C. Keith Birkenfeld Memorial Trust
In June of 2007 the C. Keith Birkenfeld
Memorial Trust granted Olympic
Mountain Rescue $26,000 for the
replacement of our aging rescue
vehicle. Olympic Mountain Rescue
greatly appreciates this support and
would like to acknowledge the unique
individual behind this grant.
C. Keith Birkenfeld grew up in Bremerton. After graduating from the University of Washington in 1963 and follow up studies at Seattle University he became a teacher in Bellevue. He retired early for medical reasons and taking his doctorÕs advice seriously, he began taking sea voyages to restore his health. Though always considering Kitsap County his real home, he traveled the world over and was known to hobnob with stars like Bob Hope, Ginger Rogers and many more. Never earning more than $21,500 a year Keith still found the means to invest in real estate, stocks and bonds. These investments combined with his notoriously thrifty lifestyle allowed him to establish an estate valued at $18 million dollars.
When Keith died in September of 2005 at the age of 66, he designated $13.5 million dollars to establish the C. Keith Birkenfeld Memorial Trust. His desire for this trust was to focus primarily on supporting causes that directly benefited the communities of his beloved Kitsap County. The trust, administrated by the Seattle Foundation, began awarding grants in 2007 and will continue to for the next 20 year.
Keith also provided support for projects across the nation, including financial support for the restoration of a 16th Century Spanish church ceiling that William Randolph Hearst had installed in his castle; and the establishment of student internships at Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's home in Virginia.
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