Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater Toronto Chapter announces 2009 Philanthropy Awards

         Determination, commitment, insight hallmark characteristics
                    of 2009 Philanthropy Award recipients

    TORONTO, Aug. 7 /CNW/ - The Greater Toronto Chapter of the Association of
Fundraising Professionals (AFP) announced the winners of the 2009 Philanthropy
Awards today. Recipients for this year include Joseph and Sandra Rotman
(Outstanding Philanthropists), John Hunkin (Outstanding Volunteer), CIBC
(Outstanding Corporation), The Counselling Foundation of Canada (Outstanding
Foundation), Shawn St. Michael (Outstanding Fundraising Professional), Bilaal
Rajan (Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy), and The Redwood and Station Gallery
(co-recipients of the Small Organization for Excellence in Fundraising). (See
recipient descriptions below)
    The AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Awards are a celebration of
the outstanding contribution of time, leadership and financial support made by
organizations and individuals, who have set excellence benchmarks in
encouraging the spirit of giving.
    "In view of the current economic uncertainty, it is of utmost importance
that we recognize and honour those individuals and organizations, who
exemplify the true spirit of philanthropy by giving, as well as encouraging
others to give," said Karen Willson, CFRE, Chapter President. "By putting
their creative ingenuity, powers of persuasion, strategic skills and
generosity to work, this year's AFP award recipients have demonstrated an
outstanding commitment to our community and empowered others to meet
challenges and overcome obstacles."
    The AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Awards are a celebration of
the outstanding contribution of time, leadership and financial support made by
organizations and individuals, who have demonstrated excellence and best
practice in achieving high-quality fundraising through either their own
efforts or their vision and strategy. Recipients are chosen by the AFP Award
Selection committee and include individuals, foundations and corporate
philanthropists, civic and service philanthropic organizations, professional
fundraising executives, and non-profits.
    "We received a very healthy submission of nominations this year, all of
which deserve appreciation for the fine example they set," said Mark
Climie-Elliott, CFRE, Philanthropy Awards Selection Chair. "Philanthropy plays
a key role in connecting our community and making it a vibrant and thriving
place to live. As a leader in the promotion of philanthropy, AFP is delighted
to recognize the outstanding achievements of this years' recipients, all of
whom have demonstrated a steadfast commitment to ethical fundraising and
transformational leadership."
    The 2009 AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Awards recipients will
be honoured at a special luncheon on Wednesday, December 2 at the Metro
Toronto Convention Centre as a part of Congress 2009.

    About the AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Awards

    The AFP Greater Toronto Chapter has been honouring leadership in
philanthropy through its annual awards program since 1995. This year the
Awards will be presented at the annual AFP Greater Toronto Chapter's
Philanthropy Awards Luncheon to be held at the Metro Toronto Convention
Centre, North Building on Wednesday, December 2, 2009. For more information
please contact Cynthia Quigley AFP Greater Toronto Chapter at 416-941-9212 or or visit

    About AFP

    Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Greater Toronto Chapter is
a recognized leader in promoting philanthropy and providing education,
training and best practices for those in the fundraising profession. With more
than 1,200 members, the Greater Toronto Chapter is the largest of the 200 AFP
chapters throughout the world.

    Recipients of the 2009 AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Awards

    Outstanding Philanthropists - Joseph and Sandra Rotman

    Joseph and Sandra Rotman are the founding philanthropists of the Rotman
School at the University of Toronto. As a result of the Rotmans' leadership
and financial contributions of $36 million since 1993, the Faculty of
Management at the University of Toronto has been transformed into an
internationally recognized institution of business education. The Rotmans'
distinguished philanthropic record as supporters of numerous higher education,
health and arts organisations demonstrates their deep commitment to community
involvement and volunteerism. As Canada's leading philanthropists, the Rotmans
provide ongoing leadership and financial support to many institutions and
organisations of social and cultural importance.

