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Philanthropy Thought Leadership

Annual National Philanthropy Day celebrates fundraising heroes in Atlanta

By Diaka Burke, marketing and events associate, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

On October 29, the Association for Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Greater Atlanta Chapter executed their annual event: National Philanthropy Day, a celebration of greater Atlanta’s philanthropic advocates and 1,000 other like-hearted individuals traditionally held in the Georgia Aquarium’s captivating ballroom. Year after year, AFP outdoes themselves in style and execution, but this year’s coronavirus brought up a set of new challenges, and the association tackled this head-on.

From the captivating speakers to the beautiful messaging on how Atlantans are showing up and showing out for their neighbors, this year’s virtual event was nothing short of spectacular! The event recognized traditional awards including Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year, Kim Gresh and three teen volunteers of the year, Siya Kalra, Mary Grace Morrison and Grey Cohen. Mary-Kate Starkel, director of development at redefinED Atlanta, earned the Stellar Professional Award and Kiana Lawrence, major gifts and planned giving manager at Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta, was recognized with the Young Professional Award.

Because 2020 fundraising has largely been focused on COVID-19 relief, AFP added new awards this year:

  • The Spirt of Collaboration Award went to Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta and United Way of Greater Atlanta for the COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Fund, which to date has awarded more than $18 million to hundreds of nonprofits across the region for localized pandemic relief. 
  • The Best Pivot of 2020 Award went to YMCA of Metro Atlanta for its efforts to shift traditional programs and services to provide childcare for the children of essential frontline workers and to expand food distribution services.

The Community Foundation is honored to be recognized alongside our partners at United Way for our efforts boosting the region’s nonprofit sector to alleviate challenges brought on by the pandemic. Congratulations to the countless volunteers who make this annual event possible, they are recognized along with details on the individual winners here


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