Mission and History

The Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country is the region’s philanthropic endowment, created to support charitable and civic efforts now and for the long term.

The Community Foundation’s mission is to foster a thriving Hill Country, inspire greater giving, celebrate legacy and heritage, and steward charitable resources for today and tomorrow. The Foundation’s stakeholders envision the Texas Hill Country as a vibrant community with opportunity for everyone. Future generations of the Hill Country will proudly inherit a hopeful, prosperous region where generosity and collaboration abound to create lasting improvement. Its mission and vision have guided its work for decades.

In 1981, a few forward-thinking residents of the Hill Country embarked on a journey to establish perpetual philanthropy. Their efforts have been wildly successful and many residents in the area have reaped the benefits of their vision.

Mrs. Alma Dietert gave the first gift of $5,000, and she continued to contribute during her lifetime and later, through her estate. Other area residents followed Mrs. Dietert’s lead, and the Community Foundation now trustees assets of more than $43 million.

The Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country works with donors, makes grants to nonprofit organizations, and awards academic scholarships to students in 10 Central Texas counties: Bandera, Blanco, Edwards, Gillespie, Kendall, Kerr, Kimble, Mason, Real and Uvalde.

Staff & Leadership

The Community Foundation’s leadership is uniquely qualified to oversee the philanthropic endowments of the Hill Country, and everyone supports the Foundation’s long-standing tradition of excellence in governance, stability, and fiduciary responsibility.


Austin-website photo

Austin Dickson - austin@communityfoundation.net

Chief Executive Officer
Austin has led the Community Foundation since 2017. Prior to joining the Foundation, Austin lived in Atlanta, Georgia, where he led several nonprofits addressing poverty issues. He also worked for the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. A Waco, Texas, native and TCU graduate, Austin earned master’s degrees in religion from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and Emory University. He also holds a master’s in public policy from Georgia Tech. Since 2008, Austin has also been a college professor; he currently teaches nonprofit leadership to graduate students at Emory. Austin serves on the Community Foundations National Standards Board. More locally, he serves on the Board of Directors for the Upper Guadalupe River Authority and the KLRN Endowment Fund, which supports the region's PBS station. Austin and his family are owned by three dogs: a Labrador Retriever, a Rat Terrier, and a Brittany.

Amy Rector - amy@communityfoundation.net

Business Manager
A native of Lubbock, Texas, Amy was raised in Phoenix, Arizona. She graduated from Northern Arizona University with a degree in hospitality management, and she worked in the hotel industry for many years in California, Arizona, and New Mexico. Since 2004, Amy has served as the Community Foundation’s business manager. She and her husband, Riley, have two daughters, two dogs, and too many chickens. They are heavily involved with 4-H, camping and outdoor fun, and raising award-winning goats for shows throughout Central and South Texas – no kidding!
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Jayne Zirkel

Marketing and Events Manager
Jayne has led the Community Foundation’s marketing and communications efforts since 2011. A Kerrville native and Tivy High School graduate, Jayne attended Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She lived in Waco for many years after college working as a youth minister at Central United Methodist Church. Jayne and her husband, Dave, have three children. If the Zirkels aren’t at a Friday night football game, then they might be at a weekend soccer tournament, or they could be at a basketball practice, or they’re en route from one event to another. Regardless, there’s always Gatorade in the car.

Ingrid Cunyus

Grants and Scholarships Manager
Born in San Saba, Texas, Ingrid graduated high school and college in Lubbock, where she earned her BBA in finance from Texas Tech before moving to Dallas. She has worked in finance and administration for corporate and nonprofit organizations throughout her career. Ingrid has managed competitive grant programs and scholarships for the Community Foundation since 2017. She has lived in Kerrville with her husband Stuart and son Zach since 1996. Other members of their family include three dogs, Bella, Zoe, and Hunter, and one cat, Missy. An animal advocate and avid reader, Ingrid also enjoys exercising and hiking in the Hill Country.

Meet the Trustees

The Community Foundation is governed by a 13-member Board of Trustees. The Board is comprised of volunteer leaders from across the Hill Country. Trustees serve three-year terms that are renewable once.

Tina Woods - President

Tina works part-time at Creations, a fabric shop. She’s recently retired as Executive Director of the Dietert Center after 16 years.

Peter Lewis Vice President

Peter has maintained an architectural practice - Peter Lewis Architects & Associates - for over 30 years. He has served on numerous nonprofit boards; currently he is serving on the Habitat for Humanity board.

Gilbert Paiz Treasurer

Gilberto, a native of San Antonio, has been a financial advisor in Kerrville for over 25 years. He is co-founder of Texas Hill Country Advisors.

Judy Hutcherson - Secretary

Judy is a retired RN; however, in retirement she's served as a Rotary District Governor and regularly volunteers for medical missions with Misión De Candelilla.

Karol Schreiner - Member at Large

Karol has been involved in ranching much of her life and a longtime champion of Kerr County.

Sonny Baldwin

Sonny is a retired banker and cattle rancher. He has served on numerous Kerr County nonprofit boards.

