Departments — 31 January 2013
Finalists for the Non-Profit ‘Academy Awards’


Finalists for the Third Annual PNC Bank Non-Profit Academy Awards were announced in January at a VIP Announcement Party presented by Broward Health at Passion Nightclub at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.

The 2013 event, to be presented on Feb. 22 by 2-1-1 Broward and hosted by the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, will celebrate the work of Broward County’s non-profit “stars” with a red carpet, searchlights and golden statuettes.

Awards honoring the hard work, dedication and achievements of Broward County’s non-profit organizations and their leaders will be given in eight categories. In addition, the winner of the Publix Community Choice Award, determined by votes received from the community, will be announced at the event.


The 2013 PNC Bank Non-Profit Academy Awards categories and the nominees in each are:

Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Outstanding Non-Profit Organization of the Year


  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Broward County, whose mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported, one-to-one mentoring relationships that change their lives for the better.
  • Hands On Broward, which inspires, equips and mobilizes people to take action to positively affect change in Broward County. The organization connects individuals and groups to meaningful hands-on service opportunities at over 600 nonprofit organizations throughout Broward County.
  • Susan B. Anthony Recovery Center, which transforms families by providing help, hope and healing for mothers and their children so that they can live responsible, drug-free lives.


Patriot National Insurance Group Inc. Non-Profit Organization of the Year – Innovation


  • 4Kids of South Florida, which seeks to find a home for every child in crisis.
  • A Child Is Missing, devoted to assisting law enforcement in the search and early safe recovery efforts of children, the elderly (often with Alzheimer’s), disabled persons and college students via a rapid-response neighborhood alert program utilizing high-tech telephony systems.
  • Neighbors 4 Neighbors, a nationally acclaimed organization based in Miami that was founded in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew to connect diverse populations, plan for and respond to disasters and to build community resources.


Calvin, Giordano & Associates Non-Profit Organization of the Year – Rising Star


  • Heart Gallery of Broward County, which provides innovative programs that help to promote the adoption and enrichment of Broward County’s foster children.
  • KidSafe Foundation, whose mission is to prevent child sexual abuse, bullying and Internet dangers by providing education programs to children, seminars to parents, workshops to teachers and counselors and training to all professionals working with children.
  • No More Tears, which is devoted to providing individualized assistance to victims of domestic violence in the United States.


The Wasie Foundation Non-Profit Organization of the Year – Collaboration


  • ChildNet, which collaborates with The Heart Gallery of Broward County to help Broward’s foster children find forever families.
  • Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Broward County Inc., which collaborated with Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue to create the “Baby Safe Sleep Initiative.”
  • Kids In Distress, which partnered with six local housing agencies, Barry University and over 20 social service agencies throughout Broward County, to apply for a federal grant called “Partnerships to Demonstrate the Effectiveness of Supportive Housing for Families in the Child Welfare System.” In 2012, KIDS, as the lead of the collaborative, was one of five agencies in the nation to be selected for this grant.


Nova Southeastern University Non-Profit Organization of the Year – The Arts


  • ArtServe, an art incubator that develops events, programs and services to help artists turn art into business while providing a positive impact on the lives of children, seniors and at-promise individuals.
  • Arts and Culture Center of Hollywood, which promotes contemporary, innovative artists and programs.
  • Young at Art Museum, whose mission is to inspire and teach children of all ages through art.


AutoNation Lifetime Achievement Award


  • Dr. Abraham S. Fischler, President Emeritus of Nova Southeastern University, who serves on numerous community, education and other boards. During his 22-year tenure as President of NSU, Dr. Fischler strove to push the boundaries of traditional education methods. Today he continues to advocate for change and evolution in the American school system.
  • Dr. Steven Ronik, who has worked at Henderson Behavioral Health for the past 20 years, 16 of which as Chief Executive Officer. His tenure there resulted in accolades for three model programs and services, and his passion to reduce the stigma of mental illness has significantly impacted the community.
  • Dr. Susan M. Widmayer, Executive Director of the Children’s Diagnostic & Treatment Center, who has published extensively in the areas of high risk infancy, maternal attachment and early intervention.


Broward College Outstanding Non-Profit Leader of the Year


  • Dennis Haas, President and CEO of ARC Broward, who has served on the ARC Broward Board of Directors since 1983 and assumed his current positions in 1996.
  • Michael DeLucca, who has over 28 years of experience in health care management and directs a staff of over 90 professionals at Broward Regional Health Planning Council.
  • Charlotte Mather, who has served as the Executive Director/CEO of the Ann Storck Center since December 2010 and has been involved in many other organizations in Broward County.


OK Generators Outstanding Non-Profit Board Leader of the Year


  • Alfredo Aguirre, a Senior Financial Advisor with Merrill Lynch’s Global Private Client Group, who serves on the board of the Children’s Home Society of Florida.
  • Renee Herman, the founder of Harvest Drive, which collects a week’s worth of groceries and the fixings for a complete Thanksgiving meal for 2,000 families in Broward County.
  • Lysandra Russell, whose mission at the Russell Life Skills & Reading Foundation is to eradicate illiteracy among our youth by helping at-risk, low-income and minority children in South Florida achieve success.


The winners in each category will receive a statue and $1,000 for each of their non-profit organizations. The other two finalists will be awarded $500 each. The grants awarded for The Wasie Foundation Non-Profit Organization of the Year – Collaboration category will be divided equally among the collaborating organizations.

All other non-profits nominated will be included in the Publix Community Choice Award, which will be decided by votes received from the community. The community is encouraged to cast votes at

The Non-Profit Academy Awards will kick off at noon with the Memorial Healthcare Systems Red Carpet Reception. Lunch and the awards ceremony will follow at 1 p.m., with the Florida Advocates After-Party at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $75 for general admission, $65 for CLUB 2-1-1 members and $45 for non-profit staff or government representatives. After-party tickets are $25.

For more information, to purchase tickets, or to learn about sponsorship opportunities, call 954-640-5820 or visit

- Robyn A. Friedman

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