A Celebration of Roots, Dreams & Miracles

Posted on July 15, 2021. Category: Uncategorized, WCS News

Founders Park Dedication Day, June 19th 2021

Schacht family members cut the ribbon dedicating the newly built Founders Park at Waterford Country School
Members of the extended Schacht Family at the ribbon cutting to dedicate the newly built “Founders Park”

On June 19, 2021, WCS staff, students, board members, generous donors and many Schacht family members gathered to view the beautifully completed Founders Park for the first time. It was a momentous occasion… a gorgeous day. Speakers Chris Lacey (CEO of Waterford Country School), Chip Anderson (Chairman of the Board of Trustees), Bill Martin (Retired Executive Director & visionary for Founders Park Project), Pam Schacht-Lewis (Founding Family member), DD Schacht (Founding Family member) and 2 WCS students including the great grandson of the Founding Family shared stories about what this park commemorated.

“Henry and Ettie Schacht founded the agency 99 years ago. They did it because they saw a need that was not being met. They did it because they had compassion for children who were less fortunate. They did it because they had a simple formula for success – unconditional love for any child, no matter what.”

Bill Martin, speaking about Founders – Henry & Ettie Schacht

“After my unplanned announcement that I would have to resign from Waterford Country School, there was one thing that I knew we had to do before I left. My announcement of resignation sparked a fundraising and construction campaign to build this park in 90 days.  With the focus of Julianna and the Development Office, the incredible design and marketing skills of Elena French, the construction focus by Ted Olynciw, Kathy Teel, and especially Brian Rolfe and his staff, and the help of dozens of Board and Staff, featuring the stars of our Facebook marketing videos, Ben Turner with his guests Winston the Duck and some goats, Kelly Walker, Anne Adams and Casey Saunders: the project took off!”

The Founders Park Project campaign was first announced at the September Golf Tournament and minutes after the announcement, I was approached by a good friend of WCS handing me a $1,000 dollar check.  In less than a 10-week period, we raised over $120,000, exceeding the goal set to build the park and ensuring the project would be completed.  So many people came forward with so much generosity, that it was just incredible. It seemed like a miracle to be able to get so much, so quickly. “


You have all heard the phrase “roots and wings”.  Basically it means that in order to be able to grow and develop, you have to know where you came from.  As we approach 100 years, we now pay tribute to our roots so that we have wings to take us forward. 

Thank you, Schacht family for giving birth to Waterford Country School.  It is a magnificent organization that has and will continue to help thousands of young people and their families.  It is our honor to dedicate this park to you.

Bill Martin