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$12,550,813

Paid Year to Date in Grants & Scholarships
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The Philanthropic Services Officer's primary responsibility is increasing and enhancing the Foundation’s development and donor services. Full-time position + excellent benefits. Email resume and cover letter to [email protected] (please include Philanthropic Services Officer in the subject line). This position will remain open until it is filled. Full job description below.


JOB TITLE:                  Philanthropic Services Officer

DEPARTMENT:           Philanthropic Services

SUPERVISOR:             Vice President Philanthropic Services & Advancement

Greater Toledo Community Foundation is a community asset. The Foundation is a collection of funds established by donors interested in philanthropy and supporting the greater Toledo area. Currently, the assets of the Foundation in excess of $435 million are made up of more than 900 funds. The Foundation is the largest grantmaker in the Toledo area, granting more than $20 million annually.

General Job Description

The Philanthropic Services team of Greater Toledo Community Foundation actively works with more than 1,000 charitable individuals, families and businesses to express their generosity. The Philanthropic Services Officer is charged with the overall growth and sustainability of the Foundation: to secure funds for the organization by fulfilling the interests and passions of prospective donors and advising current fundholders.  Additionally, the position builds relationships with estate planning and corporate attorneys, accountants, financial planners, wealth managers and trust officers. This position will be responsible for assisting leadership related to development and donor services.

The Philanthropic Services Officer is responsible for delivering excellent fundholder experiences in grantmaking and philanthropic advising to 300 funds in their portfolio. The position is also charged with maintaining relationships with affiliate community foundations, including employees, board members, fundholders and prospects. Success is defined by new fund growth, current fundholder satisfaction, legacy conversions, positive attitude and teamwork. 

Major Duties and Responsibilities

Active Development

  • Assist the Philanthropic Services Department in raising $30 million per year. 
  • Identify, cultivate, solicit and secure commitments from donors, including individuals, families, businesses and private foundations.
  • Develop and build pipeline of prospective donors for planned and legacy gifts.
  • Work with donor prospects to draft fund agreements and gift documentation. 
  • Develop and maintain portfolios from identification of prospects to solicitation of gifts.
  • Establish a program of personal visits with past, present and future (legacy) donors.

Relationship Management and Advising

  • Serve as relationship manager for high-capacity donors to develop and strengthen grantmaking ideas.
  • Build and maintain relationships with financial advisors, accountants, lawyers and referral sources.
  • Ensure active stewardship of fundholders, including legacy donors, current and prospective fundholders.
  • Collaborate with the Program team and ensure donor familiarity and intent.
  • Manage and maintain records in Community Suite, the Foundation’s CRM.

Additional

  • Maintain knowledge of state/federal taxes, estate giving methods and legal aspects of charitable giving.
  • Participate in Philanthropic Services’ and community-related events.
  • Partner with Financial team; ensure accuracy and timeliness of reports and spreadsheets.
  • Collaborate with Program team on grantmaking and fulfilling donor intent. 

Minor Duties and Responsibilities

  • Assist in the management of department’s services provided to the affiliated community foundations.
  • Support the production of software reports pertaining to gifts and donors as directed.
  • Work cooperatively with Foundation staff in cooperative and participatory manner to ensure a smooth and timely flow of support services.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications for the Job

Education:

Bachelor’s degree

Experience:

  • Minimum 3-5 years professional fundraising, nonprofit or business sales experience, including cultivating, soliciting and closing prospective donors/clients with record of major gift and planned giving experience.     
  • Comprehensive knowledge of, or willingness to learn, state/federal taxes and giving methods. 
  • Knowledge of community foundations preferred, but not required.
  • Understanding of and commitment to the Foundation’s goals and mission.

Other:

  Outstanding written and verbal skills.

  Must be able to develop interpersonal relationships with multiple constituents.

  Ability to plan, organize and remain accountable.

  Experience in making group presentations and committee management.

  Ability to function in a confidential manner.

Key Competencies

  Impeccable ethics, initiative, enthusiasm and ability to establish credibility.

  Able to organize own work in the Philanthropic Services Department to meet deadlines.

  Able to think and act independently and with good judgement.

  Advanced word processing functions skills.

