What will be your legacy?  Will it be a legacy of leadership, of family traditions, one of generosity, or, perhaps of philanthropy? The acts of our lifetime shape the way we are remembered long after we pass away.
The community of La Porte City will  benefit from the legacy of Alice Fleisher Janss for generations to come, thanks to a significant gift from her estate to the museum’s established endowment. Janss, who died in 2011, was a lifelong supporter of the La Porte City FFA Historical and Ag Museum.
In 2007, the museum established an endowment to ensure its operations can remain sustainable for years to come.
“Use of an endowment fund to generate revenue is widely held as a best practice for museums. Just as the average citizen tries to plan and provide for their future needs, the board chose the [creation of an] endowment as a way to save for the museum’s future. This endowment began with gifts from the Ida Kahler and Ella Mae Klar estates and numerous other memorial donations over the years,” said Sherry Sheffler, Museum Board President.
“The Museum strives to add to the quality of life and a sense of pride in our community. We provide educational experiences and social events for all ages,” she added
From its infancy dating back to the 1970s, Alice Fleischer Janss saw benefits the museum could offer to the community of La Porte City. When the local FFA chapter founded the museum, under the leadership of Ron Borton, citizens came forward with treasures from their attics and barns to begin a collection of artifacts that now numbers in the thousands.  Among them are more than 100 items donated by Janss, including furniture, display cases, even the wedding dress she wore in 1948.
“Alice knew we were interested in her life, her stories and gaining a greater understanding of La Porte City and [the state of] Iowa during her era. The artifacts she donated had value not only because of their age, but because they had a story– her story,” said LeAnn Craft, Senior Associate at the museum.
“Alice represented the true pioneer spirit of fierce independence, hard work and humble beginnings. She relished surprising us with new donations that had marvelous stories attached.  This gift to the museum was her biggest surprise of all, [a gift] of unwavering support and belief in the value of the museum that has deeply touched the hearts of everyone associated with the museum. [It] will have a lasting impact on the future of the museum and on the quality of life in the community that she called home,” she added.
Since its creation, museum fundraising efforts have been focused on the goal of attaining an endowment of one million dollars.
“With the addition of Alice’s gift, the museum will be approximately one fourth of the way toward reaching our goal. We are very grateful for her support and the support of everyone who has donated to the Museum.”
For more information about the Museum endowment fund, logon to the museum website at www.lpcmuseum.com  or call 342-3619.