Donor Spotlight

Donor Spotlight

Jo Ellen Diehl Yeary | Generosity rooted in pride, remembrance, dedication to home

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Ora Anderson Conservation Fund


Naturalist Ora “Andy” Anderson was a keen observer of nature and people. He was passionate about conservation and committed to preserving and enhancing the natural beauty of Appalachian Ohio. Anderson’s dedication dates back to the 1930s when he was a young reporter and newspaper editor covering the establishment of the Wayne National Forest. He shared insights and joys of nature with generations of children and adults alike as he hosted visitors to his tree farm (one of the oldest in Ohio), demonstrated his bird carving and storytelling expertise in local classrooms, and was a regular guest on radio broadcasts well into his 90’s.

For seventy years he was a tireless advocate for conservation in the region. He served as president of the Ohio Forestry Association and board chairman of the Nature Conservancy in Ohio, helped establish nature preserves, and advised public officials and fellow nature lovers. Before he passed away at age 94 in 2006, he had authored dozens of essays and poems in addition to being an expert woodcarver of the birds he saw. He was posthumously inducted into the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Hall of Fame, which is the state’s highest conservation honor.

The seeds of something larger than ourselves. 

What began in 2007 as a modest “acorn” fund of $6,000 started by a handful of admirers of Ora Anderson, has grown into a healthy “seedling” fund of more than $160,000, as others have contributed time and treasure to invest in our region’s future. We invite you to help nurture this fund to help provide a permanent source of charitable funding for conservation activities and programs in the areas of watershed restoration, sustainable forest practices, and promotion of the region’s cultural and environmental history.

Gifts can be made to this fund in the form of cash, appreciated stocks, real estate or other assets.  All gifts are added to the endowment as a permanent source of community capital that promotes environmental conservation in the Appalachian region.

The Fund’s advisory committee is responsible for making distribution recommendations that are actively carrying out Anderson’s vision of preserving and enhancing the natural beauty of our region.

Make an online donation to the Ora E. Anderson Conservation Fund or contact the Foundation at 740-753-1111. Please visit the Ora E. Anderson Conservation Fund webpage to learn more about the life of Ora E. Anderson and his work to preserve the natural beauty of the region for future generations.