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The mission of the Otto Schoitz Foundation is to improve the health and wellbeing of the community and its individual members by funding grants. 


Our Roots

Mr. Otto A. SchoitzOtto A. Schoitz | The Foundation is proud to be named after local philanthropist and industrialist Otto A. Schoitz, a Danish immigrant born in 1883. In his lifetime Schoitz was identified as Waterloo’s top benefactor, giving more to the city than any other citizen. Otto Schoitz’ benevolence included a pacesetting donation in honor of his late wife as part of a community-wide effort to raise money to build a new hospital, the Charlotte Lee Schoitz Memorial Hospital. Upon his death, Otto Schoitz left specific instructions to publish his last will and testament in the local newspaper hoping to teach others what a benevolent mindset could accomplish.

Wheaton Franciscan Sisters | In 1986 Schoitz Memorial Hospital became part of the Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare System, a Catholic health care organization started by the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters nearly 150 years ago. The Franciscan Sisters first came to the United States in 1872 and began a rich history of responding to the needs of a constantly changing society, with a preference for serving the poor. Throughout the years while they created caring communities, the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters held a philosophy of human and community development, which emphasized respect for each person. In 2016 the Wheaton Sisters transferred their Iowa ownership interest.  

The Otto Schoitz Foundation | The Wheaton transfer opened the door to establish a new and independent foundation, the Otto Schoitz Foundation, with an initial endowment in excess of $50 million. The Otto Schoitz Foundation continues the tradition of serving to the benefit of its community following the legacies of philanthropist Mr. Otto Schoitz and the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters. Also seeking to respond to the needs of a constantly changing society, the Foundation partners with not-for-profit organizations aligned with its mission to improve the health and wellbeing of all individuals in the Cedar Valley. 

Read more about Otto Schoitz Foundation's Approach to Funding and How to Apply here.


Heart with Sunlight

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