Marc A. Stefanski, Chairman and CEO of Third Federal, announced a $500,000 gift to The Literacy Cooperative to establish the Kurt Karakul Prize. The endowment honors Karakul, who has been president of the Foundation since 2007.
“This grant is a tribute to Kurt’s contributions and dedication to the children of Slavic Village. He has worked tirelessly with our partners during the last 14 years to help children make positive strides in their reading test scores,” Stefanski said. Establishing this gift in his name will further ensure his impact will continue for decades to come.”
The gift from the Foundation will allow The Literacy Cooperative to develop an award focused on those who, like Karakul, are literacy champions and making a positive impact on the communities in which they live and work.
The Third Federal Foundation was formed in 2007 with $50 million in stock and $5 million in cash as a result of the Initial Public Offering of Third Federal stock. Karakul was the first director of the Foundation, leading impactful initiatives in education, housing and healthcare in the communities Third Federal serves, and most directly, in Slavic Village, where the company was founded in 1938. In 2020, the Foundation was one of the first funders of the Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund, which supported non-profit organizations and programs hit hard by the pandemic.
Third Federal Savings and Loan Association is a leading provider of savings and mortgage products, and operates under the values of love, trust, respect, a commitment to excellence and fun. Founded in Cleveland in 1938 as a mutual association by Ben and Gerome Stefanski, Third Federal’s mission is to help people achieve the dream of home ownership and financial security. It became part of a public company in 2007 (Nasdaq: TFSL). Third Federal, which lends in 25 states and the District of Columbia, is dedicated to serving consumers with competitive rates and outstanding service. Third Federal, an equal housing lender, has 21 full service branches in Northeast Ohio, seven lending offices in Central and Southern Ohio, and 16 full service branches throughout Florida. As of September 30, 2019, the Company’s assets totaled $14.5 billion.