Milford couple pursues philanthropy via Pike Community Foundation

Milford. Chuck and Celeste O’Neil created a fund to address local hunger, autism, domestic violence and historic preservation.

| 16 Oct 2022 | 11:21

MILFORD, PA -- What happens when a local couple has lived in Milford for 40 years, been married for 50 years and asks, “How can we now make good of all this community has given us?”

Chuck and Celeste O’Neil, of Milford, recently opened a fund with Greater Pike Community Foundation that will assist with community autism support services and historic preservation, reducing food insecurity and addressing domestic violence, . Greater Pike helps people who want to support their communities with a strategic and managed approach.

The O’Neils wanted a way to return to the community all they feel they have gained by participating in many community activities.

“We’re grateful to have lived in Milford for the past 40 years, where we raised our four children, because of the sense of community we have always felt — it’s energy and goodwill,” they said. “We want to donate to causes that we feel passionately about in a way that’s targeted, substantial and sustainable over time.”

Celeste O’Neil remains active as a talent recruiter for Bon Secours, combining her years of experience with an investment company and volunteer board activities with the Black Bear Film Festival, United Way, and Pike County Chamber of Commerce to match RNs with individuals needing home health care. She also founded a book club, practices yoga and spends time with family.

Chuck O’Neil, retired after 42 years from his architectural woodworking business, has been looking for ways to combine his experience and love of historic preservation and poetry to contribute to the community. A former member of the Architectural Review Board and past president of the Historic Preservation Trust of Pike County, he recently was named Milford’s first Poet Laureate. He will be featured in a public reading on Oct. 21 at the Artery in Milford.

His most recent publication, “Holding Things Together,” includes the poem “Looking Out,” which is dedicated to the memories of Milford residents Richard L. Snyder and Tom Hoff, both influential community activists who founded such initiatives as Greater Pike Community Foundation and Milford Enhancement Committee. Proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to Greater Pike.

The focus of their targeted philanthropy through their activities, and now their new Greater Pike fund, will support needs and interests that are personal for them and that they have, at one time over the past four decades, played some role in supporting.

“We respect Greater Pike’s mission, and the O’Neil Family Fund is our way of participating in the good local work that it does and will continue to do for years to come,” they said.

Online donations to the O’Neil Fund can be made at Scroll down to the fund name for the link.
Greater Pike helps individuals, families, and local businesses to provide a permanent and personal way to give back to the community. For more information contact Jenni Hamill, Executive Director, at (570) 832-4686,, or visit and