Bob and Betty Hellman are bringing their passion for youth athletics and love of Waterloo together through the establishment of the Hellman Family Fund at the Waterloo Community Foundation. Their Fund will benefit youth athletics, including facilities, throughout the city to ensure future generations have thriving programs to enjoy. Betty says, “Our wish is that this Fund will provide the boys and girls in the Cedar Valley the opportunity to play sports and to learn from teamwork.”
Youth athletics, especially baseball, has been a lifelong interest for Bob. Growing up on the east side of Waterloo near the current location of Dr. Walter Cunningham School for Excellence, he has many fond memories of playing little league baseball in the community. After many years of playing and watching, he wants to share his passion with others and has spent his retirement ensuring kids have the same opportunities to enjoy and learn from the game as he did.
After a successful career as Founder and Chairman of Hellman, a Waterloo advertising agency, Bob wanted to give back to the game he loves. An opportunity arose to build a ball field near his childhood home at the Dr. Walter Cunningham School for Excellence. The completion of Hellman Field sparked excitement in the community, and Bob was inspired to develop high-quality ballparks in other needed areas. He founded Build Our Ballpark, an organization that builds and refurbishes baseball and softball fields in largely low-income neighborhoods. In the 14 years since it was established, Build Our Ballpark has built or restored 59 playing fields in 13 communities and three states. 18 of these projects were in Waterloo.
Bob and Betty established the Hellman Family Fund to continue investing in the city of Waterloo both now and for future generations. The Hellman family believes that youth who participate in athletic programs learn important values that serve them well for a lifetime. “Having been involved with little league baseball from its inception in 1947 and experiencing the great times this sport provided, we are pleased to be supporters in any way we can to help young men and women experience the thrills I did many years ago,” said Bob.
If you are interested in learning more about leaving your legacy by investing in the future of Waterloo, contact the Waterloo Community Foundation at 319-883-6022 or wloocommunityfoundation.org.