Oh, those screens. Those mammoth screens that are such lifesavers at event. They’re also tricky dudes. But more about that later.
While the media blackout was in full force on Friday, November 15, at The Salvation Army’s “Doing the Most Good Luncheon” at the Anatole, the folks who work year-round for the good of fundraising were celebrating and honoring their heroes/heroines at the National Philanthropy Day Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency.
Sponsored by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater Dallas Chapter, this lunch runs like a watch wishes it did. It’s largely due to recipients acknowledging their honor via videotaped acceptance speeches courtesy of KERA; there are no long-winded talks. But it may also be the fact that these folks have attended so many fundraisers, they just know the pro’s and con’s of a successful luncheon event — keep it short and sweet.
Luncheon Chair Kimberly Humphries and AFPGDC’s President Sue Bailey stayed true to the POA and pulled it off.
But before the meal and presentations of awards, there was the VIP reception underwritten by past recipients Diane and Hal Brierley in a nearby foyer. The camaraderie of this group is infectious. They’re in a city that has become nationally renowned for philanthropy. Sorta like hummingbirds at the Arboretum.
Following lunch (southern Caesar salad with ancho chili Caesar dressing, roasted sirloin of beef paired with achiote spiced chicken breast, wild rice orzo pasta and vegetable confetti and artisan breads), the awards were presented to the following:
Outstanding Philanthropist (sponsored by Clarkson Davis — Lyda Hill (nominated by Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden)
- Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser (sponsored by Dini Partners) — Forrest Hoglund (nominated by Perot Museum of Nature and Science)
- Outstanding Foundation (sponsored by Children’s Medical Center) — The Andrea-Mennen Family Foundation
- Outstanding Corporation (sponsored by The Trinity Trust Foundation) — Alon USA Energy Inc. (nominated by Communities in Schools of the Dallas Region Inc.)
- Outstanding Fundraising Executive (sponsored by Nancy Ann Hunt) — April Box Chamberlain (nominated by Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Methodist Health System Foundation)
- Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy (sponsored by The Todd and Abby Williams Family Foundation) — Ariana Luterman (nominated by Brian Donovan)
- Special Recognition Award (sponsored by the Salesmanship Club of Dallas) — Kent Skipper (nominated by the Greater Dallas Chapter Association of Fundraising Professionals)
Each of the video acceptances were gracious. But the scene-stealer was once again the Outstanding Youth In Philanthropy, 13-year-old triathlete Ariana. Perhaps it is because the ballroom is filled with veteran fundraisers who are impressed and inspired that such a young person has renewed their hope that the upcoming generation is already preparing to carry on the torch for their efforts. In this case, Ariana articulated her mission to help homeless children through Team Ariana. Her organization unites the sport of triathlon and focuses the national media spotlight on the growing challenge of homeless children in America from a child’s perspective.” Initially she had hoped to raise $25,000, but ended up with a total of $50,000, “which she donated entirely to Vogel Alcove.”
Following Ariana’s acceptance, emcee Scott Murray asked that Ariana’s folks — Allana and Zach Luterman — stand up.
And speaking of Scott, 2014 National Philanthropy Day Luncheon Chair Christina Moore-Salinas announced that because of his contributions and efforts to philanthropy, a contribution was being made to the Scott Murray Foundation.
The only hiccup . . . and it was a minor one. . . was the spotlight on one wall was off-center a bit, causing part of the screen on the right side of the stage to wash out. The good news is that the screen on the other side of the stage was perfect, so folks just had to move their eyeballs to the left for a perfect picture.
Even if you’re not a professional fundraiser, you can and should attend this luncheon. Consider putting the 2014 event on your calendar.