Community Foundation Legacy Will Forever Support St. Lawrence County
WATERTOWN — The Dr. D. Susan Badenhausen Legacy Fund, a charitable fund of the Northern New York Community Foundation, has been established through a bequest from a St. Lawrence County resident and retired physician who passed away in September 2018 at the age of 83.
As an enduring tribute to the life and legacy of Dr. Susan Badenhausen and her decades-long devotion to St. Lawrence County, the North Country and its people, this permanent fund will support charitable organizations that strive to improve the quality of life in the county.
Dr. Badenhausen believed in the strength of community and was a passionate supporter of the people and places in the region she loved and called home. This charitable fund forever continues her legacy of caring for others while perpetuating her interests and passions in responsible and thoughtful ways in a geographic- specific focus.
“This incredibly generous and enduring gift will not only strengthen St. Lawrence County now, but for generations to come. As a community foundation, it can provide support that is both flexible and lasting with geographic specificity,” said Rande Richardson, Community Foundation executive director. “We feel incredibly honored to be part of something that extends Dr. Badenhausen’s life of service to others and the place she called home.”
Grant funding will be awarded annually to qualified nonprofit organizations whose missions and efforts align with the fund’s objectives. The Community Foundation’s board of directors recently approved the following first-time grants:
- Canton College Foundation — $50,000 to purchase three “Nursing Anne Simulator” manikins designed to reflect real-life conditions in a controlled environment. SUNY Canton prepares future nursing professionals through its two-year Associate of Applied Science and four-year Bachelor of Science in nursing degrees.
- Helena Volunteer Fire Department — $50,000 for lifesaving equipment needed to safely respond to fires and hazardous situations. Grant support will also help recruit, train and retain first responders and an ice rescue team in the community. Funding will support replacement of eight Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus and bottles, and other safety equipment.
- North Country Public Radio — $50,000 to replace critical broadcast equipment as part of a broadcast studio modernization project. This project will bolster reliability and service to the NCPR audience through high-quality local programming. Needed equipment also supports collaboration with local performing arts organizations and cultural events in the community.
- WPBS-TV — $50,000 for the creation of new content for television broadcast and digital distribution plus outreach and promotional efforts. New programming will include an artist profile series with premiere screening and student showcase, component educational materials, and virtual screenings.
Moving forward, support from the Dr. D. Susan Badenhausen Legacy Fund of the Northern New York Community Foundation will be awarded through a competitive process, with approximately $50,000 awarded annually. Applications for grant funding will be available later this year through the Community Foundation, with awards made in the fourth quarter.
About Dr. D. Susan Badenhausen
Following years of medical education and service as a research professional and physician, Dr. Badenhausen made the North Country her home in 1975, and quickly grew to cherish its people as friends, serving all to whom she provided medical care with dignity and respect. “Dr. Susan,” as she was known to her many patients and friends, grew up on Staten Island, New York, and graduated from Connecticut College, New London, in 1957. In 1971, she earned a Doctor of Medicine from the Boston University School of Medicine, after several years working as a research professional at Columbia University. Shortly after she settled in St. Lawrence County, Dr. Badenhausen established a health care practice with her partner, Joann M. Spatafora. In addition to her practice, she and Joann formed an organic farm in the Town of Brasher where the two enlisted the help of many agricultural interns from Cornell University. Joann passed in 2001 from complications of ALS.
Dr. Badenhausen’s contributions to health care in St. Lawrence County are extensive: She was the physician director for the Potsdam Nursing Home; a physician for Sunmount Residential Center in Massena; school physician for Parishville-Hopkinton Central School; a public health officer for the towns of Brasher, Stockholm, Hopkinton, and Lawrence; served on the St. Lawrence County Board of Health; and a longtime member of the Canton-Potsdam Hospital medical staff.
She maintained a keen interest in the health and well-being of her community, advocating for access to culture and education. Thanks to her gifts, doors opened in 2014 to the Badenhausen Branch of the Massena Public Library, Main Street, Brasher Falls, giving Tri-Town residents access to needed educational resources. Dr. Badenhausen remained one of the few physicians anywhere who still made house calls, even in the middle of a North Country winter. Her black leather medical bag was always packed and ready in her Brasher Falls home.
About the Northern New York Community Foundation
Since 1929, the Northern New York Community Foundation has invested in improving and enriching the quality of life for all in communities across Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties.
Through partnerships with businesses and organizations, charitable foundations, and generous families and individual donors, the Community Foundation awards grants and scholarships from an endowment and collection of funds that benefit the region. Its commitment to donors helps individuals achieve their charitable objectives now and for generations to come by preserving and honoring legacies of community philanthropy while inspiring others.
The Community Foundation is a resource for local charitable organizations, donors, professional advisors, and nonprofit organizations. It also works to bring people together at its permanent home in the Northern New York Philanthropy Center to discuss challenges our communities face and find creative solutions that strengthen the region and make it a great place to live, work, and play.