The Rives C. Minor and Asalie M. Preston Educational Fund, a Charlottesville-based charitable trust, was endowed by Asalie M. Preston upon her death in 1982 and has been awarding scholarships and supporting educational initiatives in the Charlottesville and Albemarle area since 1983. Asalie Preston envisioned her estate dedicated to the betterment of the community to which she and her father, Rives C. Minor, both lifelong educators, had devoted so much of their effort for so many years.

History of the Fund

Rives Minor was born in Albemarle County on January 19, 1856. He entered the county’s public school in 1868, and by age seventeen had begun what was to be a lifetime of teaching. After graduating from Storers College in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, he taught in the public schools of Bath County for nine years before a twenty-one year tenure as an educator in Albemarle County public schools. Rives Minor died on March 8, 1926.

Asalie Preston was born December 7, 1903. She taught in Albemarle County public schools from 1922 until 1933, when she entered St. Paul’s College in Lawrenceville, Virginia. She resumed teaching in Albemarle County public schools in 1936, retiring in 1969. She lived for many years in the “Rock House,” a site prominent in local African American history, now a Virginia Landmark and National Historic Place, and home to Legal Aid offices that provide legal services to low-income members of the community. Asalie Preston died on July 29, 1982.

Asalie Preston thought it would be fitting for her legacy to be a charitable fund to support the higher education of students and graduates of the public schools of Charlottesville and Albemarle County. It is a credit to her vision that her sisters, Glenna E. Minor and Bernice M. Hargis, followed her extremely generous example by actively supporting the Fund during their lifetimes, and by contributing substantially to its endowment upon their deaths.

Although Asalie Preston did not live to see the fruition of her gift to the community, the spirit of her and her father’s commitment to youth lives on in the work of the Fund. The Minor Preston Educational Fund is a testament to the commitment to community, devotion to teaching, and untiring labors of a singular
African American family.

In furtherance of its educational objectives, the Fund undertook in 1994 to support the Imani Project, an early intervention program at Charlottesville’s Venable Elementary School, and later the Walker Learning Lab. The Fund provided nearly $50,000 towards administrative costs of these projects, with the total costs being assumed over time by Charlottesville Schools. Most important, the Fund awarded $45,000 in scholarships to graduates of the Imani Project. Since 2007, the Fund has also supported the educational initiatives of Legal Aid’s JustChildren program.

Looking ahead to the next quarter-century, the Minor-Preston Educational Fund hopes to expand its scholarship program while seeking out other worthy educational initiatives in the Charlottesville and Albemarle community.

Objectives of the Fund

The Minor Preston Fund is committed to:

  • The pursuit of educational, scientific, and charitable aims;
  • The support and recognition of worthy public school students in the Charlottesville-Albemarle community
  • The awarding of scholarships to graduating seniors of the public high schools of Charlottesville and Albemarle County for public or private postsecondary education

Board of Directors

Margaret Littlepage, President
Edie Wheeler, Secretary
Frederick Bryant
Keith Carter
John Gaines
Renata Germino

Brian Menard, Executive Director

Past Recipients

Further information on past recipients is being compiled and will be available soon. For more information, please contact the Fund directly.