Chehalis Foundation West/Coffman Scholarship
Establishing a Tradition of Community Giving
The Chehalis Foundation Scholarship program began in 2001 as the Chehalis Dollars for Scholars. Four W. F. West High School graduates from the Class of 1965: Rene Remund, Bob Spahr, Diane Rasmusson, and Linda Smith, suggested to their classmates that instead of charging for their reunions they could donate to scholarships for deserving W. F. West graduates. The class held their reunions every five years, but since 2010 they have been meeting every year. The first year, the Class of ’65 raised $4000 and presented four scholarships to students in the Class of 2001. The next year it was five scholarships. Since 2001, the Class of ’65 has been able to help five to eight students each year.
Other alumni have stepped up to help our students further their education after high school. The Class of ’63, the Class of ’55, which is now the Classes of the ‘50s, and numerous community members have endowed scholarships in memory of family and to honor community leaders.
In 2014, we were offered the opportunity to join the Chehalis Foundation and are now an integral part of their mission. With their help, we are able to offer more scholarship opportunities for W. F. West High School graduates.
Over 20 years ago, a dedicated and forward thinking group of Chehalis community members and alumni established the Chehalis Foundation. The mission of the Chehalis Foundation is to support projects that benefit the city, the community and academic excellence in Chehalis schools. The Chehalis Foundation’s purpose is to better the quality of life within our community.
In 2016, the Chehalis Foundation assumed the stewardship of the W. F. West and Coffman Scholarships. Since 1968, for the West Scholarships, and 1972 for the Coffman Scholarships, over 2500 students have benefited from these two families’ belief in the importance of helping young adults succeed in career and college endeavors after high school. Today the Chehalis Foundation is committed to extending that legacy. Part of the work of the Chehalis Foundation is to raise funds for scholarships, and to increase the number of scholarships presented annually.
These scholarships are given in recognition of the benefits many have experienced growing up in Chehalis, including the connections of family, friends, teachers and community members who have helped us along the way. Each year, the Chehalis Foundation is pleased to award scholarships on behalf of individuals and groups in our community.