WHEELING - Eriks Janelsins, who previously worked at the Schrader Environmental Center at Oglebay, has been named president of the Oglebay Foundation.
In making the announcement today, trustees of the Oglebay Foundation said Janelsins will work with G. Randolph "Randy " Worls on several important fundraising initiatives for the foundation. Worls, as chairman of the foundation board, also will serve in the capacity of chief executive officer and will remain as a full-time employee.
Janelsins will immediately become involved in expanding the contributor base of the foundation with an initial goal of attracting 1,000 new annual donors to the foundation.
He also will work on increasing the contributions of existing annual donors.
Worls stressed that this aspect of the Oglebay Foundation's development is very important and it is particularly important to focus on younger people in the community who will hopefully remain here for the extent of their careers. Janelsins also will be responsible for developing new major donors who might consider significant gifts, entering into planned giving arrangements or creating estate plans.
Worls indicated that Janelsins will be an important part of future major fundraising initiatives that will focus on the upgrade and endowment of existing park facilities.
He added that while the foundation anticipates adding a few new significant facilities, the foundation's most important goal is to be able to keep the more than 100 buildings, miles of roads, grounds and landscaping in premium condition.
"We are very pleased to have Eriks as a member of the Oglebay Foundation team," Worls said. "He brings to the foundation a tremendous attitude and aptitude for fundraising and the coordination of the development of volunteers who will assist the Oglebay Foundation long into the future."
Janelsins said he is eager to begin the work with The Oglebay Foundation
"Since 1923, when the citizens of Wheeling first began discussions about the creation of a public park, generous and visionary individuals have met the challenge of creating the country's only self-sustaining park system. Today the parks attract hundreds of thousands of visitors from across the country. At the same time the needs of the local community with free programs for youth and community organizations are met by funding provided by the Foundation.
"No park system in the USA offers more opportunities than Oglebay and Wheeling Park for free recreation, education and entertainment," he added. "The foundation for the future success of the parks has been laid, and I look forward to working together with the community as we work to attract substantial gifts and grants that will keep our parks for everyone forever."
Janelsins has been a Wheeling resident for the past 11 years. In 2003, he was named director of the Schrader Environmental Center at Oglebay where he created and funded a wide variety of innovative projects and programs. He recruited and supported hundreds of volunteers in this process.
He is involved on the boards of several national and state organizations and locally he serves as the vice chairman of the Board of Family Service of the Upper Ohio Valley. He was the past chair of the Wheeling On Track Design Committee, and he is a member of the Blue Pencil Club.