December 15, 2020




Grand Forks, ND – In an unprecedented round of funding, the Myra Foundation will award nearly

$725,000 of charity support before the end of the calendar year. An exact total of

$724,846.60 will be distributed to 71 Grand Forks County nonprofit organizations in what will be, by far, the Myra Foundation’s largest funding round in its 79-year history.


The organizations that applied for and received funding this year include schools, health care organizations, rural development groups, social assistance organizations, arts groups, and many more. A complete list of 2020 funding recipients can be found at A common thread weaving through nearly all of this year’s applications was the extreme challenge presented by COVID-19 to these nonprofits and the communities they serve. “As a board, we are very grateful to report a record granting season,” says John Botsford, president of the Myra Foundation, “and what better timing than in 2020, when so many local charities and organizations are experiencing such an unprecedented struggle due to cancellation of projects and events.”


2020 also brought changes to the Myra Foundation itself. After over two decades of service, Donna Gillig has ended her time as a trustee of the Foundation. Her 20+ years of involvement with the Myra Foundation will be appreciated by her successors for many years to come. Botsford adds, “Donna Gillig has served the Foundation for over two decades, and we thank her for her dedicated, selfless service. The Myra Foundation is stronger today because of her contributions.”


Replacing former trustee Donna Gillig is Emily Montgomery, a fifth-generation family farmer in rural Grand Forks who also brings over a decade of nonprofit administration experience. “I have long admired the Myra Foundation and its incredible impact on our community,” says Montgomery. “I am honored to be involved with a Foundation that has its roots in agriculture, and I look forward to serving my community in this new role.” The third trustee position is currently held by Kent Cronquist of Gilby, ND.


Established in 1941, the Myra Foundation was created from the estate of John E. Myra to award grants within Grand Forks County, ND. To date, over $10.6 million in grants have been awarded for charitable, character building, and educational purposes. For more information about the Myra Foundation including a list of the 2020 grant participants, visit

# # #                                                   Updated 12-16-2020