Pickburn Memorial Fund for Wildlife

Carrying out a legacy

“It seems like every time we were in need, the Pickburn Memorial Fund was there to help,” said Hannah Brenner, Development Manager of Hawk Creek Wildlife Center.

Born in 1948, Barbara Pickburn developed a love of animals and wildlife at a young age, a passion that would inspire her generosity for years to come.

She and her husband, Alfred, settled down in Clarence, and Barbara worked as a stenographer for the University at Buffalo’s University Development department for more than 25 years.

Barbara knew she wanted to give back to the community she called home, and also continue to support her lifelong passion of caring for animals after her lifetime. 

To do so, she became a member of the Community Foundation’s Legacy Society, created to acknowledge individuals who have committed to supporting the community in the future through a planned gift. As such, when Barbara passed away in 2002, she bequeathed a gift to the Community Foundation.

According to her wishes, the Pickburn Memorial Fund for Wildlife was established in 2003 to support nonprofits whose primary objectives are to care for, shelter, preserve and enhance the environment, habitat, health and general well-being of animals and wildlife.

Through her fund, Barbara has been able to support organizations such as Hawk Creek Wildlife Center, which aims to inspire minds to become environmental stewards and conserve wildlife to fulfill the circle of life for generations to come.

Over the years, the fund has helped Hawk Creek hire its first paid staff member, secure vehicles, teach programs, build kits to help teachers educate about wildlife, and feed its animals.

Twenty years after her lifetime, Barbara remains a friend to the animals and wildlife that were so important to her.

“The Pickburn Memorial Fund has helped push us forward so we could make more of an impact,” noted Hannah.

This story is featured in our 2022 Annual Report.