Congratulations, 2020 Award Recipients!!
Youth in Philanthropy recognizes an outstanding youth (or youth group), age 18 or younger, demonstrating the true spirit of philanthropy through time, treasure, and talent.
Recipient: Jeremy Wernick, Hatsgiving
Jeremy Wernick is a 17 year old senior at Shaker High School. He came up with the concept of Hatsgiving when he was eight years old. That was the second year he chose to shave his head to raise money and awareness for childhood cancer research. He realized how cold his bald head got and started thinking about kids who lose their hair during chemotherapy. So he developed the idea of Hatsgiving.
The first official collection was held in 2013 with one collection site, Forts Ferry Elementary School. 226 hats were collected and distributed to children undergoing cancer treatment at The Children's Hospital at Albany Medical Center. Hatsgiving has partnered with more locations to help with collection and donations have increased every year. In 2019, Hatsgiving collected 6,449 hats for children at 60 cancer centers in 43 states plus Washington DC.
Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser: recognizes a local volunteer fundraiser who demonstrated the true spirit of philanthropy through their volunteer fundraising efforts.
Recipient: Hamad Algahreeb, Education Consultant | DEI Coach | Keynote Speaker | Curriculum Designer | Strategy Advisor
Hamad is an enthusiastic educational leader and consultant. He enjoys working with purposeful organizations to support them in strategically navigating their journey to fulfilling their mission through humanistic leadership. Hamad is passionate about social justice, minority issues, cultural competence, and sustainable community building.
After spending over a decade as an educator at schools, universities, and educational institutions in the United States, South America, and the Middle East, he decided to harvest his diverse knowledge and invest it in consulting, training, and coaching organizations that focus on education, access, diversity, equity, and inclusion. Hamad is committed to empowering marginalized lives and currently working on a book to shed more light on intersectionality.
Hamad is an active alumnus of global and local schools, organizations, and programs including New York Institute of Technology, University of Bahrain, AIESEC, Fulbright Alumni Association, Department of State-MEPI, National Society of Leadership & Success, New Leaders Council. He currently sits on the board of GLSEN Upstate NY, With Our Voice, and the AIESEC Alumni Association.
Outstanding Fundraising Group, Recognizes a group of individuals demonstrating the true spirit of philanthropy through time, treasure, and talent.
Recipient: Saratoga Hospital Volunteer Guild
Founded in 1948, the Saratoga Hospital Volunteer Guild has continued the longtime tradition of service to the health and well-being of the greater Saratoga Hospital community, much in the same humanitarian spirit as the volunteers who founded the Hospital 125 years ago. Every year, the Guild’s all-volunteer membership provides approximately 50,000 hours of helping hands in 40 service areas across Saratoga Hospital facilities. Additionally, the Guild is one of Saratoga Hospital Foundation’s largest donors, having gifted more than $5 million dollars toward Hospital projects and programs over the years.
The Volunteer Guild is a three-time recipient of the Healthcare Association of New York State (HANYS) Auxiliary of the Year Award. In 2020, the Guild made its third installment of $180,000 on three pledges totaling $900,000 for the Community Health Center, Cardiac Catheterization Suite, and state-of-the-art Smart IV Pumps. In addition to numerous fundraising projects, the Volunteer Guild operates two retail shops—Treasures Thrift Shop and the Gift Shoppe—the proceeds of which are donated to the Hospital. Learn more about the many contributions of the Saratoga Hospital Volunteer Guild at www.saratogahospital.org/volunteering.
Outstanding Young Professional Fundraiser: recognizes a local young professional fundraiser, under the age of 40, who has demonstrated outstanding fundraising success in their career.
Recipient: Stevie L. Fellows, Director of Development, Wellspring
After a few years of working in the Sales and Marketing world Stevie quickly learned that her passion was fueled by a desire to help others. She was fortunate enough to land a job in the Development Office at Boston Children’s Hospital, the #1 pediatric hospital in the country. After a few years of city-living, Stevie decided it was time to return to her roots and move back home to the Capital Region, where she quickly transitioned to Director of Annual Giving for the Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital of St. Peter’s Health Partners. Not long after that, a Director of Development role opened up at Wellspring, the domestic violence and sexual assault resource for Saratoga County, and Stevie jumped at the opportunity. At Wellspring, Stevie oversees both the Development and Marketing departments while simultaneously working on a $2 million Capital Campaign. The Capital Region community, who time after time shows their true dedication to helping others in need, continually amazes her. Stevie happily lives in Saratoga, NY with her husband Erik, who also works in Development at the Double H Ranch, and their big red golden doodle, Clark.
Outstanding Fundraising Professional: recognizes a local professional fundraiser who has demonstrated outstanding fundraising success in their career and commitment to the fundraising profession/nonprofit sector.
Recipient: Bonnie St. Onge, CFRE, Director of Development, IPH
Bonnie St. Onge has 23 years of meaningful experience in all aspects of philanthropy. She is an experienced not-for-profit leader with demonstrated success in fund development, grant writing and reporting, corporate solicitation, major gifts, event management, and capital campaigns. Her strengths are in problem solving, consensus building, interpersonal communication, strategic planning, building teams and collaborative partnerships. She has been employed with IPH, formerly Interfaith Partnership for the Homeless since 2008 and has been an integral part of growing the agency from a budget of $1.5 million to $4.5 million.
Previously, she served as Director of Development at Vanderheyden and Director of Marketing and Communications at IKON Office Solutions. While working in the for profit field, Bonnie served on several boards of directors including Vanderheyden, Rensselaer County Chamber of Commerce, and Start Children’s Center.
By increasing levels of corporate, foundation and local grants on an annual basis, Bonnie continues to raise the bar in fundraising. During the course of her career with IPH she has raised over $8,000,000. Funding has been secured for emergency homeless shelters, health services, Ambassadors Employment Program, housing and community programs. With determination and focus on the needs of IPH, Bonnie is responsible for approximately 24% of IPH’s annual budget.
Bonnie along with the IPH team secured over $2,700,000 for a capital campaign which resulted in the renovation of two historic buildings on Sheridan Avenue. The buildings are now home to numerous services that are available to homeless individuals and families and those who are living on the brink of homelessness. The Capital Campaign for IPH was the second in Bonnie’s career.
Bonnie has been involved in every step of fund development, including program development, proposal writing and submission, and program evaluation and reporting.
Recently Bonnie became a Certified Fund Raising Executive and met a series of standards set by CFRE International which include tenure in the profession, education and demonstrated fundraising achievement for not-for-profit organizations. Bonnie has been a member of the Grant Professionals Association, Women in Development of Northeastern New York, the Association of Fundraising Professionals (Hudson Mohawk Chapter), and the Gift Planning Group of Northeastern New York. She works closely with the Advanced Fundraising Executives in the Capital District through the Association of Fundraising Executives.
Outstanding Small Business Award: recognizes a local small business with less than 50 employees, demonstrating the true spirit of philanthropy through time, treasure, and talent.
Recipient: Whip My Butta Organics
Whip My Butta Organics began when both of my children were born with the pesky skin ailment of eczema. In an unsuccessful search of a natural and effective product, I began researching different natural oils and butters and started concocting my own formula. Through much trial and error, my formula improved their skin within 3 days. With much positive feedback from friends and family about the effectiveness of my product, I knew I had to start this business. With the business, I hope to bring more awareness to natural skincare while helping those in need through fundraising and assisting non profit organizations.
- Facebook: Whip My Butta Organics
- Instagram: @whipmybuttaorganics
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org