The Mary Louise Bates Scholarship Program provides financial help to children who wish to attend the Maplewood Family YMCA, allowing more of them to experience the many benefits associated with the YMCA.
Mary Louise Bates Scholarship Program was established to honor the memory of its namesake, a woman born 1929 to a family of eight children. Growing up during the Depression era, Mary was raised in poverty and never graduated from high school. During her teenage years in the middle of World War II, she worked in a silk mill, assisting with the creation of parachutes for paratroopers. She eventually moved to Rochester where she got married, had a child named Robert V. Glaser, divorced, and began working two jobs to support her son as a single mother.
Despite her circumstances, Mary instilled values in Robert, including the importance of integrity, hard work, doing the right thing, and helping those less fortunate. She also encouraged him to stay active, enrolling him in the Maplewood Family YMCA where he participated in numerous activities. Robert also excelled in school where he graduated and would go on to expand his education, eventually working in finance. His experience would eventually lad Robert to launch his own successful investment firm, the success of which he attributes in part to his mother’s influence and his time at the YMCA.
Mary Louise Bates passed away in 1999 from cancer. To memorialize her and her positive impact on him, Robert established the Mary Louise Bates Scholarship Program in 2001 so other children could enjoy the many benefits he once did during his time at the YMCA.