About the Foundation

The Stephen Shane Fincher Memorial Foundation (“Foundation”), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, was founded in 2009 following the unexpected passing of Steve Fincher, a “larger than life” graduate of the North Carolina State University School of Engineering and custom builder in the Raleigh community.

Its mission is to inspire youth in Cumberland County Schools in the fields of mathematics, science, and engineering, to promote the development of values-based leaders, and to provide scholarship funds to students attending post-secondary schools in the state of North Carolina who meet need-based and/or merit-based criterion studying mathematics, science, and/or engineering.

In 2010, the Foundation fully funded an endowment with the North Carolina State University Engineering Foundation.  That same year, two deserving students first received scholarships from the fund.

In 2011, the Foundation expanded its efforts and partnered with the General H. Hugh Shelton Leadership Center, founded by its namesake, the 14th Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff.  The Shelton Leadership Center offers leadership training and enrichment programs to pre-collegiate youth and university students as well as scholarships for higher learning in an effort to “inspire, educate, and develop values-based leaders committed to personal integrity, professional ethics, and selfless service.” (excerpted from the Center’s materials).  The Foundation’s endowment enables young people to benefit from these experiences by offering financial assistance to those in need.

In the fall of 2012, the Foundation embarked upon a new project in association with Cumberland County Schools to enrich the learning of students in this area and assist them in reaching their full potential.  A lecture series spotlighting local leaders in the fields of engineering, medicine, mathematics, and the sciences began providing students in area high schools with an “up-close and personal” look at the endless possibilities for their futures.  The Foundation hopes to plant the seed of desire for those children to come back and work in the community that raised them by offering these eye-opening experiences and informing them about the opportunities for success after college locally.  In the same vein, it is our wish to engage local industry leaders in the school system so that they may support the educational programs of our county and reap the benefits of those students remaining or returning home after their collegiate experience.

In the spring of 2013, the Foundation took it one step further and awarded a grant to Cumberland County Schools to create a science lab at VanStory Hills Elementary School.  This hands-on learning opportunity will sparks the minds of young people who previously learned about our world from a book.  The Foundation offers grants to teachers, administrators, and schools within the Cumberland County School System.

In the fall of 2013, the Foundation officially announced its grant program and awarded three grants to area elementary and high schools in the spring of 2014 to math, science, and engineering projects.

  • Westarea Elementary       $4,000         “Engineering is Elementary”
  • Glendale Acres Elementary       $500  “Updating Mathematics and Science Book Collection”
  • Cape Fear High School    $500  “OCS Science Closet”

The grant program continues to grow with annual awards to deserving applicants.