Physical Requirements

While this is mainly an office position, the ability to lift small boxes (letter stock, postcard stock, paper) is required occasionally.

Additionally, this position will require travel outside of the office to meet with prospective donors, financial planners and current donors.

To apply for this position, email your resume and cover letter to [email protected]. Please include Philanthropic Services Officer in the subject line. The position will remain open until it is filled.

Greater Toledo Community Foundation is hiring an Accounting Assistant. This position is part of the Finance team and reports to the Controller. The position profile follows. To apply, email a cover letter and your resume to [email protected] The position will remain open until it is filled.


JOB TITLE: Accounting Assistant

DEPARTMENT: Finance

SUPERVISOR: Controller

Toledo Community Foundation, Inc. is a community asset. The Foundation is a collection of funds established by donors interested in philanthropy and supporting the Toledo area. Currently, the assets of the Foundation are approximately $435 million, made up of more than 900 funds. The Foundation is the largest grantmaker in the Toledo area, granting an average of $18 million a year.

GENERAL JOB DESCRIPTION
This position will be responsible for the day-to-day activities related to gift entry as well as ordering the funds needed to pay grants. This position is a very detail-oriented job where accuracy, to the penny, is important.

MAJOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Preparation of all bank and brokerage firm deposit slips
Data entry for gifts, including preparing acknowledgement letters
Data entry for accounts payable and some month-end journal entries
Preparation of money orders for grant payments and record transfers (between pools)
Ensure that bills are paid timely
Prepare all approved checks, download grant letters and prepare check registers
Prepare 1099s annually
Scan supporting documents
Manage company credit cards
Provide secretarial support as needed for the Finance Department

MINOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Provide back-up for phones in the absence of the Administrative Assistant or the Grantmaking Associate
Other duties as assigned

QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE JOB
Education:
Associates degree

Experience:
2 years nonprofit and/or grantmaking experience

Other:
Ability to review and proofread documents for accuracy, spelling, punctuation and grammar
Ability to manage multiple tasks in an environment with short deadlines
Meet monthly financial deadlines

KEY COMPETENCIES
Experience with Microsoft Office Suite
Self-starter, detail oriented, accurate and meticulous with work product
Ability to work independently and in a team environment

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS
While this is mainly an office position, the ability to lift small boxes (letter stock, postcard stock, paper) is required occasionally.

To apply, email a cover letter and your resume to [email protected]
The position will remain open until it is filled.

Controller

Greater Toledo Community Foundation

The Foundation is looking to fill the position of Controller. This position reports to the Chief Financial Officer and is a supervisory position that will oversee the Finance team. The position profile follows. To apply, email a cover letter and your resume to [email protected] The position will remain open until it is filled.


JOB TITLE:                         Controller

DEPARTMENT:                 Finance

SUPERVISOR:                   Chief Financial Officer

The Greater Toledo Community Foundation, Inc. is a community asset. The Foundation is a collection of funds established by donors interested in philanthropy and supporting the Toledo area. Currently, the assets of the Foundation are approximately $435 million, made up of over 900 funds. The Foundation is the largest grantmaker in the Toledo area, granting an average of $18 million a year.

General Job Description

This position will be the leader of the Foundation's new, integrated software package. Responsibilities will include managing the Finance team; maintaining/updating procedures for the new software; preparing quarterly financial statements; accurate preparation of quarterly donor reports; and managing the annual audit.

Major Duties and Job Responsibilities

Lead software team/Train super-users

Prepare quarterly financial statements

Create financial statement and supporting schedule reports

Manage in-house technology needs, working with IT consultant Schedule and oversee the external audit and related activities

Ensure that periodic bank reconciliations are completed on a timely basis

Maintain a system of controls over accounting transactions

Monitor actual operating revenues/expenses and inform President or CFO of any significant variances

Supervise the Finance Team (Fund Accounting Manager, Grants Manager and Accounting Assistant)

Communicate with banks, brokerage firms or other financial institutions to facilitate the timely sale and reinvestment of non-cash assets donated to the Foundation or its related entities

