EdCC Foundation receives $550,000 donation


January 2, 2020

Eva Gordon

The Edmonds Community College Foundation is the recipient of a $550,000 donation from the estate of Eva Gordon – a local centenarian who cared deeply about education.

The EdCC Foundation is one of 17 Washington state community college foundations to receive approximately $550,000 as part of a $10 million gift from the Eva Gordon Estate. The estate's gift is one of the largest to community and technical colleges in Washington state.

"We are very thankful for this exceptionally generous gift," said Edmonds CC President Amit B. Singh in a news release.

"It will make a significant difference for so many of our students. Eva Gordon lived a life in service to others, and her generosity and caring will live on."

With jobs, family responsibilities, and a median age of 30, Edmonds Community College students are often one step away from having to quit college to pay their bills, Singh said. The donation will allow school foundations to help students pay for books, fees, supplies, technology needs, housing, transportation, food, child care, and unexpected financial emergencies.

Edmonds CC plans to use the funds for scholarships and student success programs.

Shoreline Community College is also a recipient.

It plans to create an endowment dedicated to scholarships for new students, according to the Seattle Times. It will be called the Eva C. Gordon Memorial Scholarship.

Although donations to foundations are important, Washington state is also attempting to make college more accessible.

In May, Gov. Jay Inslee signed an education bill establishing one of the most progressive higher education investments in the country. The Workforce Education Investment Act is a comprehensive package of major proposals that include two governor-priority policies.

The act guarantees financial aid for more than 110,000 qualified students in Washington to attend college for free or at a discounted rate. The law also expands the governor's Career Connect Washington Initiative. It establishes a study-and-work approach so students can get real life work experience and high school or college credit at the same time.


Gordon was a hard-working woman who was ahead of her time. Having lived a long and happy life she had few regrets, save one: not having a formal education.

"If I had a scholarship when I got out of high school, I could have done so much more," Gordon said in a 2013 profile by South Seattle College.

Gordon, who died in June 2018 at the age of 105, grew up on an orchard in Eugene, Oregon, and graduated at the top of her high school class. Little by little, she invested money from meager paychecks to build a fortune and give back to others.

During this time, Gordon loved seeing college students work hard and improve their lives, wishing she could have been a student herself if money hadn't been so tight in her younger years.

"A lot of people didn't know the wealth she had. If there was a coupon for two-for-one at Applebee's, she was all about that," said John Jacobs, her godson and estate representative.

"She liked seeing students working, earning, and doing things. Her goal was to provide an opportunity for those folks who could ill afford it, whether vocational training or an academic skill."

Other foundations receiving donations from the Eva Gordon Estate include Bates Technical College, Cascadia College, Clover Park Technical College, Everett Community College, Grays Harbor College, Green River Community College, Highline Community College, Lake Washington Institute of Technology, North Seattle College, Pierce College Foundation, Renton Technical College, Seattle Central College, Skagit Valley College, South Puget Sound Community College, and Tacoma Community College.


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