WILLMAR -- The Willmar Area Community Foundation will present the Marv Otto Award for the first time in memory of Viola Ausherman. A retired elementary teacher, Ausherman's $400,000 endowment gift helped launch the Willmar Area Community Foundation in 1998.
She was a founding member of the Humane Society of Kandiyohi County, now known as the Humane Society of Kandiyohi and Meeker Counties.
The Marv Otto Award, established in 2009, is given in honor of the late Marv Otto, resident of New London and Atwater, for his everlasting estate gift to benefit the people and causes in Kandiyohi County communities.
The award recognizes an individual or couple who personifies Otto's spirit and strengthens the community with an endowment or irrevocable estate gift.
Ausherman died at age 96 in November 2011. Her permanently endowed fund benefits six designated charities: Alano-Kandiyohi County, Willmar; North Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Pelican Rapids; Rice Hospice, Willmar; Colorado State University, Veterinary Science Department, Fort Collins; Woodland Centers, Willmar; Ridgewater College Veterinary Medical Assistant; and the Humane Society of Kandiyohi County, Willmar.