Prepare annual operating budget schedules for the CFO’s review

Minor Duties and Job Responsibilities

Maintain the chart of accounts

Update/Maintain Finance Department Procedures Manual

Review HR related vendors and recommend options

Other duties as assigned

Qualifications for the Job

Education:

4-year degree, preferably with a concentration in Accounting, Finance or MIS

Preference will be given to candidates with the Certified Public Accountant designation

Experience:

3 to 5 years in a supervisory role

Other:

Ability to manage many job tasks while supervising others

Ability to work closely with senior management

Self-motivated

Meet monthly financial deadlines

Key Competencies

Experience with Microsoft Office Suite

Strong interpersonal, communication and presentation skills

Ability to identify best practices in all areas of Finance

Strong analytical and organizational skills

Physical Requirements

While this is mainly an office position, the ability to lift small boxes (letter stock, postcard stock, paper) is required occasionally.

There is generally no travel involved, unless attending Foundation or professional development events.

2021 Results

TOLEDO, OHIO, January 21, 2022 – #GivingTuesday™ is a global day of giving, and happens on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving each year. This day of giving is fueled by the power of social media and collaboration.

Greater Toledo Community Foundation, in partnership with The Blade and The Center for Nonprofit Resources, introduced #GivingTuesdayNWO in 2013 to encourage nonprofits to begin online giving programs and encourage donors to make local giving a priority. Year over year, this day of giving has seen remarkable efforts to involve the business community and build capacity of local nonprofits, especially small grassroots nonprofits.

For the ninth year, our local nonprofit organizations have benefitted  by this giving day. Results obtained through an online survey (49 organizations self-reported) prove that local nonprofits raised $269,095 on November 30, 2021. In addition, Greater Toledo Community Foundation (GTCF) provided $10,000 to fund two unrestricted grants for local nonprofit organizations participating in GivingTuesdayNWO. The combined efforts of the Foundation and our local nonprofits resulted in more than $279,000 being distributed to worthy causes in Toledo and northwest Ohio.

According to #GivingTuesday™ movement headquarters (givingtuesday.org), a more complete reporting, estimated results in our area for 2021 are:

  • Lucas County – 6,503 contributions totaling $807,013
  • Toledo Metro Area – 9,835 contributions totaling $1,185,504
  • Ohio – 219,582 contributions totaling $30,325,462

Two nonprofit agencies were randomly drawn from the list of those nonprofit organizations that participated in #GivingTuesdayNWO 2021 and reported their results to GTCF.  One lucky winner was chosen to receive an award of $5,000 from each of two categories: Small Organization and Large Organization.

Those awards go to:

  • Small Organization:  Habitat for Humanity of Wood County
  • Large Organization:  Toledo Museum of Art


GivingTuesday Award Winners From left Mark Ohashi, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Wood County; Keith Burwell, president of Greater Toledo Community Foundation; Kurt Franck, president/general manager & executive editor of The Blade; Jenny Wensink, director of development at the Toledo Museum of Art, and Adam Levine, director of the Toledo Museum of Art, Friday, January 21, 2022, in Toledo. THE BLADE/JEREMY WADSWORTH

#GivingTuesday™ will take place this year on November 29, 2022.

TOLEDO, OHIO, January 13, 2022 – The Center for Nonprofit Resources (The Center), a program of Greater Toledo Community Foundation, graduated the ninth cohort of its Minority Executive Leadership Program this week. Through a series of high-quality professional development workshops facilitated by both national and local speakers and mentorships with community leaders, participants receive training, networking opportunities and ongoing support for personal and professional success. This is the ninth year of the program, which has graduated 59 people since 2013. Eight participants took part in a minimum of 30 hours of professional development and mentoring between July and December. 

Graduates of the 2021 Minority Executive Leadership Program include:

  • Carla Benjamin, Welcome to a New Life (Findlay, OH).
  • Kelly Davis, Maumee Valley Habitat for Humanity;
  • Kathleen Greely, Community RE Investment Coalition - Englewood SW;
  • Earl Harris, Vision Church;
  • Rochelle Morrishaw, Women Helping Encouraging Women aka WHEW, Inc.;
  • KaTrice Perry, Gateway Youth Development Program;
  • Sierra Webb, Toledo-Lucas County Public Library; and,
  • Reggie Williams, Frederick Douglass Community Association.

