fuller; Region three (7-9) Rita Marable and Patricia Bassett; Region 4 (areas 10-12) James Haymans and Barbara Wilcher; Regions 5 (areas 13-15) Dr. Larry Johnson and Deloris Mullins; Region six (areas 16-18) Vivian Teasley and Dr. Bill Gardner.
The members of the Board are on the Board as long as they are physically able and willing to attend. The officers are elected for a three-year term. The present term ends at the State Convention in 2025. The officers now serving are Barbara Wilcher-chairperson, James Haymans-vice chairperson, Marsha Bond-secretary, Dr. William Gardner-treasurer, and Deloris Mullins-assistant treasurer/parliamentarian.
The Board meets three times each year. The first meeting is the second Tuesday in September at the State Office; the second meeting is the second Tuesday in February in the Macon area, and the last meeting of the year is at the annual convention. (With Covid, the meetings have been by phone, email, and letter.) Each member serves at their own expense.
We are asking local units and individuals to continue their support of the Foundation. It is a 501(c)(3) organization, and all donations are tax-deductible. In Honor or In Memory donations are greatly appreciated.