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The Gordon LaFontaine Endowment for Turfgrass Research
The Gordon LaFontaine Endowment for Turfgrass Research was created to establish a solid source of funding for basic research in the field of turfgrass science. Basic research tends to be longer term, more involved and more expensive than applied research. The very nature of this research requires a stable source of funding.
Michigan State University and the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation have funded the initial research into the mechanism of disease infection, plant response on a molecular level and the genetic mechanism for plant resistance to disease. Dr. Joe Vargas, world renowned turf pathologist at MSU, has identified creeping bentgrass selections that show excellent resistance to dollar spot. Dr. Ray Hammerschmidt, Department Chair of Plant Pathology, has joined the turf team to look at the mechanism of dollar spot infection using a research approach that is novel to turf. Currently, no other research institution is exploring this system using the model that has been developed at MSU.
The release of dollar spot resistant bentgrass cultivars is within sight. Greater resources available through a fully funded endowment will ensure a realization of these goals within the next 5 years. Reaching our goal of raising $2.1 million during the Turfgrass 2010 campaign for the LaFontaine Endowment will make the dream of disease resistant turfgrasses a reality.
Funds Overview & Guidelines
What are the objectives of this fund?
The LaFontaine Endowment Fund was created to establish a source of funding for basic research in the field of turfgrass science. Basic research tends to be longer term, more involved and more expensive than applied research, and seeks to address research issues of long-term significance.
How is this account funded?
Donations are solicited from individuals interested in improving the Turfgrass Science program at MSU.
Is this donation tax deductable?
The Michigan Turfgrass Foundation accepts gifts and pledges via cash, check or credit card for the Annual Fund or any of the three endowed funds. The MTF can also accept planned or immediate gifts from estates, insurance, real estate, stocks, bonds and other negotiable securities for any fund. The MTF can also work with donors through the MSU Foundation to set up a variety of trusts. The MTF is a 501c3 non-profit foundation.
How much is needed in this fund?
The initial goal of this fund was to raise one million dollars in principal. The long term goal is to continually build the principal amount such that the interest will support the stated goals of the fund.
What should be done with the interest earned from this account?
Each year, up to 5.0% of the value of the fund, not to exceed the available interest, shall be spent to support basic research in turfgrass science.
How can I lend my support?
Donate to the Gordon LaFontaine Endowment
Michigan Turfgrass Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. P.O. Box 27156, Lansing, MI 48909