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Longboat Key Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012 5 years ago

Brenner, Aposposos explore foundation for Key

by: Robin Hartill Managing Editor

Longboat Key already has the foundation for charitable giving.

It’s home to an active population that donates generously to many causes.

What Longboat Key doesn’t have is an actual foundation — i.e., a foundation focused on connecting donors with Longboat Key-specific causes. But that could change.

Vice Mayor David Brenner and Longboat Key Chamber of Commerce President Tom Aposporos met last week to discuss the possibility of a Community Foundation of Longboat Key with representatives of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County.

Brenner suggested the possibility in February, when Community Foundation CEO and President Roxie Jerde spoke to the Longboat Key Town Commission. He said that a community foundation could be a way to make a proposed community center a reality.

“One of the things that’s appealing about this is that this is the private sector,” Brenner told the Longboat Observer. “It wouldn’t be a town function at all.”

According to Aposporos, the idea first surfaced during hearings for the Longboat Key Club and Resort’s proposed $400 million project, when he and others discussed the possibilities for positive development if both sides put their money for attorney fees toward a community foundation.

Aposporos listed the possibilities in an April 2010 email on which he copied the Town Commission. He listed a variety of possibilities, including a program similar to the Ringling College of Art and Design’s Town Hall Lecture Series, support for the Longboat Library and Longboat Key Center for the Arts, a Division of Ringling College of Art and Design, establishment of a mentoring center and film commission support group and enhanced entrances to the Key.

The potential role of a community foundation surfaced again last month during preparations for Hal and Hazel Lenobel Appreciation Day, according to Aposporos, who discussed with Community Foundation officials the possibility of establishing a fund for the purpose of honoring a citizen annually.

“Despite the wealth of this community, I believe there would be plenty of areas in this community where funds could be expended,” he said.

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