Clemmons Foundation announces name change to the Shallow Ford Foundation

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 17, 2021

New name reflects larger area served and mission.

The Clemmons Community Foundation has announced it will be changing its name to the Shallow Ford Foundation, effective July 1. Founded by the Clemmons Rotary Club in 2004 as the Clemmons Rotary Foundation, its leaders converted to the Clemmons Community Foundation in 2012. Since 2018 and based on the guidance of its contributors, the foundation’s service area expanded beyond Clemmons to include Lewisville, Yadkin County and north Davidson County with its grants and scholarships. The new name is inspired by a historically-renowned shallow location on the Yadkin River that was used to cross the river between Forsyth and Yadkin counties. The name better reflects the broader geography served by the foundation, honors the area’s heritage, and reflects the foundation’s mission of connecting community and local philanthropy to achieve lasting outcomes.

Lewisville Mayor Mike Horn offers, “Historically significant, the shallow ford crossing at the Yadkin River was a key link on the Great Wagon Road traveled by settlers migrating from the northeast to the south. Appropriately, the name Shallow Ford reflects the connection among the communities served by the foundation.”

Tim Bell, 2021-2022 foundation board chair and leader of the branding committee, comments on the new name: “We needed a name that represented what we were already doing. The board loves this new name because it also tells a story…a story much like the foundation of helping connect hopes and dreams to opportunity with lasting outcomes. Our grants and scholarships make possible the hopes and dreams of the communities and individuals served by the awards. We’re very excited to announce a name that better represents our donors, the hearts and goals of our incredible communities, and reflects our foundation’s mission and values.”     

Donors and partner organizations were informed of the name change and agree. Donna Bingham Merriman, daughter of Thad and Mary Bingham who established an endowment fund with the foundation in 2015, shared her thoughts. “The foundation has been a blessing to our family and our interest in Clemmons. It’s not about the name, it’s about the work they do. We know that won’t change and we like that they kept a name that is well known in this part of the county.”

Bobby Todd, executive director of the Yadkin County Economic Development Partnership and Yadkin Chamber of Commerce also commented. “We love it. It’s the perfect name and it will be received well by our county leaders.” Yadkin County Schools Superintendent Dr. Todd Martin adds, “The name change makes sense. The foundation has been such a special partner with YCS over the past several years. Their leaders have been present and engaged in serving our students and we are very grateful to the Shore family for the programming resources. I believe this name change reflects a continuing commitment to those who the foundation serves in Forsyth County as well as the students and citizens of Yadkin County.”

Current Board Chair Maria P. Vernon comments on the board’s decision: “We are known to energetically serve the intentions and goals of our contributors. Their philanthropic goals are often serving communities and needs beyond Clemmons. With all our work and programming in Lewisville and especially Yadkin County over the past few years, the new name is more inclusive of the communities where we focus our services. It’s an exciting name change with a beautiful story that affirms our mission and ongoing work.”

The updated logo maintains the identifiable starburst and adds a water element beneath the starburst. The soon-to-be-named Shallow Ford Foundation stewards $16.5 million in assets through 36 funds named and established by donors. Its key programs include the Community Grants program in Clemmons and Lewisville, the Shore Community Grants program and the Shore Scholars Program in Yadkin County, the Salem Glen College Assistance Program and many other named scholarships in Clemmons, Lewisville, Yadkin County, and north Davidson County. The foundation’s new website, which will be unveiled July 1, is www.ShallowFordFoundation.org.    

Those interested in further information can contact Sandi Scannelli, president/CEO, at 336-407-3460 or sandi@clemmonsfoundation.org .