History of the Foundation

The Foundation for Eden Prairie Schools started with a group of Eden Prairie alumni coming together because of their passion for Eden Prairie Schools.  They started as the Alumni and Friends of Eden Prairie Schools (AFEPS).  Their initial goals were to:

  • Preserve and promote the history of Eden Prairie Schools
  • Provide connections and resources for alumni and friends of Eden Prairie Schools
  • Provide opportunities for personal and financial support of students and programs
  • Plan and facilitate alumni events

Initial organizational meeting held 9/14/1998 with 23 attendees.
Initial thoughts are that:

  • Foundation is a fundraising arm
  • Alumni Association is “friend-raising” arm
  • Letter to prospective interested parties

First activity was a celebration of Forty Years of Eden Prairie Football, October 1998.

First formal meeting held to form Alumni and Friends of Eden Prairie Schools (AFEPS).
Alumni social held February 7, 1999.
Legal filings made to establish Alumni and Friends of Eden Prairie Schools.
First Eagle Press newsletter distributed.  Plans are to produce Eagle Press twice per year.
First grant awarded.

Holasek-Griffiths scholarship established with $140,000 from Harold Griffiths in honor of his late wife, an Eden Prairie High School graduate.
The first Present with a Future program concludes and nets $1300.  Funds raised are shared between AFEPS and the district sites whose teacher(s) were honored.
Eagle Press publication in 2002 featured a firsthand account of the September 11th tragedy as witnessed by Stacy Forster, EPHS ’94, who was a journalist with the Wall Street Journal.
IRS grants AFEPS 501(c)(3) status.

AFEPS first mission statement is approved.  The mission statement is: To enhance and support the legacy of academic excellence in the Eden Prairie public schools by building connections with alumni and the community.
AFEPS receives its first “corporate donation” of $9,575 received from Von Maur.
First AFEPS fundraiser held featuring the Eden Prairie Jazz Ensemble and Robert Mondavi Wines.  Event is held in the Eden Prairie Center’s Garden Room.  The event netted $3,000.
Alumni and Friends of Eden Prairie Schools receives a donation from the Eden Prairie Ministerial Association via the past spring’s baccalaureate service for graduating seniors.

First Taste of Eden Prairie held at the newly remodeled Eden Prairie Center, attended by more than 400 people and raised over $10,000.

Alumni and Friends of Eden Prairie Schools changes name to Foundation for Eden Prairie Schools (FEPS).

FEPS makes its first three “large grants” to teachers totaling $15,000.

First Legacy Awards dinner held at Olympic Hills to honor outstanding staff, students, alumni and volunteers.
FEPS hires first paid Executive Director.

Computers for Kids program established.  Refurbished computers donated to students who need them via program established by a FEPS board member.

Total giving by FEPS surpasses $200,000.
Total endowed funds surpass $500,000.
First Alma Mater Trotter 5K fundraiser held beginning at Aerie Stadium and traveling through Round Lake Park.

FEPS facilitates development of the EPHS Global Learning Center by acting as a conduit for a $75,000 donation from the Stoebner Family Foundation and AVI Systems.
First FEPS Golf Classic held at Olympic Hills.

Total giving by FEPS reaches $500,000.
FEPS makes its largest direct donation to date in support of the CMS Media Center Transformation Project.  The project moved the media center from a print-focused to a technology-focused space.
For the first time, FEPS partners with the EP Noon Rotary to sponsor My Book Day.  Every first grade student receives a new book under this literacy program.

FEPS introduces Appreciate Gifts and community members choose to honor more than 90 teachers and staff members.

FEPS partners with PROP Food Shelf for the first time to provide backpacks and schools supplies to students in need.

FEPS introduces “Beyond the Diploma” Alumni Speaker Series to replace the Taste of Eden Prairie.  First speaker is Betsy McCann, EPHS Class of 1999 and University of Minnesota Marching Band Director.
Partners with the Police Crime Fund to fund the CounterAct program for all 5th graders.
Awards 22 individual scholarships valued at over $86,000.

Thank You For Your Support!

It’s because of you, our donors and partners, that we can support Eden Prairie students.