For 2020, Board Member Mr. Richard Northrup has again conveyed the renewal of support. Through the years, this support has been very effective in helping to gather novel pilot data that in turn has led to NIH, NIDRR and NIDILRR support for major projects. At this point, funds will be used to enhance adapted/accessible cognitive assessment research, novel assessment strategies for early identification, as well as studies of the mental health needs of people with cerebral palsy.
Mildred E. Swanson was a career woman at an unlikely time. Born in 1912, she graduated from high school at age 16 with the distinction of valedictorian. One of the first employees of Owens Corning, Toledo, Ohio, she retired as manager of the payroll department after 40 years of service. “Mildred was an amazing lady,” says great nephew Richard C. Northrup, III, a U-M alumnus who resides in Ann Arbor, Michigan. “Unlike many women of her period, Mildred did not marry nor have children. She was a true businesswoman on a career path.” True to Ms. Swanson’s enormous spirit of generosity, she established the Mildred E. Swanson Foundation through her estate plan with the dual mission of funding medical research and higher education scholarships— both dear to her heart. Following Ms. Swanson’s death, the Foundation was funded in 2004 and is managed by advisors Mr. Northrup, great nephew Michael J. Giesecke, a U-M alumnus, and nephew John R. Giesecke.