MEL participant Sierra Webb reflected on this opportunity saying “through this program, I have gained an unbelievable amount of support, education and mentorship in the community, and I am so thankful for the opportunity.” Like a number of other participants, she commented how all in this cohort are connected  with each other. “This is an investment in myself. It was done in a fun way and we connected with each other. There was a lot of learning done, and in a safe space that allowed for candid discussion and sharing.”

The Certificate Program was started in 2013 as a result of community leaders of color on the Sustainable Strategies Committee identifying the need for a program that supports emerging minority nonprofit leaders, current nonprofit CEOs/Executive Directors and staff interested in growing into leadership positions. The Committee, led by Doni Miller, worked with The Center to design the program, which looks to build organizational sustainability to transform our community. The goal is to help participants develop their professional skills, better serve as employees in their current positions and be effective nonprofit leaders. This program is sponsored in part by The Andersons.

The Center will begin accepting applications for the next cohort in Spring 2022.

____________________________________________________________________________________

About The Center for Nonprofit Resources

Greater Toledo Community Foundation initiated The Center for Nonprofit Resources in 2003 to improve capacity building for area nonprofits. The work of The Center includes an information and resource center, high quality professional development with certificate programs and one-on-one short-term consulting for nonprofit agencies in our region, as well as providing assistance for grant programs around strategic alliances to support nonprofit sustainability.

For further information about the Minority Executive Leadership Program, contact Milva Valenzuela Wagner, Director, The Center for Nonprofit Resources, 300 Madison Ave., Suite 1300, Toledo, OH 43604, phone: 419.241.9513, email [email protected] or visit https://c4npr.org/be-a-nonprofit-leader/c4npr-minority-executive-leadership-certificate-program/.

TOLEDO, OHIO, January 5, 2022 – Keith Burwell, president of Greater Toledo Community Foundation, is pleased to announce the hiring of Brianna (Bri) Ortiz and the promotion of Jesse Stock.

Bri Ortiz joined the Foundation in May 2021 as a Marketing Intern, and was recently offered full-time, employee status as the Foundation’s Marketing Associate. This is a newly created position, and reflects the growth of the Foundation and the need for additional staff resources. Bri graduated from The University of Toledo in May with a degree in Marketing. She reports to Joanne Olnhausen, Director of Marketing & Communications.

Jesse Stock has been promoted to Philanthropic Services Officer. Jesse joined GTCF in March 2020 as a Philanthropic Services Coordinator, and has been working closely with fundholders to manage those relationships as well as bring new business to the Foundation.  Prior to joining GTCF, he served as Program Director for the Athens County Foundation.  Jesse reports to Mike Greer, Vice President, Philanthropic Services & Advancement.


About Greater Toledo Community Foundation

Greater Toledo Community Foundation is a public charitable organization created by citizens of our community to enrich the quality of life for individuals and families in our area. In existence since 1973, the Foundation has more than 920 funds with assets of approximately $412 million. The Foundation provides philanthropic services for individuals, families, businesses and corporations to meet their charitable giving needs. For more information about Greater Toledo Community Foundation, visit www.toledocf.org or follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn.

# # #

Foundation grants more than $20 million year-to-date in grants and scholarships

TOLEDO, OH, December 20, 2021 – The Board of Trustees of Greater Toledo Community Foundation approved $1,117,119 from various grant funds at its December Board of Trustees meeting. Primarily supporting northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan, the Foundation and its donors have disbursed more than $20 million in grants and scholarships in the community year-to-date.

With assets of $412 million invested, Greater Toledo Community Foundation distributes grants of approximately $18-$20 million annually to causes important to the Toledo region.

The following grants were recently approved from competitive grant and field of interest funds:

Community Funds Impact Grants – a total of $247,672 was awarded to four organizations. The Community Funds Impact Grants program provides seed money for new, innovative programming that addresses unmet community needs.

• Catholic Charities of Jackson, Lenawee & Hillsdale Counties – $50,000 was awarded to support trauma assessment services for children in Lenawee County.

