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Three area residents have joined the board of directors of the Hatboro-Horsham Educational Foundation, an independent organization partnered with the Hatboro-Horsham School District to enhance and enrich the classroom experience.

“We are thrilled to announce the addition of these three new board members,” said HHEF Executive Director Laurie Rosard. “They all have demonstrated a keen interest in supporting the mission of HHEF, as well as in enriching the educational experience of our students.”

Elected to the board were Jim Knopf of Horsham and Jennifer Partelow of North Wales. Kelley Winters of Horsham is the Hatboro-Horsham School Board’s representative on the Foundation’s board.

Each called HHEF’s work “vital.”

“I was impressed with what I saw HHEF doing in terms of community events, and wanted to help where I could,” said Knopf, whose background is in client relationship management and whose daughter is a 2009 Hatboro-Horsham High School graduate. “The work of HHEF is central to the success of the students in the district.”

Knopf pointed to the organization’s sponsorship of big-name speakers like oceanographer Robert Ballard, scientist Bill Nye and former First Lady Barbara Bush.

“The programs afforded the students are unique and would not be in place if not for HHEF,” he said. “Working closely with the students and teachers makes this a win-win situation.”

Partelow, a 1988 Hatboro-Horsham High graduate and co-owner of AB 8 Waste Solutions, learned of the foundation’s work after participating in a March 2009 HHEF initiative to have students collect and recycle plastic bottles in conjunction with a scheduled appearance by environmental photographer and eco-ambassador Chris Jordan.

‘The more I became involved and the more I learned of HHEF’s grants and projects for students, teachers and the community, the more I wanted to do for the Foundation,” said Partelow, also a member of the Rotary Club of Central Bucks and the Central Bucks Chamber of Commerce.

Winters has been a member of the Hatboro-Horsham School Board since December.

“I have always admired HHEF’s role and work,” said Winters, whose children this year were in 12th, 9th and 6th grades in the district. “Having a school board member on the Foundation’s board provides an additional layer of communication and involvement with the district.”

Winters said HHEF-backed events and programs touch all grade levels.

“HHEF awarded educational grants totaling close to $100,000 in 2009-10 and has plans to do so in the new school year,” she said.

Founded in 1987, HHEF’s mission is to secure funding from various sources to be used to enhance the education provided to the students by the district. The nonprofit organization has funded numerous innovative programs that complement the district’s curriculum.

For more information about HHEF, visit www.hhef.org.

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Jon Viscounte, second from left, president of the Hatboro-Horsham Educational Foundation Board of Directors, goes over a meeting agenda with new board members, from left, Jim Knopf, Jennifer Partelow, and Kelley Winters.