Bernard Daly’s will, signed just 10 days before his death on January 6, 1920, not only established the scholarship, it also established the basis for its successful operation for almost a century.

“It is my earnest desire to help, aid and assist worthy and ambitious young men and women of my beloved county of Lake, to acquire a good education, so that they may be the better fitted and qualified to appreciate and help to preserve the laws and constitution of this free country, defend its flag, and by their conduct as good citizens reflect honor on Lake County and the State Oregon.”

The scholarship was limited to high school graduates from Lake County. As such, it was one of America’s first place-based scholarships. It’s noteworthy that he specifically intended the scholarship for both young men and women in a time when relatively few women went to college. For the first several decades, most of the scholarship recipients were young women. In the above passage from his will, Bernard Daly emphasizes his belief in the connection between education and citizenship.

Use of interest on the fund for scholarships to Oregon colleges.

“I now direct and will that any and all income from said Bernard Daly Education Fund except only such amounts as may be necessary to satisfy the bequests set forth in this will and the expenses of administration, be used, payed out and applied by the trustees hereinafter named, from year to year such as income accrues, in educating worthy young men and women of Lake County, Oregon, in the schools, colleges and technical schools of the state of Oregon, bearing all their expenses through school, if necessary, until their education is completed; such students to be recommended by the County Judge and School Superintendent of Lake County, Oregon, their recommendation, however, not to be binding on my trustees.”

At a time when endowed scholarships were rare, the Daly Fund was established to operate in perpetuity, spending only the interest earnings of the endowment.

Composition of the Daly Educational Fund Board of Trustees.

2018 Trustee Meeting

“… the Board of Trustees, hereinafter appointed, to be known and designated as the Board of Trustees of theBernard Daly Educational Fund, to serve without pay, other than actual and necessary traveling expenses in executing the duties of their trust. I nominate, constitute and appoint the persons constituting the Board of Directors of the said Bank of Lakeview, the president of Oregon Agricultural College, located at Corvallis, Oregon, and the president of the University of Oregon, located at Eugene, Oregon, and their successors perpetually, trustees of said Bernard Daly Educational Fund; that is to say when one member of said Board of Trustees shall die or otherwise become disqualified to act, his successor in office either as director of said bank, or president of either of said colleges, as the case may be, shall take his place and act as trustee of said Bernard Daly Educational Fund.”

The composition of the Board of Trustees assured an openness and transparency that has been sustained for about a century. When I attended the 2016 Trustee meeting, representatives of every one of Oregon’s six public universities and the community college system participated as voting members.

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