• Hospital Council of Northwest Ohio – $89,650 was awarded to support the Regional Advance Care Planning project.

• Partners for Clean Streams – $51,452 was awarded to support the Community Water Action Project, a multi-agency collaboration that engages citizen volunteers to collect information and monitor water quality in the Lake Erie basin.

• Toledo Zoological Society – $56,570 was awarded to support the Diversity in Field Conservation career exploration program that will offer high school students and recent graduates hands-on paid field experiences in science, technology, engineering and
mathematics.

The next deadline for Community Funds Impact Grant proposals is January 15, 2022.

First Solar Community Giving Fund – a total of $60,000 was awarded to four organizations. Grants from the First Solar Community Giving Fund are made to nonprofit organizations that support “green” education initiatives, support access to clean energy and water in underserved areas, and support furthering development of innovative and sustainable technologies.
• ¬¬Cleveland Water Alliance – $20,000 to support Toledo-related expenses of Erie Hack, a think-tank to address technology-based water quality issues.

• VProject – $20,000 to support Covid-19 vaccination outreach awareness efforts for northwest Ohio.

• RE-volv - $15,000 to support the collegiate Solar Ambassador Fellowship program.

• The Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges - $5,000 to support the First Solar Corporation Scholarship Program.

The next deadline for First Solar grant proposals is February 1, 2022.

Fund for the Elderly – a total of $153,400 was awarded to nine organizations. The Fund for the Elderly supports programs assisting senior citizens, with a priority for projects that enable the elderly to live as independently as possible.
• The Ability Center of Greater Toledo – $25,000 was awarded to provide assistive technology to elderly persons with disabilities living in rural counties.

• Habitat for Humanity, Maumee Valley – $15,000 was awarded to support the home repair program.

• Hospice of Northwest Ohio – $25,000 was awarded to support Sincera Palliative Care.

• MemoryLane Care Services – $25,000 was awarded to support services for older adults diagnosed with dementia, their families and caregivers.

• Mobile Meals of Toledo, Inc. – $25,000 was awarded to support the Meal Client Assistance Program.

• Ohio Living Foundation – $12,400 was awarded to support the Virtual Reality Initiative which offers new avenues for individuals to connect with family and friends, increase their mobility and engage in the arts.

• Ottawa County Family Advocacy Center, Inc. – $8,000 was awarded to recruit and match volunteer companions to assist seniors in maintaining their independence.

• The Sight Center of Northwest Ohio – $10,000 was awarded to support low vision services for seniors.

• VOICEcorps Reading Service – $8,000 was awarded to support over-the-air reading services.

The Sisters of St. Francis (Sylvania) Foundation Donor Advised Fund – a total of $505,350 was awarded to 17 organizations. Grants from the Sisters of St. Francis (Sylvania) Foundation Donor Advised Fund support programs which aid in the fight against human trafficking and/or offer support to its victims; offer support to immigrants and refugees; advance social justice and equal access to opportunity through other programs and strategies; and sustain and renew efforts related to creation and its gifts (ecology, environment, preservation and earth science, etc.).

• Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc. – $50,000 was awarded to support the Immigration Advocacy Project.

• Beach House dba Leading Families Home – $50,000 was awarded to support the PAST project for survivors of human trafficking.

• Bittersweet Farms – $20,000 was awarded to support the Creative Arts program.

• Cherry Street Mission Ministries – $10,000 was awarded to provide shelter care services to women escaping human trafficking.

• Habitat for Humanity-Maumee Valley – $25,000 was awarded to support the home repair program.

• Heartbeat of Toledo – $40,000 was awarded to support the Your First Look program.

• La Conexion – $30,000 was awarded to support the Immigrant Rights project.

• Lourdes University – $50,000 was awarded to support the Like Me program, which is dedicated to diversifying the local educator workforce by recruiting, preparing and supporting students of color for careers in teaching.

• Lutheran Social Services of Northwest Ohio – $11,322 was awarded to support the re-entry program that helps ex-offenders successfully transition back into society.

• Partners for Clean Streams – $17,535 was awarded to support the Clean Your Streams program.

• SewHope – $9,000 was awarded to support the SewHope Academic Enrichment Program in Santa Ana, Guatemala.

