Don E. and Charlotte Williams Scholarship

 

Don and Charlotte Williams loved to give. Once on his birthday, Don surprised co-workers by giving them envelopes with $10 bills inside.

Another time, when Don and Charlotte were dining in a local restaurant, a group of teenagers were at a nearby table, all dressed up for prom night. Don and Charlotte paid the tab for the entire table, giving the young people a night to remember.

Don and Charlotte are both gone now, but an endowed scholarship they established continues to give young people a boost when they need it most. They have made an impact on the lives of students in the area, and two of their scholarship recipients, Lindsay and Ryan Koresko, can testify to that.

Lindsay and Ryan’s father, Donald, passed away from complications of ALS. Ryan was in fifth grade; Lindsay was in eighth grade. It’s never easy to recover from such a loss. The children and their mother, Joydene, had to work together to keep going. After struggling to care for Donald during his illness, Joydene now took on the challenge of a single-parent household. “Lindsay and I had to become adults,” Ryan says.

Both Lindsay and Ryan put their heads down and focused at school. The hard work paid off. In different years, both were awarded the Don E. and Charlotte Williams Scholarship. The scholarship is renewable each year of college (for a maximum of four years) as long as the students maintain their grades.

“We did the numbers,” Ryan says, “and it would have been a lot harder to go to school without the scholarship. It meant a lot less pressure, and less debt to pay off in student loans.”

Lindsay graduated from college and is now employed by United Healthcare. Ryan graduated from Monmouth College and plans to be a teacher.

Joydene Koresko says, “I think the kids got me through this. They both get a lot from their dad, especially his work ethic. I’m very proud of them.”

Ryan and Lindsay are very grateful for the scholarships, and Lindsay wants to pay it forward by developing her own nonprofit event – an ALS Walk in the Quad Cities area.

Don and Charlotte Williams would approve.

"Having a strong endowment helps to ensure that the German Ameican Heritage Center is here for future generations to learn from and enjoy."

Read more

Refer a friend to us

Know someone who would benefit from the expertise of our financial professionals at the Community Foundation? Refer them to us now!

Did You Know?

The Community Foundation made its first grant from the Community Impact Endowment in 1967. That grant, of $2,000, was funded by an estate gift from Bea Conrad.
Read more