A Heart for Service in Memory of Gregg Alexander
Co-Alliance Director Gregg Alexander called one afternoon last fall and asked if Co-Alliance had any financial capacity to help a struggling area of his district. The small town of Kempton, Indiana in rural Tipton County has undergone a lot of change in the last decade since manufacturing moved away from the area. Jobs and businesses left, and opportunity moved away with them.
Gregg was an active member of his church and viewed the congregation as small but mighty. Gregg, along with other members of the Kempton Methodist Episcopal Church, created a plan of how they could help this small community.
They wrote a three-page proposal communicating the many ideas they had for community outreach and support. An excerpt from their original letter:
Kempton is a low-income, rural community. It was, many years ago, a thriving town. Now it is a shadow of its former self. There are really no options for people in Kempton as far as community gatherings or outreach.
There are children within our community who only receive healthy meals when school is in session. There are families who struggle to make ends meet. We at Kempton Methodist Episcopal Church would love to help meet the needs of our community in a partnership with Co-Alliance. We are currently a small congregation of 25 people. We recognize that we could impact the lives of more people by partnering with a company who sees the needs and works to meet them.
After consideration and reading through the details of the big plans this little church had for the small town, Co-Alliance decided to reach out to our partners at Land O’Lakes. Land O’Lakes has a foundation which offers matching grants for qualifying and worthy causes. The Kempton community checked every box.
Together, Co-Alliance and Land O’Lakes provided every penny the rural church requested, making our total donation $7,000.
On August 20, 2022, the Kempton Methodist Episcopal Church and others in the community organized a back-to-school event which distributed backpacks and supplies to children in the community. They fed those who joined the event at the fire station and even provided free haircuts.
The event was quite a success for the town and the families within it.
But there was someone missing.
Just four days before the back-to-school event that Gregg Alexander so passionately fundraised for, Gregg passed away following a very brief illness. The entire community, county and co-op was devastated by the loss.
Today, Gregg’s legacy of giving a heart for service lives on in his home area because of the work he did. The donated money did not end with a back-to-school it remains working in the community of Kempton, serving the people Gregg dearly valued. The church continues outreach by providing groceries for community members in need.
We invite you to listen to our podcast, Cultivated, where we sit down with Lissa Litka, pastor of Kempton Methodist Episcopal Church. Lissa describes the rural community, the people within it and one very important person who made this all possible: Gregg Alexander. Co-Alliance President and CEO Kevin Still also joins this conversation to speak about the value of our Board of Directors and their leadership in our communities and co-op.
The family of Gregg Alexander created the Gregg Alexander Memorial Scholarship Fund. To contribute to the Scholarship Fund, please make checks payable to Co-Alliance Cooperative, Inc.
Please write in the memo Attn: Board Scholarship – Gregg Alexander. Mail to Co-Alliance Cooperative, Inc., Board Scholarship Fund – Gregg Alexander, 770 N. High School Road, Indianapolis, Indiana, 46214.