Taylor Lee named Lawrence County Community Foundation’s 2024 Lilly Endowment Community Scholar

BEDFORD – Taylor Lee, daughter of Chad Lee and Heather Reed, has been named Lawrence County Community Foundation’s 2024 Lilly Endowment Community Scholar.

Taylor Lee

Taylor is a senior at Mitchell High School and will work toward a bachelor’s degree in business, with a minor in political science. Her school choice is currently undecided, but the top contenders are Indiana University and Purdue University.

Taylor responded to the news by sharing, “I am extremely grateful and honored to be the 2024 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship recipient. It feels surreal to be reaching one of my dreams. I have been pushing myself for the last four years in the hope of receiving this scholarship. I would like to thank my family and teachers who have helped me reach this point in my life. I am looking forward to all the opportunities this will open for me.”

Taylor has been active in school sports, playing on the MHS varsity volleyball team and travel team, and the MHS varsity basketball team. She has worked with a group of incoming first-year students as a peer leader and has been a member of the Student Council, and Honor Society. What truly sets her apart though, an educator writes, is her unwavering commitment to academic excellence.

The Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship provides for full tuition, required fees, and a special allocation of up to $900 per year for required books and required equipment for four years of undergraduate study on a full-time basis leading to a baccalaureate degree at any Indiana public or private nonprofit college or university accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Taylor will also have the opportunity to participate in the Lilly Scholar Network (LSN) which connects both current scholars and alumni with resources and opportunities to be active leaders on their campuses and in their communities. Both the scholarship program and LSN are supported by grants from Lilly Endowment to Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) and Indiana Humanities.

Lilly Endowment created the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program for the 1998-99 school year and has supported the program every year since with grants totaling more than $505 million. More than 5,200 Indiana students have received the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship since the program’s inception.

The primary purposes of the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program are: to help raise the level of educational attainment in Indiana; to increase awareness of the beneficial roles Indiana community foundations can play in their communities; and to encourage and support the efforts of current and past Lilly Endowment Community Scholars to engage with each other and with Indiana business, governmental, educational, nonprofit and civic leaders to improve the quality of life in Indiana generally and in local communities throughout the state.

The Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly Sr. and his sons Eli and J.K. Jr. through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. In keeping with the founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education, and religion. The Endowment funds significant programs throughout the United States, especially in the field of religion.

However, it maintains a special commitment to its founders’ hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana. Since 1997, Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) has administered the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program statewide with funding provided by Lilly Endowment. Founded in 1948, ICI serves as the collective voice for the state’s twenty-nine private, nonprofit colleges and universities.

It is an honor for the Lawrence County Community Foundation to be a part of this exceptional program. They are impressed each year by the caliber of students in Lawrence County. These young women and men have been a positive force for change by serving their schools and community. It is heartening to know the county has young leaders devoted to Indiana. The Foundation looks forward to seeing these students’ accomplishments for years to come.