Philanthropy isn’t about us, it’s about improving the county

by Julianne Buck

Executive Director, Community Foundation of Grundy County


Well, it finally happened.

After years of wishing and promising, we finally got to New Hampshire to see Jim Baum’s mountain.

Yes, Jim Baum bought a mountain. Well, it’s part of a mountain – 250 acres on the eastern slope of Moose Mountain just outside of Hanover, New Hampshire. Jim’s Dartmouth College roommate is affiliated with the City of Hanover and about 10 years ago they approached Jim about helping them with a conservation project.

The acreage in question was in danger of being purchased for private use that would have interrupted the flow of public trails along Moose Mountain. Jim and Carol bought it, named it “Baum Conservation Area,” and they have a forester who is working to restore the land to its original flora and fauna.

Jim also enjoys spending hours with his tools clearing the trails and chatting with hikers.

It is a popular area in the summer, but also for snow skiing in the winter. After the Baums pass, ownership of the area will transfer to Dartmouth College and the Outing Club (Jim was a student member), who will be responsible for its maintenance.

The conservation area is open to the public, so I encourage you to take a trip out East to see it, plus all of the other beautiful scenery.

We also spent a few days in the White Mountains National Forest – very beautiful with plenty of places to camp, hotel and eat!

Now, I don’t tell this story to brag.

I tell this story because it incorporates two things that we community foundations love – 1) donors who use their assets to protect their passions to benefit others and 2) donors who get actively philanthropic while they’re alive so that they can enjoy it.


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