• Sisters of St. Francis of Tiffin – $55,693 was awarded to support Project Hope-Proyecto Esperanza.

• Social Services for the Arab Community – $15,000 was awarded to support the Ahlan Wa Sahlan (Welcome) program.

• The Sight Center of Northwest Ohio – $21,800 was awarded to support the Blind Ambition program that helps visually-impaired individuals to secure employment.

• Toledo GROWS – $20,000 was awarded to support community garden programming.

• Water for Ishmael – $30,000 was awarded to support the American School for Women program.

• Zepf Center – $50,000 was awarded to support the Safety Net Emergency Shelter program for youth at-risk of human trafficking exploitation.

Margaret Toth Fund – a total of $103,990 was awarded to two organizations. The Margaret Toth Fund supports programming that provides services for the blind and visually impaired allowing them to live as independently as possible.
• Prevent Blindness, Ohio Affiliate - $40,000 was awarded to support Vison Care Outreach services in northwest Ohio.

• The Sight Center of Northwest Ohio - $63,990 was awarded to support blind and low vision rehabilitative services.

Toledo Walleye Hockey Club’s Wishing Well Fund – a total of $46,707 was awarded to 10 organizations. Grants from the Toledo Walleye Hockey Club’s Wishing Well Fund are made to nonprofit organizations providing programming that promotes overall fitness and wellness of children during cold weather months.
• Adaptive Sports Ohio - $7,500 to purchase adaptive sports equipment to support a sled hockey program for youth with physical disabilities.

• After-School All-Stars Ohio - $5,000 to support a street hockey camp program.

• Anne Grady Services - $8,407 to purchase bike safety equipment and install a course trail for special needs children.

• Believe Center - $5,000 to purchase youth basketball league equipment.

• Girl Scouts of Western Ohio - $3,500 to support equipment upkeep and program participant enrollment in outdoor education program.

• Justice for Sierah, Inc. - $5,000 to support self-defense course programs at Toledo Public Schools and Washington Local Schools.

• Lutheran Social Services of Northwest Ohio - $1,500 to support a yoga and fitness program for Scott High School students.

• The Leipsic Community Center - $4,300 to purchase basketball equipment.

• Toledo Lucas County Police Athletic League, Inc. - $5,000 to support academic enrichment programs.

• Toledo Public Schools - $1,500 to support nutrition and gardening program at Marshall STEMM Academy.

The next deadline for Wishing Well Fund grant proposals is September 15, 2022.

In addition to the grants approved, the Board of Directors authorized significant funds to continue the Equity & Access Initiative started two years ago. This Initiative will continue for an additional three years with funding in the amount of $100,000 per year, bringing the Foundation’s investment in Equity & Access to over $600,000 in five years. The Foundation created the Equity & Access Initiative Fund to proactively address the concerns raised by communities that are disproportionately impacted by inequity and lack of access in the Greater Toledo area. Local nonprofit organizations that are addressing these issues are encouraged to apply for funding.

The next deadline for Equity & Access Initiative Fund grant proposals is August 21, 2022.

Details and applications for all of the Foundation’s funding opportunities, and more, can be found here: https://www.toledocf.org/grants-2/.


About Greater Toledo Community Foundation
Greater Toledo Community Foundation is a public charitable organization created by citizens of our community to enrich the quality of life for individuals and families in our area. In existence since 1973, the Foundation has more than 900 funds with assets of approximately $412 million. The Foundation provides philanthropic services for individuals, families, businesses and corporations to meet their charitable giving needs. For more information about Greater Toledo Community Foundation, visit www.toledocf.org or follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn.

