Online scholarship fund raises more than $10,000 for future photographers

By Anne Halliwell

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The Kernel Press Inc. started a fund on Friday to memorialize late photo editor Jonathan Krueger.

The annual scholarship will be awarded to a promising Kernel photographer by the Kernel Board.

The scholarship’s online GoFundMe account raised more than $14,200 by press time Sunday night.

Jonathan Palmer, a former Kentucky Kernel photographer, said he and his wife Danielle Palmer, a former Kernel writer, set up the account to make it easier for students and young people to donate.

“The overwhelming outpouring of support has been great,” Palmer said. “We hoped, but you obviously don’t expect it to take off that way.”

The GoFundMe raised a little more than $8,000 in the first 24 hours.

“Being able to preserve his legacy seems like the best thing we can do,” Palmer said.

Duane Bonifer, chairman of Kernel Press Inc., said that although the fundraising and planning is still preliminary, he may speak to the Kernel Board about awarding the first scholarship in the fall of 2015.

“The thought is that this is a great way to memorialize his life and contributions,” Bonifer said. “It helps future generations of photographers.”

Typically an endowment scholarship takes a year, as it needs to be invested and generate interest that will fund the award, Bonifer said.

But as a $10,000 endowment fund can usually expect to generate about $500 annually, Bonifer said it may be available for the next school year.

The general rule of thumb, he said, is that the scholarship will be up to five percent of the lump sum raised.

So the amount received by each photographer will depend on the amount of money raised, he added, though the hope is that with each year, the contributions to the fund will grow and the scholarship will increase.

“The minimum is that $10,000,” Bonifer said. “The maximum is limited by the generosity of people who want to give.”

Because the donations’ interest actually pays for the scholarships, Bonifer said that the scholarship could remain active for generations to come.

“That’s the great thing about scholarships — they last in perpetuity,” Bonifer said. “Theoretically, you always have that money there to support that cause.”