A grant from the Bender Scientific Fund helped a local school purchase equipment.


The nation's first independent medical lab, Bender Hygienic Laboratory served the Capital Region for 102 years.  During that time, Bender provided laboratory services to area hospitals, conducted public health and environmental testing, and served as a resource in forensic medicine and a training facility for pathologists and technologists.

In 1997, Bender merged with the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at St. Peter's Hospital to form Bender-St. Peter's Laboratory.  At that time, Bender donated its equipment and business to the hospital.  What remained were $1.6 million in liquid assets, which were donated to the Community Foundation to establish the Bender Scientific Fund in 2002.  The Fund's purpose is to make grants to programs that support and promote discovery and development in medicine, science, and technology in the Capital District. 

Had the $1.6 million been spent in 2002, undoubtedly it would have had a substantial impact on the community; but compare that scenario to the local benefit our community continues to realize because this gift was used to establish an endowed fund:

  • Since 2002, the Fund has distributed more than $500,000 to support research and educational projects in public health, laboratory medicine, and forensic medicine
  • Due to the Community Foundation's careful stewardship and investment, the Fund's balance has grown to $2.2 million
  • The Fund will continue to grow and make grants, forever

Thanks to the power of endowment, the legacy and mission of the Bender Hygienic Laboratory will continue to benefit the community for generations to come.  At the Community Foundation, generosity never loses its value.