TOLEDO, OHIO, Wednesday, November 10, 2021 –The Stranahan Supporting Organization of the Greater Toledo Community Foundation recently awarded grants totaling $402,913 to 12 organizations and initiatives:

Grants were made to:

  • Baby University – $35,000 was awarded for parenting workshops and home visitation services.
  • Black Swamp Conservancy – $32,160 was awarded to support Land Management services.
  • Food for Thought Toledo, Inc. – $6,400 was awarded to purchase fresh produce for its mobile food pantry.
  • Franciscan Shelters dba Bethany House – $41,422 was awarded to support transitional shelter services for victims of domestic violence.
  • Friends of Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge – $48,100 was awarded to construct accessible trails at the Fox Unit area of the refuge.
  • Hope Toledo – $50,000 was awarded to support the Pre-K Initiative.
  • Ohio Guidestone – $20,714 was awarded to support the expansion of the expressive arts program.
  • The Fair Housing Center – $11,727 was awarded to support the Landlord-Tenant Mediation outreach project.
  • Tutor Smart – $52,000 was awarded to support tutoring services.  
  • University of Toledo Foundation – The Ryan White Program – $30,000 was awarded to support basic needs assistance for patients with HIV.
  • Unruly Arts – $45,390 was awarded to support the Digital Arts Program.
  • YMCA and JCC of Greater Toledo – $30,000 was awarded to support programming at the Wayman Palmer YMCA.

TOLEDO, OH, October 28, 2021 – Greater Toledo Community Foundation and The Blade, in partnership with The Center for Nonprofit Resources, The Andersons, Buckeye Broadband and WTVG-13abc, are happy to announce the 11th Annual Northwest Ohio Nonprofit Innovation & Excellence Award winners, recognizing local nonprofit organizations that stand out for their contributions to our community.

A panel of judges selected the following three organizations to receive recognition at this year’s ceremony:

  • Innovation award: Valentine Theatre
  • Small Organization Excellence award: Friends of Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge
  • Large Organization Excellence award: The Victory Center
From left: Innovation & Excellence Award winners Dianne Barndt-Executive Director of The Victory Center, Aimee Arent-Executive Director of Friends of Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, Jori Jex-Executive Director of the Valentine Theatre, and Jim Stengle-Board Chair of the Valentine Theatre. Photo Credit: THE BLADE/JEREMY WADSWORTH

The 2021 Northwest Ohio Nonprofit Innovation & Excellence Awards presentation took place virtually, on Thursday, October 28th. You can find the link to the video on Greater Toledo Community Foundation's Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/toledocf or LinkedIn page at https://www.linkedin.com/company/toledo-community-foundation.

In addition to being recognized as a leader among northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan’s nonprofits, these winning organizations receive a $5,000 unrestricted grant from Greater Toledo Community Foundation; a $1,000 unrestricted grant from The Andersons; free half-page ad in The Blade; and a one-of-a-kind blown glass art creation by local glass artist Shawn Messenger.

About Our 2021 Innovation & Excellence Award Winners

Valentine Theatre closed their doors in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 crisis and subsequent statewide lock-down. Being seated in close proximity to others for extended periods of time meant indoor theatres were among the first to close and the last to reopen to full capacity. Despite the theatre’s acute financial losses and the uncertainty of when the theatre would reopen, staff was determined the Valentine should remain the cultural hub of downtown Toledo and continue its mission of providing arts education to young people through the pandemic. Two new programs were created to engage the community in the arts: Sessions and StoryTime at the Valentine.

Sessions films local musicians, dancers and artists performing live on the Valentine Theatre stage and keeps the community engaged in the arts and connects local artists to audiences via a safe, professional platform. StoryTime reflected their continued mission to engage Toledo’s youth ages 3-12 in arts education while fostering a sense of community at a time when communities were at their most fractured and isolated. Each StoryTime episode is filmed from the Main stage and features a local notable reading a book that reflects their role in the community.

The community has responded positively to StoryTime and Sessions. As the Toledo Cultural Arts Center, the Valentine is committed to showcasing local artists, and Sessions provides the perfect opportunity to feature local artists and introduce them to a wider audience.


Friends of Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge (FONWR) exists to support conservation in the Lake Erie marshes at Ohio’s only national wildlife refuge complex. Since the beginning, they have grown immensely with over 800 members from numerous states across the country.

Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge is a data-driven program. Data informs three main initiatives:

  • Youth Services;
  • Land Acquisition and Restoration; and
  • Creating the Next Generation Complex.

