Dear Torch Club member,

As you may know, Torch has been assisted for many years by The Torch Foundation, which is a non-profit charitable and educational organization that can accept fully tax deductible contributions from Torch members and the public. The Foundation was established in 1979 and has used contributed funds and investment income to support the Paxton Award and the presentation of the Paxton Paper at the annual convention of the International Association of Torch Clubs (IATC). This award, created in memory of Norris Paxton, a late member of the Albany (New York) Torch Club, is presented each year to the Torch member whose paper is selected as the best of the year.

A number of  years ago, the Torch Foundation received a major bequest from the trust of Robert A. Oldenburg, a longtime member of the Chicago Torch Club, increasing total Foundation assets to nearly $70,000. After considerable discussion, the Torch Foundation Board has decided to establish The Oldenburg Endowment Fund, which includes all funds received from the Oldenburg Trust. That corpus will remain inviolate; the income will be utilized exclusively as requested by the Oldenburg Trust, namely, “to supplement the existing information service to [Torch] members and prospective members.” This corpus has now been invested.

The Oldenburg bequest has galvanized Foundation members to action. The Foundation Board has been completely reconstituted and now meets monthly by telephone and at the annual meeting at the convention, to develop and implement Foundation policy.  The IATC Board is apprised monthly of Foundation matters and actions taken by the Foundation Board.

Currently, the Foundation’s focus is to help IATC widen Torch membership. Financial assistance can now be offered to help found new Torch clubs. Foundation membership dues and contributions to the Foundation have become an important part of the annual income that is utilized by the Foundation. Therefore, membership in the Foundation is being actively solicited. The resulting income, together with the Oldenburg Endowment Fund income, will permit the Foundation to expand its work in service of Torch beyond the Paxton Paper Award.

The Foundation has established a lifetime membership program, permitting a Torch member to become a lifetime Foundation member with four annual payments of $125 or with a single payment of $500. Annual dues remain at $25 per year. Memberships are for the calendar year and are not pro-rated.

Please consider becoming a member of the Torch Foundation. The Torch Foundation brochure (available on the website) provides additional information about the Torch Foundation. The Foundation Board welcomes your thoughts on IRS eligible charitable and educational projects and activities that the Torch Foundation may undertake in support of the International Association of Torch Clubs.


Richard R. Lynch


The Torch Foundation