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Ron Keas


The Lake County Silver Foundation is a non-profit organization founded on three main principles in support of our senior population:

  • Recognize the historical and continuing value of elders to the community as a foundation of the present and touchstone for a future path.

  • Recognize that many seniors have significant gaps in their health and welfare and provide 1) a conduit between seniors and existing support services and 2) develop new grants and gifts to support seniors and service entities.

  • Provide a method for those who wish to leave a legacy for the oldest generation.

The Board of Directors will enact this vision through communications, conferences, projects and programs.


Jim Steele, Founder & President   |  Olga Steele, Co-Founder & Secretary

Rena Grove, Treasurer  |  Claudine Pedroncelli, Project Manager

Rae Eby-Carl | Dr. Bob Gardner  |  Sam Euston  |  Bernadine Tripp  |  Joyce Overton

Rest In Peace: Gene Paleno, Nick Baker, Paul Branson

EIN: 82-2888820 | DLN: 17053307326037 | CCN: 4012027 Status: 170(b) (1) (A) (vi)

  • Develop and implement funding strategies that will gain gifts, grants and donations to support seniors in need, services needed by seniors; senior centers and other senior support organizations.

  • Promote the foundation as a way for seniors to leave a legacy, by specifying how their endowment gifts can be used.

  • Develop granting applications that fund senior facility improvements and activities for seniors that will enrich their lives.

  • Plan and administer an annual senior conference that promotes respect for elders from all generations.

  • Promote a conference for the lake County elder population that provides a conduit between seniors and existing support services.

  • Develop activities and opportunities for seniors at the conference to provide value to their lives and develop a survey for this purpose.


Q. Why is the Silver Foundation needed in Lake County?

A.  The Foundation was formed to address the gap between what what government can and cannot provide in support of a growing senior population as well as what non-profit services can deliver.

Seniors are the fastest growing segment of population in Lake County at ~30 percent. Many elders live on low and fixed incomes and struggle to meet today’s higher costs for food, housing and utilities and other essentials. Some rely completely on government subsidies, community food donations and pets for companions. The growing elder population is often found in substandard housing exposed to surrounding poverty and crime with limited transportation in low shopping opportunity areas. The ability to find recreational outlets and companionship is often a challenge. The Public Safety Power Shut offs and fire protection needs of seniors is as added burden.


Q. Does the County fund Senior Centers for these benefits?

A.  Senior centers are nonprofit organizations run by Boards of Directors. 


They exist to provide meals and other services in their respective local areas.  The county supports some buildings used by the centers and the Area Agency on Aging provides basic meal support. The Silver Foundation has conducted surveys of seniors at an annual conference to determine if seniors use these facilities and what is needed.  


Q. What was found by these surveys?

A. The Senior Centers are used by some seniors surveyed but the youngest senior population found the centers difficult to get to, were not relevant to their generation and didn’t offer services they wanted. Many of the older seniors lacked transportation or were not inclined to attend the centers. Isolation is a growing problem and the latest challenges of power outages and fire evacuations exact a significant physical and mental toll.


Q. What programs has the Lake County Silver Foundation developed?

A.  There are two specific programs thus far: The Annual Senior Summit and the “Help A Senior – Save A Pet.”

Annual Senior Summit:  This project is possible through sponsorships from various organizations.  It has grown in popularity since inception; each year the number of participants grows. More than 350 seniors attended the 3rd Annual Summit – some had to be turned away to to limited space.  The event is a one-day conference and health & wellness fair featuring Inspirational Senior Awards, Lunch, Keynote Speaker and more. 

Help A Senior – Save A Pet:  This project is possible through a grant from 100+ Women Strong.  The program supports seniors with their pet car needs.


Q. When did the Silver Foundation become operational?

A. The lake County Silver Foundation became operational upon receiving state and federal designations as a non-profit entity and obtaining tax exempt status in 2016.  The Foundation Board members are listed below.   

Q. What are the requirements to serve on the Board of Directors?

A. The ideal Board member has strong ties to and is an influential member of the community, has the passion and ability to raise funds, and can influence others to support the goals of the Silver Foundation.

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