New fund to support Town of Henderson memorializes Frances Powers (May 2014)

By Katie Crumpler, NCCF Northern Piedmont regional associate

The Frances Abbot Burton Powers Fund for support of the Town of Henderson has been established with the North Carolina Community Foundation, according to Preston Powers, her husband.

Frances Abbot Burton Powers was a native of Henderson. When she passed away in 2012, many said that she truly never met a stranger and anyone fortunate enough to come in contact with her could not help but be caught up in her enthusiasm and positive outlook on life. Frances attended Henderson High School, graduated from Hollins Preparatory School, attended Converse College and graduated from Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore. While at Peabody, she was chosen to audition for a role in the movie, “Gone With the Wind.” She was a member of the first Girl Scout troop in Henderson and a lifelong member of First Baptist Church. Frances was active in politics and as a lifelong Democrat, was close friends with Lady Bird Johnson and maintained ties with her cousin, former President Jimmy Carter.

The endowment set up in her memory will make grant funds available for government entities and nonprofit organizations that benefit the Town of Henderson and have a physical location in Henderson.  Grants typically range from $5,000 to $15,000. A board of advisors will determine grant awards. Applications are available online here from June 17 through July 18. All organizations will be notified by the end of July. For further information, contact Katie Crumpler at or 919-256-6914