Operation Round Up Contributes to The Bainbridge Alumni Scholarship


Greencastle, IN – On behalf of Hendricks Power Cooperative and its members, a $1,000 donation was made to the Bainbridge High School Alumni Scholarship Endowment fund. The awarded scholarships support continued education efforts to students that have attended Bainbridge Elementary and graduated from North Putnam High School.
One special resident knows first-hand the importance of the Bainbridge Scholarship. Less than a year after experiencing unexplained neurological issues that left him unable to walk, Rick Johnston found himself under financial pressures when his daughter Lauren graduated from North Putnam High School. When faced with the ever-rising costs of a college education, Johnston, better known as the Bearded Painter, was relieved when Lauren received the local scholarship. Thanks to the extra support, Lauren has been able to study Agricultural Education at Purdue University.
“Sending Lauren to college would have been very difficult without the scholarship.” Johnston says, “I knew I wanted to pay it forward.”
Throughout his road to recovery from neurological issues, Johnston’s therapist suggested he try painting to help with tactile function, as he couldn’t write his name. Despite appreciating the arts, Johnston wasn’t artistically gifted, saying, “I couldn’t draw a stick figure! I doodled, but by no stretch of the imagination could I draw.”
After giving it a shot, Johnston and his whole family were shocked to find that he could not only paint, but he was very talented. Before long, the Bearded Painter was known worldwide for his work and his story had been featured in People Magazine and even Facebook.
Paying to forward to the program that helped his daughter receive her college education, Johnston partnered with the Bainbridge Alumni Endowment to spread awareness and facilitate additional donations. He’s painted a likeness of Bainbridge High School, which will be showcased at the Putnam Community Foundation with a plaque recognizing fellow donors.  
"Contributing to programs like the Bainbridge Scholarship Endowment ensures that our members and residents have the opportunity to further their education." said Dana Cochran, Director of Marketing & Member Engagement at Hendricks Power Cooperative. "There’s truly no better advocate for this cause than Rick Johnston. He’s set a great example, showing students that you can overcome any adversity.”

If you would like to contribute to the Bainbridge High School Alumni Scholarship Endowment, please contact Carolyn Hiser at carolyn.hiser@gmail.com or call (317) 752-3046
Operation Round-Up is a voluntary fundraising program that lets members round-up their energy bill to the next whole dollar- the difference is then deposited into the Hendricks Power Cooperative Operation Round-Up Fund which is held at the Hendricks County Community Foundation. Together, Hendricks Power and the Community Foundation determine the most appropriate uses to benefit the community. Anyone interested in receiving funds for the good of the community can contact us for our guidelines and an application. 

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