Greater Pine Belt Community Foundation honored with national accreditation

Greater Pine Belt Community Foundation honored with national accreditation
(Source: WDAM Staff)
(Source: WDAM Staff)

HATTIESBURG, MS (Mississippi News Now) - The one and only community foundation serving the Pine Belt is proud to have proof that their work is doing exactly what it's supposed to.

The Greater Pine Belt Community Foundation is now accredited with the nation's highest standard for giving back.

The community is serving the Pine Belt and taking an extra step to ensure the integrity and trustworthiness of the foundation.

"It really shows that we are committed to being an excellent and credible and transparent community foundation and
we're the only one that serves this area," said
Theresa Erickson, the Executive Director of the Greater Pine Belt Community Foundation.

The foundation was ecstatic to find they had met National Standards for U.S. Community Foundation.

"Oh my goodness, when I heard that we were an accredited foundation, I literally started screaming in the office!" Erickson said.

In simple words, the foundation passed the test of holding true to legal, ethical, and effective practices.

"We've worked on this really hard. It has been a tough, tough, tough, process. It was a lot of work and it was just so exciting," Erickson said.

"We started the process five years-ago," said
David Fortenberry, the President of the Board.  

It took dedication like, "...writing policies, changing policies, adding policies," said Fortenberry.  

"It was like eating an elephant one bite at a time. Just working on it one day at a time. Little here and a little there," Erickson said.

The foundation hopes that stamp of approval encourages people to continue to pour into a foundation that pours into the Pine Belt. 

"I think it will really pay off for our foundation, but mostly it will pay off for our community," Erickson said.

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