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News & Happenings

Ribbon Cutting at FAO’s New Office

Foundation for Appalachian Ohio Opens

New Office In Renovated Peoples Bank

Building on Nelsonville Public Square


Peoples Bank Donates Building to the Foundation


Nelsonville, OH On Friday, June 29, the Foundation for Appalachian Ohioofficially opened its new offices at 35 Public Square with a ribbon cuttingceremony. The ceremony honored former Peoples Bank CEO and Chairman Bob Evans,a founding Board member for FAO, and celebrated the many partners who made thisnew space possible through their contributions of time, expertise, and craft.

A cornerstone of the Nelsonville Public Square since 1910,the Peoples Bank building on the corner of Washington Street was home toPeoples Bank until 2009 when it moved to a new location in Nelsonville. Seeingan asset they could contribute to the community, Peoples Bank, NationalAssociation donated the building to the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio tofulfill its needs for expanded office space. The generous gift launched acollaboration of partners from across the region to support FAO in thedevelopment of its new office space.

“The opening of this new office space is a landmarkoccasion for the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio. Expanding our office spacewill allow FAO to continue its development of partnerships across the region toenrich quality of life,” said Cara Dingus Brook, president and CEO of theFoundation. “And it is only because of the support of so many partnersthat today was possible.”

In addition to Peoples Bank and Bob Evans, the ceremonycelebrated I’m a Child of Appalachia honoree Mike Brooks and his wifePam Brooks for their personal contribution to FAO’s renovation efforts as wellas the dedicated time they gave to assisting FAO. Other partners included theRocky Community Improvement Fund, Rocky Brands’ fund devoted to enhancing thequality of life of the people of Nelsonville and the surrounding communities,which contributed the first $10,000 to the project to ensure the Foundationwould be able to renovate the building without detracting from its mission. TheGovernor’s Office of Appalachia also contributed to the renovation through a$250,000 Rapid Response Grant. Following the ribbon cutting, Columbus law firmBricker & Eckler, LLP’s significant contribution of in-kind services wasrecognized through the dedication of a conference room to remember what theirgenerosity made possible. The renovation of the space was led by RVC Architectsof Athens.

“The partners assembled here today are evidence of whatcan happen when a community and a region come together,” added Brook.”Without these partners FAO could not have opened this space and continuedits mission work. We are stronger as a community foundation because of thepartners in our region and we look forward to serving Appalachian Ohiotogether.”

About the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio

The Foundation for Appalachian Ohio is a regional community foundation serving the 32 counties of Appalachian Ohio with the mission of enriching the region’s current and future quality of life. A 501(c)(3) public charity, the Foundation attracts contributions for programs and endowment, makes grants for charitable and civic purposes, and supports local efforts for positive change. For more information about FAO, visit