Strongest Start for the Children

March 17, 2023

Article from our 2023 Spring Fulcrum News.

Fulcrum honored Dick Abrams with the prestigious Archbishop’s Award at the Celebration of Light 2023 for his long-time advocacy and support of Catholic education in Western Washington.

“If you’ve studied any theology, you know that humility and charity are the parents of all of the other virtues,” said Archbishop Paul D. Etienne as he presented the award. “And if you know Dick, you know he is a humble and incredibly charitable man, and because of that, we’ve come to know him as a very virtuous man as well.”

Dick and his late wife, Sharon Abrams, both grew up attending local Catholic schools, including St. Teresa School (now St. Therese Catholic Academy) and Seattle Preparatory School for Dick and the Forest Ridge Convent (now Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart) for Sharon. They also raised their children in local Catholic schools.  

Dick and Sharon were called to give back to Catholic causes, including Catholic education. As long-time supporters of the Fulcrum Foundation, the Abrams championed the creation of the St. Cecilia Catholic School Patron’s Endowment (Bainbridge Island) at Fulcrum. 

Dick and Sharon also recognized the value of a strong start for children who have access to quality early childhood education. Even after Sharon passed away, Dick continued leading the charge in the creation of the Early Childhood Education Endowment at Fulcrum, a program that benefits 1,700 young students currently attending the 56 early learning programs in local Catholic schools. Early learning is foundational to the health of local Catholic schools with its positive impact on enrollment in grades K-8 and beyond. 

 “[I] say a prayer to the Holy Spirit: kindle in us the fire of Christ’s love. It is a fountain of powerful inspiration,” said Dick Abrams. “Why the focus on early childhood education? Most simply because 90 percent of human brain growth occurs by the age of five and, in today’s society, so many children need a healthy environment for brain formation [and] development of basic mental, emotional, spiritual, and social circuitry.”

The Fulcrum Foundation will be forever grateful to Dick Abrams for being a shining example of Holy Spirit-inspired generosity and a witness to how a strong start in early learning can give children the best.

View our Celebration of Light video,“Starting Strong” 

Learn more about Early Childhood Education and other Fulcrum Programs here. 

Support Dick Abrams and other Fulcrum supporters by becoming part of Fulcrum