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Sterling-Rock Falls
Community Trust


Our Vision is Our Mission

The Vision of the Sterling-Rock Falls Community Trust is to work toward a brighter future for local residents through charitable giving.

Our Mission is to create an opportunity for donors to participate in scholarships and projects that improve the quality of life within our local communities.

Our Objectives are: charitable, benevolent, civic, educational and ethical.

When you invest in the Sterling-Rock Falls Community Trust, you ensure that your gift will make a real difference where you can see the results.


We Know the Community

Seven trustees serve five-year terms on the Community Trust. Trustees are appointed by the Sauk Valley Area Chamber of Commerce, Rock Falls Chamber of Commerce, Whiteside County Bar Association, Midland States Bank and U.S. Bank.

Mary Ellen Wilkinson MARY ELLEN


Peter Dillon PETER

Vice President

Rock Gentry ROCK


Elizabeth Klahn ELIZABETH


Robbie Minor ROBBIE


Sheila Martinez SHEILA


Suzy Perino SUZY


We Help You Achieve Superior Tax Benefits

Reorganized as a public foundation in 2006, we are a tax-exempt organization as determined by the Internal Revenue Service. In most cases, donating through the Sterling-Rock Falls Community Trust is less costly than establishing your own private foundation.

We Conduct Thoughtful Oversight

The Board of Trustees meets regularly to oversee distributions from the Trust and to determine future beneficiaries of grants. We are audited on an annual basis and issue periodic reports. Financial statements may be requested by contacting Sterling-Rock Falls Community Trust, Midland States Bank, 4404 East Lincolnway, Sterling, IL 61081; 815-285-5185.

We Are a Public Foundation

A sizable annual distribution of two-thirds of the interest and dividend income from the Lucile Sudbury Charitable Trust at the Northern Trust Company prompted the Community Trust to change its status from a “Private Foundation” to a “Public Foundation” in 2006. In keeping with the requirements of the IRS and the growing need of our local scholars and community, the Community Trust needs to continue to broaden our base of public support. Successful yearly appeals will guarantee a substantial new stream of additional funds from the Sudbury Trust for area scholarships and community projects for the foreseeable future.

How We Began

The Community Trust was created on April 10, 1968, through the will of Dr. John L. Snavely who lived and worked his entire life in the Sterling-Rock Falls community. He left a portion of his estate to benefit the people of the community. In keeping with Dr. Snavely’s intent, the first Board of Trustees established the mission of the Sterling-Rock Falls Community Trust to encourage students to continue their education beyond high school and to support programs that enhance the quality of life here in the Sauk Valley. The original trustees were: W. J. Sowles, Karl W. Wentsel, Alex Haglund, David Laughlin, W. Martin Dillon, John F. Wahl, Charles Koehler.

Local donors have added to the scholarship and community funds managed by the Trust. Over the last 50 years, these generous donors have made it possible to award thousands of scholarships and hundreds of grants to students, local community programs and charitable organizations.