The Harford Community College Foundation held its annual donor recognition dinner for members in the President's Circle of Giving on Thursday, September 12 at Maryland Golf & Country Clubs. The President's Circle Dinner gives the Foundation the opportunity to express gratitude to the individuals, businesses and organizations that support the College with gifts throughout the year. 

This year, the Foundation established the O'Connell Society to honor a core group of donors whose lifetime giving totals $50,000 or more. Named for the late Dr. Alfred C. O'Connell, a former HCC president known for spearheading growth and championing academic rigor, the new leadership giving society recognizes the deep commitment businesses and individuals have for the institution and its students. 

To commemorate the prestigious accomplishment of the inaugural 51 donors, individuals were presented with a scarf or tie bearing the O'Connell Society seal and businesses with an inscribed plaque.

Dr. Dianna G. Phillips, President of HCC, spoke to the impact that such a prestigious group has on the community, saying "Your remarkable kindness and generosity are a true inspiration: you inspire me to lead with that same kindness and generosity—and you inspire our students to reach their full potential." Each member was congratulated by Dr. Phillips as well as Denise Dregier, Director of the Harford Community College Foundation and Marlene Lieb, chair of the Harford Community College Foundation Board of Directors.

The President's Circle Dinner included remarks from George Strawbridge, a student at HCC and recipient of the George S. and Francis M. Hopkins Memorial Scholarship. Addressing the room of 150, Strawbridge expressed his appreciation stating, "I can tell you the story of how you helped me a thousand times, but I think that when you consider the unwritten story of how you have already helped whomever I end up helping in the future, you really gain insight into the true magnitude of the impact you make on the world when you contribute to even just one student." A perfect summation of the ripple effect that the gift of education makes within the community.

In addition to scholarships, the Foundation receives gifts for a variety of student success initiatives, including equipment and technology, emergency assistance, and textbook fees. For information regarding the Harford Community College Foundation, visit