January 2020

Published January 22, 2020


What a decade we have had. What we have achieved together is impressive! The last 10 years went by quickly, so let’s revisit the impact of our work in the City of Chehalis.


We were able to make tennis an “after sunset” sport! We contributed to the resurfacing, re-fencing, and lighting for the aging and crumbling community tennis courts located on the campus of W.F. West High School.

2013-current: Chehalis Foundation College Scholarship Program

The Chehalis Foundation began awarding college scholarships to W.F. West High School graduates in the class of 2013. Through the class of 2019 we have now awarded a total of $407,000. In 2018 Chehalis Foundation was appointed Trustee for the West and Coffman Scholarship Trust funds. Due to better management, the number of new scholarships granted has risen from 25 in previous years to 63 this year with a total of $388,000 awarded. As a result of our program there are over 100 W.F. West High School grads attending college or career training today.

2014: Gail and Carolyn Shaw Aquatic Center 

We raised over $2M from benefactors, businesses, and community, and helped with the update of our community pool. We now have state of the art swim facilities, play areas, pool house changing room and community gathering spaces. Between the pool and spray park we serve over 60,000 visitors each year that come from all over SW Washington.

2015: W.F. West High School Baseball Field and Scoreboard

Chehalis Foundation matched funds for upgrading W.F. West High School’s Bearcat Baseball Stadium and replaced a failing and outdated scoreboard so it continues to be one of the finest high school baseball facilities in the NW.

2011-current:  Chehalis Foundation funded the launch of the Student Achievement Initiative (SAI) in partnership with the school district and Centralia College.  The progress has been astonishing:

  • Since the SAI, Chehalis graduation rates have increased from state average 78% to 95% for both the classes of 2018 and 2019.  Graduates entering college or vocational programs beyond high school has risen from 35% to 73% for the class of 2018.
  • The goal overall is to move from a national average 30% of graduates going on to earn a credential beyond high school to 60% by the class of 2022.  Why? Because most family wage jobs today require more than a high school degree.
  • The STEM programs created at W.F. West are some of the best in country. University of Washington and UW Medicine choose one high school to partner with for their summer STEM camp – W.F. West.
  • The SAI has become a nationally recognized effort that is changing the lives and future opportunities for all Chehalis students.

2018-2019Penny Playground and Recreation Park Baseball Field Complex

$2.4M dollars raised of the $4.4M budget for two specific projects in Recreation Park. The new state of the art Penny Playground will become the most significant ADA park in the region.  And the renovation of the four Rec Park Ballfields and sports complex provides quality playing fields for our teams and the return of youth sports tourism to Chehalis. This will bring an anticipated annual revenue of $1M to the city. Both projects are scheduled to be completed this Spring.

There is much more to accomplish, but sometimes we want to just take a minute to reflect and appreciate the hard work we have all done so far. It is a huge undertaking and you can learn more details on our projects at ChehalisFoundation.org.


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