On April 24, the CFO celebrated an outstanding year among its 44 regional affiliate foundations with the annual Affiliate Conference. Designed to energize and educate the CFO’s volunteer leaders across the Ozarks, the conference was also a chance to acknowledge the achievements and leadership of these community-minded individuals.
The morning featured a panel of affiliate leaders participating in a discussion about “Strengthening the Rural Family.” Nixa’s Sharon Whitehill Gray, Aurora’s Scott Pettit, Joplin/Southwest Missouri’s Lisa Knutzen, and Republic’s Josh Mathews shared their experiences on the local level, as well as their thoughts on what constituted quality engagement, both among their board and the community at large.
“Philanthropy is not something you are born with; philanthropy is something you have to learn,” Whitehill Gray said. It’s giving from the heart. Sometimes, it’s your money. Sometimes, it’s your time. Sometimes, it’s your talents.”
The CFO also announced that, in 2015, an award will be given to one exemplary affiliate board member. The award will be named for Fred Lemons, the late, longtime president of the Lockwood Community Foundation. His wife (and current president of the Lockwood foundation) Larue attended the conference and was honored for her (and Fred’s) years of service.
The CFO’s affiliate department also honored nine outstanding regional board members. Those honored (pictured above, from left) are: Josh Mathews, Republic Community Foundation; Kathy Lasley, Crawford County Foundation, Inc.; Kay Forest, El Dorado Springs Community Foundation; Marilyn Ellis, Stockton Community Foundation; Janis Creek, Finley River Community Foundation; Brenda Ledgerwood, Alton Community Foundation; Randy Shipman, Truman Lake Community Foundation; Dr. Bernie Sirois, Dent County Community Foundation.
Finally, the most anticipated announcement of the day came when the CFO announced the winners of the first annual Affiliate of the Year awards, given to an outstanding affiliate in each of the CFO’s four service regions. The 2013-14 winners were:
Region 2: Finley River Community Foundation
Region 3: Marshfield Area Community Foundation
Region 4: Ozark Foothills Regional Community Foundation