    Outstanding Volunteer - John Hunkin

    In his years of involvement with St. Michael's Hospital Foundation,
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) and York University, John
Hunkin's record of volunteerism combines personal generosity with a
magnificent ability to inspire and motivate others to give. Mr. Hunkin is
passionate about the importance of philanthropy, and the role of corporate and
community leaders in teaching young Canadians to give back through gifts of
time and resources. Engaging and committed to building an organizational
culture that attracts and supports staff, volunteers and donors, John Hunkin
has built a legacy of true philanthropic leadership, powered by both passion
and business sense.

    Outstanding Corporation - CIBC

    The scope of CIBC's community investment program truly spans the country
from coast to coast to coast, including support for more than 2,500
organizations. In 2008, CIBC committed more than $27 million in Canadian
charitable and non-profit initiatives. With a strategic focus on youth,
education and health, CIBC demonstrates its commitment to philanthropy and its
leadership as an outstanding organization dedicated to making a difference for
all Canadians. CIBC's exceptional commitment to providing ongoing support to
causes that matter to its clients, employees and communities has enabled it to
contribute to the success of many charitable organizations.

    Outstanding Foundation - The Counselling Foundation of Canada

    The CFC is a private family-based charitable foundation, which supports
the creation and delivery of career counselling and personal development
programs for the benefit of people, practitioners and communities. The
Foundation has granted close to $60 million to a variety of social service
agencies, schools, universities and other not-for-profit organizations, such
as Pathways to Education, YMCA of Greater Toronto, the Canadian Education and
Research Institute for Counselling, and Eva's Initiatives for Homeless Youth
Toronto. The Foundation has become a recognized leader in developing
innovative pilot projects and building partnerships designed to encourage
others to take leadership in their communities.

    Outstanding Fundraising Professional - Shawn St. Michael

    Shawn St. Michael is the Executive Director, Marketing and Development at
the Art Gallery of Ontario, where she has been a lead fundraiser for 15 years.
Under her leadership in 2008, the Transformation AGO campaign achieved
approximately $306 million and is heralded as the most successful cultural
campaign in Canadian history. A consummate and highly regarded professional,
Ms. St. Michael has built a stellar reputation with staff, volunteers, and
donors at the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Stratford Festival, where she was
a fundraiser for 7 years. Her outstanding fundraising achievements are built
on a disciplined approach to development, openness to collaboration and
remarkable creativity.

    Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy - Bilaal Rajan

    Bilaal became involved in philanthropy when he was only 4 years old.
Determined to do something to help the 2001 earthquake victims in India, he
managed to raise $350 by going door-to-door selling oranges. At the age of 7,
Bilaal founded, an organisation created to raise millions
of dollars to help kids in need all over the world. In 2005 UNICEF named
Bilaal Canada children's ambassador. In 2008, he wrote and published a book
called Making Change: Tips from an Underage Overachiever, which focuses on
teaching young people how to make a positive difference in the world. As
Bilaal likes to say: "Together, we CAN make a difference".

    Small Organization for Excellence in Fundraising Co-Recipient - Station

    The Station Gallery is a cultural leader and has been an integral player
in the art sector in the Durham Region since the late 1970s. In the past three
years, the Station Gallery has transformed its organisational and fundraising
structure, so as to successfully manage the fine balance of art and business.
The gallery was able to triple its membership, develop a strong volunteer
program, double its event revenue, generate $50,000 in the first year of its
new corporate strategy, and extend its reach of influence and leadership
beyond the gallery walls by establishing partnerships with over 20 community

    Small Organization for Excellence in Fundraising Co-Recipient - The

    Since 1993, the Redwood has provided crucial emotional, social and
practical support to help thousands of families get their lives back on track
after escaping violence. It is one of the only organizations in the Violence
Against Women sector in the GTA to successfully use volunteer cabinet to raise
major gifts on an on-going basis to support the delivery of core services.
Overcoming numerous challenges associated with its small size and little name
recognition, the Redwood has achieved a steady increase in annual fundraising
revenue of at least 20% in the past four years and has successfully developed
a strong, balanced and diversified fundraising program.

For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Cynthia Quigley at (416)
941-9212 or

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