Friday, Jul 29, 2016
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Barbara Hendel


Local philanthropists are honored

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    Representing corporate honoree ProMedica Flower Hospital are, from left: Tolani Kashimawo, Maurine Wets, Mary Beth Knake, and Rick Pietraniec.

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Representing corporate honoree ProMedica Flower Hospital are, from left: Tolani Kashimawo, Maurine Wets, Mary Beth Knake, and Rick Pietraniec.

The Blade/Jetta Fraser
Enlarge | Buy This Image

Giving back to the community is always in season, no matter what time of year.

National Philanthropy Day was celebrated with a luncheon presented by the local chapter of Association of Fundraising Professionals Nov. 15 at The Pinnacle in Maumee. The local chapter, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary, highlighted several generous supporters of the community. Chapter president Mary Galvin of University of Toledo, welcomed everyone.

Top honorees were:

Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy, ages 5-17, Olivia Rufner. She sold donated items at the Perrysburg Flea Market and raised $1,000 for the Cancer Biology and Biochemistry Fund at University of Toledo for cancer research.

PHOTO GALLERY: Local philanthropists honored 

Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy, ages 18-23, Skyler Rogers. He is co-founder of, which donates a portion of the t-shirt sales to helping others, including families of the victims and survivors of the wrong way crash that killed and injured Bowling Green State University students in April. He is one of the youngest members of the Presidents Club, major donors who give $15,000 or more to BGSU during their lifetimes. He committed a $100,000 life insurance policy to the College of Business Administration.

Outstanding Media Outlet, Mix 98.1. Announcer Rick Small helped raise $20,000 in cash and in-kind gifts for Kaitlyn's Cottage, a new respite center for young adults with special needs in Defiance.

Outstanding Foundation, Eugene and Eleanor Harms Foundation, for its support of the Northwest Ohio Scholarship Fund and St. Ursula Academy.

Outstanding Corporate Philanthropist, ProMedica Flower Hospital for the foundation's donation of $1 million to Lourdes University's Master of Science in Nursing, Nurse Anesthesia Program.

Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser, George and Leslie Chapman, as the United Way's Tocqueville Society chairmen for four years, gaining 15 new couples this year. Each member gives $10,000 or more annually.

Outstanding Philanthropist, Dan and Sharon Farrell, for their support of ProMedica Defiance Regional Hospital, including a $1 million challenge grant for a $2.8 million campaign for Kaitlin's Cottage.


From left, Mary Chris Skeldon, Kelly Keefer, and Deborah Barnett at the Komen Race for the Cure thank-you reception at Hollywood Casino.


Thanks go to the 20 sponsors, 428 attendees, and event chairmen Heather Slough and Allie Berns of the University of Toledo and their committee including chapter president-elect Kathryn Fell of Toledo-Lucas County Public Library. While the event was a thank you to the community philanthropists, an estimated $10,000 was raised and will support monthly membership programs and speakers..

A thank you reception for the top 50 fund-raisers of the 2012 Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure was Nov. 13 at Hollywood Casino. Board president Mary Chris Skeldon, a breast cancer survivor, welcomed everyone and thanked race chairman Kelly Keefer. The race, which raised $1 million, drew more than 17,000 participants.

Grant fund requests for breast health programs in Northwest Ohio totaling $1.6 million have been received and grant announcements will be made in April, said Mary Westphal, executive director. "Your support makes funding these grants possible."

Among the attendees were board members Lori Decker, Mark Evans, Dr. Robin Shermis, Deborah Barnett, Dr. Shaneli Fernando, and Christy Contardi-Stone and sponsors Allen Seifert and wife Joy Seifert, Marcia Stager, Brian Minges, and Dr. Deb Skrzynecki and Dr. Mickey Frame.

Diabetes Youth Services Sweet Success Gala presented by Waterford Bank Nov. 16 at the Hilton Garden Inn raised about $75,000. The organization for educational programs and services for more than 3,000 children in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan who have Type 1 diabetes, teaches children how to manage their disease and live, healthy, confident and independent lives.

Mike Miller, CEO and president of Waterford Bank, was recognized as honorary chairman. Former Diabetes Youth Services camper and current counselor Wes Herr shared his story and explained why he still comes back to camp each year to help other children.

Among the 225 attendees were Todd and Linda Hoyt, Marc and Terry Stockwell, Craig and Sherry Jones, Scott and Natalie Aubry, Jim and Candy Gildea, and Brian and Deborah Fawcett.

Kids Unlimited inaugural State of the Child Event Nov. 14 at The Pinnacle netted $22,000, double the goal. The evenings program included keynote speaker Dr. Lloyd A. Jacobs, president of the University of Toledo  who addressed the state of education in northwest Ohio.

Event host Mike Gibbons, president and chief executive officer of Mainstreet Ventures talked about Kids Unlimited and its impact on improving the lives of Toledo‐area children. 

How to Look Fabulous: an interactive fashion show and designer purse auction presented by the Toledo Symphony League was Nov. 13 at Nazareth Hall in Grand Rapids. Event co-chairmen Joni Fought and Pam Pilz report a net of $5,500.

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