Press Release
July 10, 2020

Media Contact
Macy Whitener


LANCASTER, S.C. – The J. Marion Sims Foundation announced today it is changing its name to the Arras Foundation following a two-year planning process. The word “arras” means a diverse tapestry. The new name reflects the Foundation’s 25-year history of weaving together community assets to build healthier communities in Lancaster County, Great Falls, and Fort Lawn, S.C.

After months of input from partners, residents, and community leaders, the trustees and Foundation staff finalized the organization’s new name in January 2019.

“We are thrilled to announce our new name, the Arras Foundation, which beautifully embodies our mission and vision. We envision the communities we serve as places where everyone joins together to build on community assets for current and future generations, and where everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential. That’s our North Star,” said Susan DeVenny, President & CEO of the Arras Foundation. “Our new name reflects our deeply held commitment to cultivating a healthier community and ensuring voices are heard, now more than ever.”

The Arras Foundation will continue the long-standing work of promoting the health and well-being of residents in the communities served by the organization.

“Given the many challenges we are facing in our communities today, we are eager to share this good news. While our name has changed, our commitment to Lancaster County, Great Falls and Fort Lawn is steadfast,” said Board of Trustees Chair Jodie Plyler. “At the Arras Foundation, we believe that the individuals we serve should always be the focus of our work, and we recognize that we can’t make our vision a reality when our name is a barrier to some of the people we serve. Our new name represents our desire to join with others, always, to build a healthy community.”

“The new name, the Arras Foundation, reflects the evolution of the organization,” said Madeleine McGee, President & CEO, Together SC. “Arras -defined as a tapestry- showcases the work the Foundation does with partners in the community, from grantmaking to community engagement and more. As a longstanding partner, I could not be more proud of the board’s bold decision.”

Arras Foundation

Dedicated to the health and wellness of all residents of Lancaster County, Fort Lawn, and Great Falls, SC for 25 years, the Foundation joins with partners to work together so that all people can thrive.