Estate donates $750,000 to Emmett kids

A prominent Emmett family gave local students a gift of $750,000 to support their academic dreams.

The Dean and Gay Welch estate established two endowments with the Emmett Public School Foundation. The first endowment of $500,000 will provide scholarships to Emmett High School graduates. The second endowment of $250,000 will provide support to students and programs in the Emmett School District.

“Dean and Gay are upstairs smiling down right now,” said their nephew, Rick Welch.

Emmett district Superintendent Wayne Rush said: “This is a tremendous gift for a school our size.”

The endowments were established with the Idaho Community Foundation, a statewide nonprofit that administers long-term options for charitable donations.

The endowments will provide more than $22,000 in scholarships and more than $11,000 in program support every year. Students who graduate from Emmett or Black Canyon high schools are eligible for $2,000 renewable scholarships for up to four years. The scholarship are to be used at Idaho’s four-year, two-year or professional technical institutions.

“I’m just overjoyed,” said Bob Hoover, the ICF president and CEO. “The Welches are helping today’s students achieve their academic goals.”

Cousins Rick Welch and Jim Welch delivered a check to Emmett school officials Thursday afternoon. A press conference held at Fleming Law Office was attend by Lt. Gov. Brad Little and several other community members and educators.

“Dean and Gay so much wanted to give back to this community,” Jim Welch said.

Dean Welch was born and raised in Emmett. He graduated from Emmett High in 1946. His career in aerospace and steel started with Boeing Airplane Co. in 1952. He moved into the steel industry with the Armco Co. and retired as CEO of the Ladish Co. in 1989. Dean passed away in July.

Welch donation
Rick Welch, middle, and his cousin Jim Welch, right, donate a check to the Emmett Public School Foundation on behalf of their relatives, Dean and Gay Welch.
Jennifer Swindell

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Managing editor and CEO Jennifer Swindell founded Idaho Education News in 2013. She has led the online news platform as it has grown in readership and engagement every year, reaching over one million pageviews in 2019. Jennifer has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. She also has served as a public information officer for Idaho schools and as a communication director at Boise State University. She can be reached at [email protected]

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