Guided by their continuing devotion to Sunset High School, their recognition of a glaring need on the part of deserving Sunset
students, and their desire to create a perpetual mechanism for responding to the need, four Sunset graduates provided the
impetus for the creation of the Foundation.
In 1993, during the 40th reunion of the Class of '53 of Sunset, Joe Brooks, one of the Class members, offered to make
a $5,000 scholarship contribution if the Class of '53 would match the gift. These funds would be used to start a permanently
endowed scholarship fund, with the income generated being used to award college scholarships to future deserving graduates
Lee H. Smith, Class of '53, committed to lead efforts to match the $5,000 challenge gift. The Class of '53 responded
generously, quickly meeting and exceeding the challenge.
Jerry G. Wilson, Class of '54 and James W. Rutledge, Class of '55, heard about the project and quickly committed to attempt
to supplement any scholarship funds raised by the Class of 1953. Based on this immediate success, Lee, Jerry, and James decided
to involve other Sunset classes and to form a foundation to ensure perpetual and proper management of the endowment fund.
As a result, The Sunset Foundation came into existence!
Next: Early Excitement