Winfield Elks Charitable Fund

In the beginning...

The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (B.P.O.E.) once again invested in the Winfield community by establishing a field of interest endowment fund with Legacy Foundation. Legacy received monies from the Elks in June 2016. The endowment fund supports charitable projects and programs in Winfield with special consideration given to Elks Programs. One grant was immediately awarded from the fund. Eagle Nest, Inc. received $500.00 to purchase fans for distribution to needy families during the heat wave that summer.

The Grand Lodge of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks in response to the application of ten brother Elks granted a charter on August 14, 1902, to establish the Winfield Lodge No. 732. Charter members were: Cy Anderson, J.F. Balliet, F.M. Bevis, J.J. Brady, W.J. Brady, Max Friedenberg, Geo. Gary, Moss Hahn, J.N. Harter, Ed L. Hepler, M.F. Jarvis, C.J. Jurpin, J.J. Lafferty, Lamont, Wm. Marks, Ed Nelson, Harry Plagmann, Geo. Sabin, B.F. Sadil, and Grant Stafford. Winfield Lodge No. 732 was a significant presence in the community over the years supporting many philanthropic efforts throughout the decades both in the Winfield community and through the fraternal organization’s nation projects.

Due to declining membership in recent years, permission was granted by the Grand Lodge of the fraternal organization for Winfield Lodge No. 732 and El Dorado, Kansas, Lodge No. 1407 to merge while retaining the Charter and other memorabilia of both the lodges for commemorative purposes. The Winfield lodge building however was sold. Winfield Elks with leadership from Ed Laing and Nona Reep worked to retain the monies generated by the sale of the building for good works to be accomplished in Winfield by partnering with Legacy.

The Honor Roll plaques and other memorabilia may be viewed at the Cowley County Historical Society Museum, 1011 Mansfield, Winfield.

Information from the B.P.O.E. of the United States of America website (www.elks.org) tells the Elks story. “With more than 850,000 members and 2,000 Lodges nationwide, Elks are providing charitable services that help build stronger communities. Elks invest in their communities through programs that help children grow up healthy and drug-free, by undertaking projects that address unmet need, and by honoring the service and sacrifice of our veterans. During the 2014-15 fiscal year, the Elks National Foundation received $12,753,829 in total contributions and bequests with expenditures of $20,880,187 on grants, scholarships, and other programs.”


The principal of the endowment fund remains intact, while the interest earnings are used for purposes designated by the Elks. Endowed funds are invested to provide both current income and growth on the principal. Each year 5% of the Fair Market Value (FMV) of the endowed fund is used by the Winfield Elks Charitable Fund to provide grants to Winfield (KS) area charitable projects and programming that helps children grow up healthy and drug-free, by undertaking projects that address unmet need, and/or honoring the service and sacrifice of our veterans. Since 2016 the Winfield Elks Charitable Fund has given over $12,000 in grants to community projects without spending any of the original gift, in fact the principal has grown.

Recent grants provided by the Winfield Elks Charitable Fund include support for Bailey’s Barking Dog Park, Eagle Nest Inc., and Winfield Recreation Commission activities such as Outdoor Kansas Kids Day and 2021 Family Movie Night.

Because of the visionary leadership of Laing and Reep, though the Lodge is gone, the presence of the Winfield Elks will live on continuing significant philanthropic work through the Winfield Elks Charitable Fund at Legacy Foundation.