Besser legacy of giving lives on

Jesse and Anna Besser must have been smiling this week.

Celebrating 75 years of philanthropic awards across the community, trustees of the Besser Foundation announced Wednesday $2.4 million in unsolicited gifts to seven local organizations.

It was a move that left residents speechless.

Talk about making a splash!

The biggest award — $1 million to the Alpena Boys and Girls Club for that agency to move into a new facility, left Director Brad Somers in tears.

Who would have thought as he headed to work that morning that, before the day ended, he would learn that the club had $1 million more in its coffers?

Other beneficiaries were Alpena Public Schools, Alpena Community College, Alpena Child Care and Development Center, MidMichigan Health Systems, Friends of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary, and the Besser Museum of Northeast Michigan.

“Over our many years, foundation trustees have stayed true to the vision, commitment, and beliefs set forth by our founders, Jesse and Anna Besser,” Besser Foundation President Jim Park said in a statement. “We believe these impact grants carry on those traditions and will provide visible real and economic impact in our community.”

Indeed it will.

The legacy of Jesse and Anna Besser lives on, and the fruits of their investment 75 years ago continues to bless the community where they lived and worked.

Thanks to their foresight, generations still are being touched by the graciousness of that amazing entrepreneur and his wife.



Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)