The Doris J. Wipper Fund supports Doris' Place in Stayton, a satellite of Family Building Blocks
A generous course of action.
“My mother believed in hard work, earning her own way and creating her own path,” says Lee Wipper, Doris Wipper’s only child. But Doris Wipper couldn’t have done it without help from others. The lifelong Oregonian also believed in giving back to the people of the state she loved.
Lee’s mother had married Lawrence “Larry” Freres, one of the sons of T.G. Freres, and was a bookkeeper for Freres Lumber Company. When her husband died in the early ‘60s, she inherited stock and, being the excellent businessperson that she was, worked her way up to become the company’s chief financial officer. She died in 2000, leaving a will specifying that two funds be established with The Oregon Community Foundation. The Doris J. Wipper Fund grants to nonprofit organizations that benefit children, and scholarships are awarded through the Doris J. Wipper Scholarship Fund.
“She wanted to help the next generation of children, giving them opportunities they couldn’t otherwise have, and support local charities in need of financial assistance. It’s tough living in areas where the main industry is tied to the land. It’s so good to know that in times of true need, these funds can help organizations step in and lend a hand,” says Lee, one of the funds’ advisors, who lives in New York.
Lee’s mother also appreciated that OCF is an Oregon organization based in Portland. “She knew they’d help direct her funds to the Willamette Valley and the state, where she wanted her donations to remain. That was the most important thing to her. My mother was an Oregonian in the best sense of the word. She was true to the land.”
Though Lee says Doris “wasn’t pleased when I moved to New York,” Lee has flown to Oregon to meet some of the people who have benefited from her mother’s funds. “It’s touching to hear their stories,“ Lee says. We’re giving scholarships to the children of people I may’ve known as a kid. Just knowing they can continue with their education because of my mother—seeing it come full circle—is fantastic. She did a wise thing!"