Hilary Canty to retire from Community Foundation

Submitted by the Orcas Island Community Foundation.

The Orcas Island Community Foundation Board President Angela Foster announced the upcoming retirement of Executive Director Hilary Canty.

“We are fortunate Hilary shared 17 years of her life with OICF. She helped build a strong and vibrant organization and will continue to serve and assist us in finding a new executive director to lead this incredible organization.”

Founded in 1995, OICF’s mission is to “foster philanthropy to enhance and preserve the quality of life on Orcas Island.”

OICF efforts are focused on supporting the needs of the Orcas Island Community, strengthening the social safety net, expanding arts and education opportunities, and supporting environmental stewardship. This is accomplished through grant funding, board leadership education, organizational development, network building and community engagement.

This work is only possible with the support of hundreds of community members who contribute financially and volunteer for the local nonprofits that provide vital services for all of Orcas.

Under Canty’s leadership, annual grant-making facilitated by OICF has grown from $70,000 in 2012 to over $6 million in 2023. In 2013 OICF launched GiveOrcas, a twice-a-year, community-wide, participatory granting effort that provides significant support to vital programs serving the Orcas community. In 2023, over 1000 donors contributed through GiveOrcas resulting in $837,000 in grants to 32 local nonprofits.

Using GiveOrcas as a guiding backbone, OICF opened a Community Emergency Response Fund in March of 2020, providing a central collection and distribution point for community needs throughout the pandemic.

OICF coordinated weekly check-in calls for all service providers and encouraged a collaborative response to the crisis. In the three years of crisis response, $2.5 million was distributed to a wide variety of programs providing safety net services.

The Foundation currently stewards over $24 million in 185 funds for the community. These include donor advised funds, permanently and temporarily restricted designated funds for organizations, scholarships and a wide variety of field of interest funds. The Foundation is forever thankful for the trust such donors have in the OICF operation.

The Community Foundation has been a catalyst for collaborative initiatives such as the Dental Van program, Early Childhood Education Initiative and Reproductive Health Initiative, all launched during Canty’s tenure.

This past year OICF facilitated the purchase of the Pea Patch property which will become a community campus for services, classes and housing.

The OICF Board is dedicated to finding a great next director to continue to build on the phenomenal foundation that has been laid.

For further information or confidential inquiry, please contact Jack Groban at jack@jackgroban.com.