Grace Academy Creates Endowment Fund

Grace Academy recently established the Grace Academy Endowment Fund at the Community Foundation. This fund was started with a number of financial gifts from current and former Grace Academy families.

Grace Academy Financial Manager, Chad Wingert, left, presents a $5,000 check to Brad Sell, executive director of the Community Foundation.

Serving students since 1976, Grace Academy is a non-denominational private Christian school for grades K3-12. Their ethnically diverse student body of over 310 students comes from 50+ churches representing several different denominations. The mission of Grace Academy is to provide an environment of academic excellence and Biblical teaching that will develop an educated citizen with a Biblical world and life view and a desire to represent Jesus Christ in all walks of life. Grace Academy consists of 25 classrooms, SMARTboard in every classroom, computer and science labs, a large gymnasium, three athletic fields and a playground area. It is located on a thirty-three acre campus west of Hagerstown on Cearfoss Pike.

"Our goal is to build a fund that will someday allow a child who wants an extraordinary education at a small, Christian school without having to worry about financial barriers," said Ken Garber, director of marketing and development at Grace Academy.



Karim Thomas Ziyad Memorial Engineering Scholarship Fund

Meara Dietrick Ziyad recently established the Karim Thomas Ziyad Memorial Engineering Scholarship Fund at The Community Foundation to memorialize her husband, Karim, who passed away on June 15, 2013 at the age of 28.

Born in New York City, Karim grew up in Rabat, Morocco. He graduated from the National Institute of Applied Sciences in Lyon, France with dual master’s degrees in mechanical engineering and design concepts. Karim worked as a mechanical engineer in the innovation department at Manitowoc in Shady Grove, Pennsylvania. He was instrumental in bringing composite technology to the crane industry and became a specialist in rope technology.

Karim moved to Hagerstown in 2008 and was an avid cyclist who loved riding on rural roads throughout the county. He frequently participated in century rides and was a member of the Franklin County Cyclists. A man of diverse hobbies, Karim also enjoyed salsa dancing, capoeira, and reading. He greatly valued education, serving as a judge for a local science fair and encouraging his nephews and nieces to develop a love for learning. Karim will be remembered for his laughter and love for life; drive to constantly challenge himself; his innovation, creativity and integrity; and his devotion to his wife and family.

The Karim Thomas Ziyad Memorial Engineering Scholarship Fund will provide scholarships to deserving students from Washington County or the surrounding area who plan to pursue a career in engineering, with a preference given to the field of mechanical engineering.

Donations can be made in Karim’s memory to the Community Foundation.


  • Washington County Gives on May 6

    April 16, 2014

    The Community Foundation will host its second 24-hour web-based, social-media-driven fundraiser, Washington County Gives, on May 6, 2014. For more information about Washington County Gives or to register, please visit

  • Jon Christopher Gauss, Jr. Scholarship

    April 10, 2014

    The Community Foundation announces the establishment of two scholarships in memory of Jon Christopher Gauss, Jr. who passed away on May 18, 2012 at the age of 22. 

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