Al Bean had a vision: a foundation that was rooted in community stewardship and worked collaboratively with others to identify opportunities, design solutions, and implement change that would benefit children, families and all residents of Jefferson County.

The foundation serves Jefferson County and the Warm Springs Reservation. Its focus has traditionally been on fostering recreation, education, culture, and the arts. More recently, it has dedicated resources to fostering increased broadband capacity and connectivity in Jefferson County to benefit residents, businesses and organization. 

Founded with a entrepreneurial  spirit, the foundation manages its own investments and seeks to strategically increase the impact of its collaborative relationships and donations of land, funds, and time.

Our Values


An abiding pledge to trust, honor, and respect our communities and engage others in service is an investment in the greater good of the community and ensures Jefferson County’s proud heritage for future generations.


Communities are stronger together. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential to the fullest realization of our collective endeavors.


Building on community assets  and working collaborative creates opportunities to more fully realize the potential of the venture and the engagement of all involved.


A generous mind, an able body, and a spirit of service cultivate generosity, inclusivity, humility, selflessness, and compassion. These enduring qualities inspire service to others.


Our History


Al Bean and his wife, Velva, grew to love Jefferson County, Oregon and it’s diversity of culture. While Al and his wife were not blessed with children, their passion for family, faith, health and education were manifested by the donation of land and resources to their church, the local library and the start up of a new local hospital.


When his wife passed, Mr. Bean started a small foundation with a cash gift of $10,000 and six acres of land. His directions were simple: work together with government, citizens, businesses, service clubs and other foundations because together you can achieve more than working alone. Secondly, focus upon the quality of life for children, young adults and young families.

Within a year, Bean Park was built. The park was constructed using his model of collaboration and to this day it continues to realize his goal.

Before his death, Mr. Bean donated 5 residences and 400 acres of real estate to the foundation. These assets have been instrumental in building Jefferson County. Middle School, COCC’s Madras Campus, Madras Aquatic Center, three additional community parks, the St. Charles Madras health campus, several other community features.

Mr. Bean’s Legacy – it is found in well being of the children, the smiles of its residence, and the passion community at large to continually improve for the future. 


Our Mission

Our mission is to serve as a community steward for the people of Jefferson County, Oregon and the Warm Springs Indian Reservation. This means bringing together diverse interests to leverage, connect and invest resources in order to create greater recreational, educational, cultural and artistic opportunities. Our goal is to encourage, inspire and empower all who live here—especially the children, families and young adults—to have fuller, more rewarding lives and contribute to the greater good.


Our Vision

The Bean Foundation envisions a healthy community – healthy in mind, body, and spirit; where people care about one another and value each other’s cultures and traditions; where opportunities to grow and prosper abound and where people eagerly contribute to the greater good.


Community in Action

The mission of the Bean Foundation is to stimulate and assist in the creation of opportunities that enhance the quality of life in the areas of recreation, education, culture and arts for the residents of Jefferson County, Oregon. The primary focus of the Foundation is to serve children, families and young adults. The Foundation values enduring projects and innovative partnerships that demonstrate outstanding stewardship which will build our community.

The Bean Foundation Board



With a strong commitment to stewardship, George has served the region for more than 40 years as a lawyer, judge, and community leader. Well-grounded in a family tradition of serving others, he works with families from all walks of life and cultures.

George fosters Mr. Bean’s values of working cooperatively across private and public boundaries to help create better lives for children and families. He does this by working with others to make sound investments in projects that no one group can tackle alone. Because of his leadership and community stewardship, new entities like a local community college, park and recreation district, early childhood center and more have been created.

George Neilson



Jack has been a Jefferson County community member for more than 40 years. He has been a business owner and leader working across local social, economic, and cultural boundaries to support the innovative development of Bean Foundation investments.

Jack operated a successful dentist practice for more than 30 years, which gave him unique opportunities to engage with all sectors of Jefferson County and the Warm Springs Reservation. His insights into the needs of people and how to ensure sound investment practices foster his dedication to advancing the Bean Foundation into perpetuity.

George Neilson



Clint is an Oregon State University Professor Emeritus with more than 50 years of agriculture, community, and youth development experience. He recently received OSU’s Diamond Pioneer Award for his many years of dedicated service to OSU, agriculture and this community.

Clint’s administrative experience, background with eco-systems, and knowledge gained from working with diverse cultures brings a unique strength to the Bean Foundation. He understands the complexities communities face today and the resources needed to develop innovative solutions.

Clint’s history of bringing diverse interests together for the common good continues to be a powerful asset in making sound Bean Foundation investments.

George Neilson



Mr. Hertel is the owner of State Farm Insurance and Financial Services and a valued member of the Jefferson County community for his leadership in building the region’s social capital.

In addition to his business leadership, Jason collaborates directly with community organizations, building networks to leverage and multiply local assets. He and his family work diligently to improve the community’s quality of life by building shared agendas and discovering innovative ways to engage younger generations to embrace service as a way of life.

George Neilson



Ronica is an elementary classroom teacher with more than 20 years of experience living and working with the diverse cultures of Jefferson County and Warm Springs. She has a deep understanding of youth and family needs and at the same time the richness they bring to the community.

Ronica’s approach to investing the Bean Foundation’s assets has contributed to building quality programs and experiences for organizations receiving funding and the people they serve.

George Neilson