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Oh, What a Night! Celebrating Local Nonprofits and Staff.

We are experiencing post-event euphoria here at United Way-Thomas Jefferson Area. Last night was our  fifth annual United Way Awards of Nonprofit Excellence, and the evening was everything we could have  hoped for. Our board chair, Margery Daniel, and board member, the incomparable Jay James of NewsRadio 1070WINA, collaborated to engage the former Leadership Award recipients who were in the audience to tell their stories about what it means to work in the nonprofit field, and what it meant to be recognized for their work.   2011 Awards photo collage
Many thanks to Gordon Walker of JABA, Pat Smith of OAR/Jefferson Area Community Corrections, Peter Thompson of the Senior Center, and Chuck McElroy of WorkSource for being such good sports. 

Then it was on to Steve Krohn of Virginia National Bank, underwriter of the Excellence in Nonprofit Board Governance Award, and Governor Gerald Baliles, chair of the review panel for the award. He spoke at length about each finalist board: The Center for Nonprofit Excellence, PACEM and the Senior Center; and then announced that the 2011 recipient was the Center for Nonprofit Excellence. Uwexcellence2011_tomdaly_183

Board chair Russell Willis Taylor graciously accepted the award on behalf of her board and the staff of CNE.

The United Way Award of Excellence in Nonprofit Staff Leadership was presented by Bob Foster, on behalf of Hantzmon Wiebel, and Renée Grisham, chair of the review panel. Renée gave the audience a wonderful overview of each finalist’s unique qualities and contributions to their organizations, clients and the community. We were inspired by the work and dedication of Claudette Greene, Shelter Director for PACEM; Ethan Tate, Director of Volunteer Programs at Building Goodness Foundation; and Debbie Taylor, Director of Operations for JAUNT. Renée noted how hard it was to choose just one recipient when all were so deserving, yet ultimately she revealed that the 2011 recipient of the United Way Award of Excellence in Nonprofit Staff Leadership was Claudette Greene of PACEM.  Claudette’s acceptance speech was heartfelt and uplifting. Uwexcellence2011_tomdaly_195

More can be read about each finalist in the program book.

Photos are credited to Tom Daly.

Many thanks to the wonderful staff of United Way-Thomas Jefferson Area for their many hours of preparation in ensuring a smoothly run event, and to the staff of the Boars Head Inn for their outstanding service.

If you know of an outstanding nonprofit board, or an outstanding nonprofit staff member, we hope you will consider nominating them next year. This event is a wonderful opportunity to shine the light on the people whose mission is to help others.


Submitted by Kim Connolly

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