In 2019, FONWR supported more than 344,000 visits to Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge. Of those visits, 5,500 were students for environmental education programs from across Ottawa, Lucas, Sandusky, Erie and Wood Counties. Underserved schools have the opportunity to apply for an assistance grant through FONWR to ensure a visit to the Refuge. One of the organization’s strategic goals is to assist the refuge by purchasing property and restore land to help with clean drinking water and aid community health. FONWR supports refuge projects that help with maintenance and visitor services. People who visit the refuge gain an understanding of the importance of wetlands which creates lifelong stewardship of the environment.


The Victory Center has existed for 25 years and is committed to providing hope and support to cancer patients and survivors for free to any men, women or children who have had a cancer diagnosis. Since 1996, The Victory Center has reached out to cancer patients and their families providing love, support, compassion, hope and laughter.
With an increase in the number and variety of services offered by more than 100% in the past 10 years, 11,000 services were provided in 2018 alone to those in the community going through the journey of a lifetime. Through their hard work, cooperation and strength of belief in their core mission, The Victory Center has been able to grow into a financially-healthy agency with two locations, and just recently completed the purchase of their own building after leasing space for 25 years.


Special Drawing

One organization in attendance at the virtual ceremony was chosen to win a $1,500 unrestricted grant. The winner of that drawing is the Dyslexia Education Training Center.


About Greater Toledo Community Foundation

Greater Toledo Community Foundation is a public charitable organization created by citizens of our community to enrich the quality of life for individuals and families in our area. In existence since 1973, the Foundation has more than 900 funds with assets of approximately $409 million. The Foundation provides philanthropic services for individuals, families, businesses and corporations to meet their charitable giving needs. For more information about Greater Toledo Community Foundation, visit www.toledocf.org or follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn.


The mission of The Center for Nonprofit Resources is to ensure nonprofit organizations in our region have the information and resources required to operate in an efficient and effective manner. For further information about The Center, visit www.c4npr.org or contact Milva Valenzuela Wagner, Director, at [email protected]

Past Award Recipients

Nonprofit Innovation
Unison Behavioral Health Group (2011)
Bittersweet Farms (2012)
The Arts Commission of Greater Toledo (2013)
Shared Lives Studio / Lott Industries (2014)
Imagination Station (2015)
Advocating Opportunity, Inc. (2016)
A Renewed Mind (2017)
Center of Hope Family Services (2018)
Neighborhood Properties (2019)
Midstory (2020)

Nonprofit Excellence - Large Organization
Hospice of Northwest Ohio (2011)
Advocates for Basic Legal Equality and Legal Aid of Western Ohio, Inc. (2012)
East Toledo Family Center (2013)
Cherry Street Mission Ministries (2014)
Family & Child Abuse Prevention Center (2015)
Catholic Club (2016)
Thomas M. Wernert Center (2017)
Boys & Girls Clubs of Toledo (2018)
Habitat for Humanity-Maumee Valley (2019)
Bittersweet Farms (2020)

Nonprofit Excellence – Small Organization
Read for Literacy, Inc. (2011)
Beach House Family Shelter (2012)
Toledo/Lucas County CareNet (2013)
Water for Ishmael (2014)
Black Swamp Conservancy (2015)
Diabetes Youth Services (2016)
Great Lakes Collaborative for Autism (2017)
Leadership Toledo (2018)
Lucas County CASA (2019)
Baby University (2020)

TOLEDO, OHIO, Thursday, October 26, 2021 – The Board of Trustees of Greater Toledo Community Foundation recently approved $23,789 in grants from the Toledo Walleye Hockey Club’s Wishing Well Fund to four area nonprofit organizations.

Grants from the Toledo Walleye Hockey Club’s Wishing Well Fund are made to nonprofit organizations providing programming that promotes overall fitness and wellness of children during cold weather months.

Grants were made to:

American Heart Association/American Stroke Association –Northwest Ohio Office - $5,000 to purchase AED CPR training kits for local schools.

Believe Center, Inc. - $10,000 to support gym repairs, equipment, program supplies and fees for a local basketball league.

Greater Generations - $3, 000 to purchase equipment and supplies needed to support a volunteer snow removal and fitness program for youth.

Sofia Quintero Art & Cultural Center - $5,789 to support an afterschool soccer and cardio program for students from Escuela SMART Bilingual School.

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