Endowment will honor Marsha Daughenbaugh’s love, passion for agriculture | SteamboatToday.com

Endowment will honor Marsha Daughenbaugh’s love, passion for agriculture

Marsha Daughenbaugh was honored Thursday during a community celebration at the Routt County Courthouse. It was also announced the Community Agriculture Alliance named an endowment fund, that had been around since 2011, the Marsha Daughenbaugh Legacy Endowment for the Community Agriculture Alliance in her honor.

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — When Marsha Daughenbaugh left the offices of the Community Agriculture Alliance in downtown Steamboat Springs on Friday, she left behind a legacy of service to the agricultural community and some of our area's most cherished traditions.

To honor that service, Community Agriculture Alliance held a celebration Thursday that drew nearly 200 people, and has also put her name on an endowment fund that has been around since 2011. The endowment fund will be known as the Marsha Daughenbaugh Legacy Endowment for the Community Agriculture Alliance.

"I had no idea that was going to happen, or that it was in the works," Daughenbaugh said in her final interview as the executive director of the Community Agriculture Alliance in Routt County. "It brought me to tears, and really I couldn't even speak. I was so amazed."

In addition to renaming the endowment fund in her name, Alpine Bank gave a $5,000 donation and the Yampa Valley Community Foundation matched 25 percent of that amount, or $1,250 to the endowment fund.

The community foundation will continue to make the same match for donations to the alliance until it reaches $10,000, or the community foundation program, which was set up to encourage donations to nonprofits, reaches its $100,000 limit.

"We have got some needs that in the future are going to have to be met, and this is going to allow us to have a different conversation than we had before," Daughenbaugh said. "It will allow us to grow, and do some better things for the agricultural producers in Routt County."

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Adonna Allen, who is the president of Alpine Bank Steamboat Spring branch and Daughenbaugh's daughter, said the donation came as a way for the national bank to celebrate a milestone.

"This all started because Alpine Bank is celebrating it's 45 year anniversary," Allen said. "The company as a whole decided to honor three nonprofits, and so among all of our 40 branches, we all had to submit a nonprofit that we felt represented trail blazing effort."

Allen submitted Community Agriculture Alliance, and it won.

"In that effort, we had set aside money to help the nonprofit to do something that they would not necessarily do," Allen said. "So when Marsha decide that she was going to retire, I said to the company, 'What do you think?' They responded with, 'Yes this is exactly what we had in mind.'"

Allen is proud of her mother's legacy at the agriculture alliance and thrilled that the endowment fund will now bear her mother's name.

"I'm just so proud of her because she is one of those lucky people that has gotten to do something she loves, and she is passionate about it," Allen said. "For that to live on in perpetuity is pretty exciting."

Michele Meyer, who will replace Daughenbaugh Monday, said the endowment fund was set up several years ago after longtime rancher Donald Lufkin left money to the organization in his will. The following year the fund got another boost when rancher Vernon Summer passed away and left money to the group.  The board decided an endowment fund was the best way to support the agriculture alliance longterm.

Meyer is also excited about taking the helm on Monday, but admits that she will miss working with Daughenbaugh. The two have been together for the past eight years, and Meyer said she will miss Daughenbaugh wisdom, experience and friendship.

"It's nothing like stepping into something that I haven't done before," Meyer said. "The bigger issue for me is that we work together as a team. To not have her here on Monday I'm sure I'm going to be going, 'Hey Marsha what do you think about this?' There is not going to be anybody  her to answer me."

To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.