Elevating Human Abilities Since 1967

Legacy Gift Stories


Bill Morris

Member, Legacy Circle & Board Member, Emeritus

webpicsquareround22“Kenneth, my wife’s and my son, was the All-American boy until age 10 when he was diagnosed with Tuberous Sclerosis, a genetic disorder causing multiple disabilities. School systems provide programs and support for persons with disabilities, but cease when participants reach maturity. In the distant past there was nothing of consequence available in the North Bay for these young adults until BI came along.

BI provides multiple employment opportunities, support services and a way of life formerly not available to adults like Kenneth. This is a blessing for them, their families and the community, however it does require ongoing funding which is why I have made a legacy gift to BI through a bequest in my will.”



Jayne Hamel

Member, Legacy Circle & Board Member, Emeritus

“Our gift will combine with others to protect this amazing and vital community resource for future generations.”

“Forty years ago the founders of Becoming Independent had a vision in which their children were included in the activities that make life rewarding and meaningful. Thanks to their foresight we now serve, with excellence, hundreds of people with special needs providing them with work, education, creative opportunities, life-skills development, living support and transportation.

Because we want to continue the legacy that was started more than 40 years ago, my husband Peter and I created a plan that links us to the future of Becoming Independent. We feel great satisfaction in knowing that our legacy gift will combine with others to protect this amazing and vital community resource for future generations.”



Lisa Folsom-Ernst

Member, Legacy Circle & Fund Development Director

webpicsquareround23“My mother, Geneva Scheihing Folsom, and I are pictured here at a BI gathering donning our “2 Cool 2 Fail” shades. During her lifetime, Mom was a member of our monthly pledge program, but her last contribution, by far, arrived after her lifetime.

Mom died at the age of 89 a few years ago, vigorous and lively, embracing life with gusto until the very end. A music therapist with a doctorate in Special Education, Mom spent many years working with and advocating for people with disabilities. Her doctoral thesis included the creation of a series of Life Skills teaching manuals. By carving out a portion of her estate for Becoming Independent, Mom’s spirit and values will live on for years to come. Her life and the mission of BI have inspired me to make my own legacy gift commitment.”



For more information:

Lisa Folsom-Ernst, Fund Development Director / (707)524-6751 / lfernst@becomingindependent.org