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Kern County scholarship fund receives 'historic' $5.5 million gift

College Money, Scholarships (AP FILE)
Posted at 11:14 AM, Aug 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-11 14:14:50-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Oscar and Libbie Rudnick Scholarship Fund was begun in 2012 as a way to provide educational opportunities for students in Kern County. Now thanks to a "historic" gift over $5.5 million the fund will be able to dramatically increase those opportunities.

The fund, which is operated by the Kern Community Foundation, was established in the memory of Elynor Rudnick Falk by her husband Dr. David Falk. The fund is named after Oscar and Libbie Rudnick, the parents of Elynor. According to a statement from the Kern County Foundation, Oscar and Libbie Rudnick "immigrated to the United States of America to escape persecution and oppression in Czarist Russia. Settling in Kem County, they raised a family and through hard work, talent, and skill, established an agribusiness industry of major importance to the economy of Kern County. Dr. and Mrs. Falk were lifelong philanthropists."

In August, the Kern Community Foundation received the $5.5 million gift following the passing of Dr. Falk. It is the single largest donation ever given to the Foundation.

"My first impression of Dr. Falk was just how inspired he was to make a real difference in the lives of young people in memory of his late wife and in-laws. His enthusiasm was infectious and one of the reasons Kern Community Foundation was able to draw additional scholarship support from the College Futures Foundation, the family of the late David K. Moore, and several others," said Foundation past president and CEO, Jeff Pickering in the statement.

Kern Community Foundation manages over three dozen scholarship funds. Students can learn more about the scholarships or apply on the foundation's website.