In 1988, the Rancho Bernardo Community Council determined that a local civic organization should be created so that donations to the Council's projects could be deemed tax deductible to the donors. The founding Board of Directors of the Rancho Bernardo Community Foundation (RBCF) were Bob McMillin, President, Bob Wells, Vice-President, Gina McBride, Secretary, Dick McNeal, Treasurer and Chris Leucke. Its only purpose was to make Rancho Bernardo an even better place to live and work.
As this group became more successful, it became apparent that to become a viable, long term asset to the RB community, an endowment fund should be established. Proceeds from that endowment fund would then provide funds for nonprofit community activities in Rancho Bernardo for decades into the future.
In 1993, in the first organized effort to raise endowment funds, the RBCF established the "Pathway of Pride". Anyone donating $1,000 or more to the foundation’s endowment would have an engraved granite plaque, commemorating their donation, set permanently in the concrete walkway around the lake in our beautiful Webb Park.
Other programs established to add to the RBCF endowment soon followed, including an annual community cruise and an annual Thanksgiving Community Luncheon. With the cruises, the foundation works with a local travel agent and major cruise line, whereby the RBCF receives a donation from them both for each cabin sold. To date, about $50,000 has been earned in that manner with great future expectations. The annual Thanksgiving Community luncheon has added about $100,000 to the foundation, with half of that amount going to the endowment and half being distributed to nonprofits serving Rancho Bernardo
In 1996, the Rancho Bernardo Community Foundation decided to invest its money with The San Diego Foundation in order to assure donors that their money is invested in a professional manner far into the future.