Geographic Area

The 37,000 people who live in Crook, Wheeler, Grant and Harney counties are the Foundation’s focus, but we share common interests with the other 15 counties east of the Cascades.

Eleven of these counties are designated “frontier” with fewer than six people per square mile. Frontier counties have some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, as well as some of the highest rates of unemployment in the country. Besides the lack of jobs, we also lack access to higher education and specialized healthcare. Public transportation for low-income, seniors and disabled people does not exist. The nearest supermarket for some people is three hours away. A majority of the land is publicly owned and does not contribute to the tax base to provide basic services.

John Shelk presenting a check to Tracie Unterwegner and members of the Grant County Library Foundation to purchase land for new library.

John Shelk presenting a check to Tracie Unterwegner and members of the Grant County Library Foundation to purchase land for new library.

Wheeler County Painted Hills

Wheeler County Painted Hills

Coming down the grade into Prineville

Coming down the grade into Prineville

Welcome to John Day

Welcome to John Day