Application period opens for Corley grants

Mar. 19—From staff reports

Applications are now being taken for grants that will be awarded by the W.R. Corley Memorial Trust.

They are being accepted starting Wednesday, March 20, by Southwest Missouri Bank, trustee of the W.R. Corley Memorial Trust.

Grants are available to qualified nonprofit organizations. Eligible entities include those that provide services to the homeless and low-income populations in Jasper and Newton counties.

"Bob Corley would be very pleased to see that his legacy is having an impact on the communities he loved," said Chuck Brown, senior vice president and trust officer at Southwest Missouri Bank. "He was very generous to the community during his lifetime, and that generosity will continue in the future. A multitude of organizations were able to benefit last year, and we look forward to continuing Bob's philanthropy in the coming year," Brown said in a statement.

The trust has distributed approximately $750,000 since Corley's death in 2019.

Corley was a retired Joplin businessman and area philanthropist who died at the age of 98. He was a World War II veteran who earned a degree in business administration in southern California and came to Joplin in 1951. He owned a men's clothing business, the Duds Shop, and later owned and operated The Attic and Accents, decor and gift shops on South Main Street in Joplin.

Grant applications can be emailed to or by calling 417-623-3424. Applications are due by May 6. Grants will be reviewed by a distribution committee and awarded in mid-June.

"We have many non-profits in Jasper and Newton Counties that help the homeless and disadvantaged in our area," said Brown. "Mr. Corley's dream was that his generosity would make a difference right here."