The Next Step: The Weber Fund

Posted on Apr 12, 2022 by Jon Dize

It started last year by an idea by a TLSP board member, Brian Bean.

An idea for a way to publicly thank our 370 teachers, staff, administrators, that had been our warriors on the frontlines of education at our 19 Lutheran schools in Northeast Indiana. Donors across several counties raised over $50,000 in donations and gift cards.

Thanks to this successful thank-you effort for today’s teachers, The Lutheran Schools Partnership has created the next step initiative to encourage tomorrow’s educators to choose the counties surrounding Fort Wayne as their home to begin a career of teaching at one of our 19 Lutheran schools.

Named the John Weber Teacher Support Fund, we want your generosity to attract talented and dedicated church workers and encourage lifelong employment and involvement in Lutheran education in our area by removing barriers, including debt reduction, helping with relocation costs, or securing housing.

John Weber was a well-known educator in our area, having served as a teacher, fundraising director, coach, and principal. John’s goal was to share “Jesus loves you!” with every child. At John’s core was a strong desire to support and encourage young people to consider a Lutheran educational vocation. John’s earthly life came to a premature end in the fall of 2021 from COVID-related complications after previously winning a battle with cancer. With the blessing of his family, we couldn’t think of a better person to attach to this new initiative.

With your help we can reach our initial balance goal of $20,000 in April so that we can choose the first new Weber Fund recipient in time for Spring graduation. We have already received a starting matching gift challenge of $7,500 from two groups including John’s widow Sarah. Together we can ensure generations of students will benefit from educators who follow the path John led.

P.S. please view the short video featuring Sarah Weber explaining the Weber Teacher Fund on YouTube here. Please consider an online or auto pay gift here to help us meet our $7,500 match.