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Press Release

Date: January 17, 2014

Jerry Mathiasen, Senior Vice President

Iowa West Foundation Announces $4.3 Million in Grants for Fourth Quarter

(Council Bluffs, IA) The Iowa West Foundation, which is headquartered in Council Bluffs (Pottawattamie County, IA), has announced nearly $4.3 million in grants for the fourth quarter of 2013. The grants will be used to assist 32 non-profit organizations and governmental entities with funding for area projects.

“Economic development and education are two of the Iowa West Foundation’s top strategic focus areas, and our grants in those areas came to the forefront this round,” said Pete Tulipana, President and CEO of the Iowa West Foundation. “The largest grant award is for the creation and operation of Advance Southwest Iowa, a partnership with the Greater Omaha Economic Development Partnership. We also continue two of our key education initiatives, Iowa West Opportunity Scholarships and the College Access Program.”

Tulipana highlighted the Foundation’s role as both a “convener” and a “funder” of Advance Southwest Iowa, a unique public-private partnership including the City of Council Bluffs, the Council Bluffs Area Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Omaha Economic Development Partnership, the Iowa West Foundation, Pottawattamie County, and the Western Iowa Development Association. Iowa West’s grant is for $2.2 million over the next five years.

“This is an important step for the success of economic development in the region,” added Tulipana. “In these changing times, success in economic development is enhanced through regional cooperation.”

In the focus area of education, the Iowa West Foundation will continue to fund two of its own initiatives, which were announced in 2009—the Iowa West Opportunity Scholarship Program and the College Access Program (CAP). The 2014 scholarships will be funded with $495,000, and CAP with $345,000. Both programs are designed to assist local high school students, who might not otherwise go to college.

“Programs such as these are making a difference here and across the nation,” said Tulipana, “and the Iowa West Foundation Board wants to continue to help youth who aspire to achieve higher education.”

There are 25 scholarships available for high school seniors attending school in Pottawattamie County. They are for $16,000 over four years. The program is administered by the Iowa College Foundation. For more information on the criteria and how to apply for Iowa West Opportunity Scholarships visit

CAP includes such components as assistance with financial aid, college placement test preparation, campus visits, and academic planning. The program is for four years beginning in ninth grade, and is available for students attending Council Bluffs Abraham Lincoln High School and Council Bluffs Thomas Jefferson High School. It is administered by the AIM Institute. For more information, contact a counselor at those two schools.

Funding for the Foundation’s grants comes from the investment earnings and the Iowa West Racing Association (IWRA), which receives contracted license fees from casino operators, Ameristar and Harrah’s. IWRA distributes funds to the Iowa West Foundation—an independent 501(c)(3) organization under the IRS Code. The Foundation makes grants throughout southwest Iowa and eastern Nebraska.

Requests for Iowa West grant applications for the second quarter of 2014 will begin March 1, 2014, and will be accepted through April 1, 2014. Completed applications will be due April 15, 2014. The deadline to request applications for the first quarter has passed.

For more information including deadlines, interested organizations may visit the Foundation’s website at or contact Deb Debbaut, Director of Grants Administration, at 712-309-3003. Guidelines and procedures can be viewed on the website, and applicants can apply online. (A listing of grant recipients and their projects is attached for your reference.)

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2013 Fourth Quarter Grants:

African Culture Connection
Summer residency program at three Council Bluffs schools

Ballet Nebraska
Performance at Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs

Bluffs Arts Council
General operating support for 2014

Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska - Omaha
Arts education for southwest Iowa teachers

Buena Vista University
"Telepresence" for Council Bluffs site

Center for the Advancement of Self-Sufficiency Incorporated
Technology upgrades for Atlantic facility serving the disabled

City of Corning
Computers for patrons and staff at library

City of Red Oak
Implementation of downtown revitalization plan

CommonBond Communities
"Wabash Place" - affordable housing complex in south Council Bluffs

Downtown Omaha, Inc. Foundation
Holiday Lights Festival

Food Bank for the Heartland
"Weekend Food for Kids" in Omaha metro area

Girl Scouts of Greater Iowa Inc.
Outreach and operating support for Council Bluffs office

Girls Incorporated of Omaha
Renovation of "North Center" facility

Greater Omaha Chamber Foundation
The "Advance Southwest Iowa" collaboration

Green Hills Area Education Agency
Planning for a career technical institute in southwest Iowa

Summer leadership academies in southwest Iowa

Heartland Family Service
HEAT 2014 emergency assistance for families in Pottawattamie County

Indian Creek Historical Society and Museum
Restoration of barn for museum near Emerson

Iowa West Foundation Initiatives
College Access Program (CAP) administered by AIM Institute

Iowa West Opportunity Scholarships administered by the Iowa College Foundation

Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska, Inc.
Pottawattamie County treatment program for families affected by child abuse

Mills County Conservation
Construction of a new nature and education center

Mills County Public Health
"Family Matters" drug abuse recovery project

Omaha Botanical Center, Inc.
Railroad Days 2014 - a collaborative regional celebration

Omaha Children's Museum
Renovation of the museum's "Grocery Store" area

Omaha Symphony Association
"Adventures in Music" for southwest Iowa students

Opera Omaha
Opportunities for local students to attend "Cinderella"

Outlook Nebraska, Inc.
Expansion of education center for blind/visually impaired in Omaha metro

Southwest Iowa Nature Trails, Inc.
Maintenance equipment for the Wabash Trace

Ted E. Bear Hollow, Inc.
Outreach of grieving services into Council Bluffs schools

The Danish Immigrant Museum
Curatorial Center addition with "green roof " at museum in Elk Horn

The Durham Museum
"The 1968 Exhibit" - traveling exhibition in Omaha metro area

The Nature Conservancy
Fire management education for the Loess Hills of western Iowa

Vocational Development Center, Inc.
Expansion of building and services for the disabled in Council Bluffs

Youth Emergency Services, Inc.
Homeless services for Omaha-Council Bluffs youth

TOTAL: $4,278,881

OUR VISION is a community where families choose to
live, and businesses choose to locate, because of its
quality of life and standard of living.

Iowa West Foundation    |    25 Main Place, Suite 550    |    Council Bluffs, Iowa    |    712-309-3000