Patti Berkstresser

Caroline Eidson

Ronnie Jung

Carl Luckenbach

A retired commercial insurance professional, Carl serves on various local boards, is a Master gardener, avid traveler, and the grandson of the original Luckenbachs, the namesakes of the internationally famous Gillespie County town.

JR Rust

U.S. Air Force Colonel Rust (Ret.) is Director of Flight Training for Amentum DynCorp Aviation. He lives in the historic King William neighborhood in San Antonio and has a family ranch near Waring.

Sheri Rutledge

Sheri has been a well known leader in Uvalde for over 25 years. She has raised millions of dollars for local causes, especially Uvalde Memorial Hospital; she currently directs Kate Marmion Rides to Radiation, a nonprofit helping oncology patients.

Lisa Sanchez

Carleton Turner

Carleton is the retired Sergeant at Arms of the Texas Senate. He now lives in Fredericksburg and grows grapes for various local vintners.



The Community Foundation achieves its mission by working its strategic plan. Below is a synopsis of its overall strategy; to read the complete plan, click here.

Community Change

Through thoughtful allocation and investment as well as aggressive leveraging of additional resources, the Foundation will significantly contribute to a thriving Texas Hill Country. The Community Foundation realizes community change through grantmaking, nonprofit development, community leadership, and resource development.


Continual communication to stakeholders about the mission, vision, services, and impact of the Foundation supports its other strategic priorities and develops a culture of philanthropy in the Hill Country. The Community Foundation develops educated awareness through transparency, thoroughness, and consistency in its communications as well as through its leadership.

Organizational Excellence

With operational excellence, cost efficiencies are realized, stakeholders have positive experiences, and the Foundation demonstrates it’s the trusted community steward it’s expected to be. The Community Foundation achieves organizational excellence by demonstrating superior customer service, legal compliance, an efficient and effective working environment, and technology-driven management and administrative practices.

Resource Development

The Foundation’s assets will continue to grow with solid relationship building and prudent investment management – we grow to have even greater impact on the Hill Country in perpetuity.

Financials & Reports

Our dedication to fiscal responsibility, transparency, and stewardship has resulted in our being entrusted with several hundred charitable funds.

We are stewards of donor intentions and beholden to the Hill Country communities we serve. All funds are efficiently managed, balancing short- and long-term goals, in accordance with their specific missions.

The Community Foundation is accredited by Community Foundations National Standards, and it holds a four-star ranking from Charity Navigator.

Financial Statements

As a public charity, the Community Foundation operates in the public view and for the public interest. Its federal tax returns and audited financial statements are available upon request. Below are the five most recent audits and filed Form 990.

The Foundation is accredited by Community Foundations National Standards, the certification program for U.S. community foundations. National Standards accreditation signifies that the Foundation has met 26 rigorous standards that exceed federal and state regulations and that the Foundation is operating with accountability and excellence.

Annual Reports

Investment Strategy

The Community Foundation is a respected fiscal manager of charitable funds, bequests, trusts, and other complex financial instruments. We take a thoughtful approach to diversification in order to mitigate risk, eschew volatility, and identify opportunities that add value. Donors may also set up customized investment management through partnership with their advisor and the Foundation.


The Community Foundation responds to the charitable needs of Hill Country communities and therefore manages its funds in such manner as to support current and future needs. The Foundation's Investment Committee oversees this work.

Investment Committee Members

Karol Schreiner, Chair
Community Volunteer

Molly Adams
Security State Bank & Trust

Sonny Baldwin
Community Volunteer

Austin Dickson (Ex Oficio)
Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country

Charlie Givens
Davidson, Freedle, Espenhover & Overby, P.C.

Mark Haufler
Wells Fargo Bank

Strategy & Targets

The Community Foundation requires a total rate of return in a range of 4% to 6%, net of fees and inflation, within the Foundation’s 20-quarter investment time horizon.


The Community Foundation sets long-term asset allocation ranges and reviews them with regularity. Rebalancing of the allocation of assets is considered at least annually to ensure they are within the Foundation’s investment policy guidelines.

The asset allocation strategy below meets the Foundation’s current needs.

Asset Allocation Parameters: 

50-65% Equities
25-40% Fixed Income
0-20% Alternative Investments
1-20% Cash


Since 1981, the Community Foundation has served as a public charitable institution dedicated to improving the lives and realizing the philanthropic visions of the people of the Texas Hill Country. We are committed to a policy of openness and transparency, and our governance and policy documents – including Internal Revenue Service verification of our 501(c)(3) public charity status, articles of incorporation, bylaws, and others – are available to the public.

IRS Determination Letter

Restated ByLaws with Amendments

Articles of Incorporation

Privacy Policy




City of Kerrville, TX - City Hall Announces:


The City of Kerrville on Tuesday recognized The Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country with the Aug. 25, 2020 Kerrville Kindness Award. The Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country, a public charitable foundation created by and for residents of the Texas Hill Country, has been instrumental in the facilitation and distribution of funds created to address the needs of area individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Foundation oversees the Kerrville Utility Kindness fund, the Hill Country Strong fund and the Kerrville Food Relief fund, all of which have directly eased some of the suffering caused locally by the worldwide virus.

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