There’s always a fair amount of grumbling over the holiday season, and Holidays 2013 was no different:
- ● “It starts too soon.”
- ● “I’m offended because you say merry Christmas.’”
- ● “I’m offended that you don’t say merry Christmas.”
- ● “Did you hear about the fight that broke out over a $100 computer on Black Friday?”
- ● “It’s more about getting than giving. Whatever happened to the real spirit of the holidays?”
All valid reasons to walk around with your tinsel in a tangle as the year draws to a close and the focus is on the holidays. But the one thing you rarely hear people complaining about is the little glimmer of hope and love and humanity that shines through: secret Santas paying for shoppers’ entire orders at department stores; “giving trees” in church lobbies and in stores, banks and other retail establishments; families “adopting” other, less fortunate families to provide them with gifts they might not otherwise receive.
The holidays are also an important time of year for the fundraising industry, since giving is on everyone’s mind. The giving public sees the face of an organization. People see its brand. They see the work it does. But what they don’t (or rarely) see are the fundraisers behind the organization’s success. Their gifts show an appreciation of the work the fundraisers do to make the organization’s efforts possible, but they don’t know the faces, the names behind it.
That’s why we host the Fundraising Professionals of the Year Awards — to acknowledge and honor the people who raise the money that keep nonprofits afloat. Sure, each year we are only able to honor a miniscule percentage of the people in the field, but we feel that each of our honorees represents the ideals of the profession.
So, won’t you help us acknowledge your peers, colleagues, co-workers, employees, staff members, volunteers, clients or agency partners by nominating them for this year’s awards? It’s easy enough: Just send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with “FOTY nomination” in the subject line, and include the nominee’s name, organization, title and e-mail address; your contact information; a photo of the nominee, if possible; category of nomination; and an explanation of why you’re nominating this person (500 to 1,000 words). This year’s categories are Lifetime Achievement (for a body of work over the course of 30+ years), Fundraising Professional of the Year (for specific fundraising achievements in 2013), Fundraising Stars (for a body of work, a compelling project or special circumstance, an overall attitude or approach, etc.), Rising Stars (up-and-comers with fewer than five years in the sector), the Live It! Award (for fundraisers who champion causes and support philanthropy in their personal lives), Best Fundraising Blog and Best Industry Speaker.