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Mike and Debbie Hicks

Mike and Debbie Hicks have deep roots in Lawrence County .  Both attended local schools through graduation.  Debbie traces her lineage through the Hatfields, while Mike’s ancestors have been here since the civil war.  Their three children, Michael, Kristen, and Jeffrey, all graduated from Bedford North Lawrence and were involved in 4-H, scouting, sports and academics as youngsters. 

The couple expresses gratitude for the community’s responsiveness to their business ventures, which have included Insurance Once, the Travel One travel agency, and property management and development.  Debbie notes, “We were blessed with a lot of gifts and we feel we should share them.”

Volunteering is one way the Hicks have given back.  “Volunteerism—people helping people—is so important for the community,” Debbie says.  She started visiting an “adopted grandma” at a local nursing home when she was in her twenties, and continued volunteering throughout her adult life, focusing at present on the Bedford Rotary Club and the United Way .  Mike is currently an Elder in the Calvary Lutheran Church .  Another project is developing an innovative housing system to help clients of crisis pregnancy centers. 

The couple believes their children learned the value of community primarily through their example as parents.  When Michael, Kristen, and Jeffrey were involved in athletics, Mike coached “more games than I could count!” he says.  Eldest son Michael, now teaching in Wisconsin , used to help his dad with coaching, and today is using basketball to reach out to troubled kids. 

When the Hicks updated their estate plans, reflecting their family’s current stage of life and tax situation, and took the opportunity to incorporate their community interests into their plans.  This included establishing three new endowment funds within the Lawrence County Community Foundation (LCCF) to benefit several different causes.  “Our faith, beliefs, and value system dictates a lot of what we choose to support,” Debbie explains. 

The Bedford Rotary Club Education Fund provides a way to support the educational programs of the local club without need of further annual fundraising.  Club members may recommend grants to support projects like the “I like me” program, which provides every preschool child in the community with a book personalized for them. 

The Calvary Lutheran Church Missions Fund and the Hicks Family Fund for Pregnancy Care Center will provide annual income to the respective beneficiary organizations.  “These endowments are now a vehicle available to anyone who is interested in supporting either the church’s mission programs or the Center, and doing it in a way that gives them perpetual support,” Mike explains. 

The Hicks are also directing unrestricted monies to LCCF.  “We know what is important to us and what some of the community needs are today,” Mike says, “but those needs are going to change.  We have confidence in the Community Foundation’s board to make a difference for the community with these funds as new needs arise.” 

The couple are members of LCCF’s new Legacy Society, which recognizes and thanks people during their lifetime for planning gifts that will benefit the community after they are gone.  “We don’t think of ourselves as wealthy,” Debbie says, “and I don’t think you have to be wealthy to make a difference, but Mike and I have been fortunate.  At some point you have to decide, what are you going to do with your resources?  This is a way to help improve the quality of life for our community.” 

As with all funds at LCCF, anyone may give to any established fund.  Cash, stocks, and property may be donated, and gifts may be made through a bequest or trust.  For more information about giving to any of the funds mentioned, or to learn more about LCCF’s Legacy Society, call the office at 279-2215.      

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P.O. Box 1235, 1324 K Street, Suite 150, Bedford, IN 47421, 812-279-2215, fax 812-279-1984