Founder's Message

Virginia Gilmore

Welcome to the Sophia Foundation, Inc. in Fond du Lac, WI.  “Sophia” means wisdom, and since 2002, our Board of Directors has worked together to access our collective wisdom to determine the best ways we can serve our vision of “Creating Caring Community.  To best live our mission to support and nurture the spirit and dignity of all people through compassionate transformative leadership, the Sophia Foundation is dedicated to providing education to support community growth and change with leaders in our community.  Dialogue, Compassionate Listening, Servant Leadership, and Systems Thinking, the operating principles of the Sophia Foundation, are core elements of the educational programs provided through the Foundation.

For our communities to more openly and caringly address our needs and opportunities in this challenging time of growing needs and diminishing funding sources to support solutions to meeting those needs, it is essential that we prepare to have a different kind of conversation; together.  Learning to listen and really hear another person is the greatest gift one can give another person.  It is the essence of calling forth and hearing this wisdom that holds the creative possibilities we all yearn for and need.  As we prepare to better listen and better understand one another in our differences and dreams, we prepare to access that greater wisdom that lies within the citizens of our own community.

The Sophia Foundation is providing this kind of learning about leadership in a way that is unique and different from other leadership programs today.   We support people to lead from a place of heart personally, in families, in organizations, and in community.  The best, most sustainable, most caring ways we can grow and interact as a community is from a place of goodness, promise and possibility that comes from the hearts and minds within our own community of citizens.   

It is an honor to work with the FDL Area Community Foundation to create and develop the Sophia Foundation, and to work with such dedicated board members to continue to clarify our role and responsibility to honor the wisdom within each of us.  May we continue to find ways to inspirationally and impactfully call this wisdom forth to best serve ways of being caring, creative and compassionate human beings in relationship to each other and our community.   

Virginia L Gilmore, Founder