On March 31, the Central New York Chapter of the American Red Cross was honored in three categories at the 2015 Nonprofit Awards at SRC Arena on the campus of Onondaga Community College in Syracuse. The Red Cross received the Board Leadership Award (Tony Dannible was acknowledged posthumously), Young Leadership Organization Award (C.W. Baker High School Red Cross Club), and Outstanding Fundraising Event Award (Real Heroes Breakfast).
Renae Rokicki, a member of the Central New York Chapter’s Board of Directors and chairwoman of the board’s Real Heroes Breakfast Committee, attended the awards ceremony and wrote a note to her fellow board members following the event. Here’s what Renae, the Project and Strategic Planning Administrator at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, had to say about her experience at the ceremony:
Earlier today I had the pleasure of attending the CNY Business Journal NonProfit Awards ceremony. The Red Cross was there in full force with three tables and a significant representation via presentations and awards. It was a great event representing even greater work on the part of others.
I was the lucky one to accept the Outstanding Fundraising Event Award for the Real Heroes Breakfast, but it was truly done so on behalf of everyone involved. This event could not be the resounding and perpetual success that it is without the work and support of so many. To the Red Cross staff, thank you for the countless logistics handled flawlessly, the marketing and communication, the tireless fund development, and everything in-between. To my fellow Board Members, thank you for your solicitations, personal and professional support, business influence, event attendance and reading some of my copious emails. To the Real Heroes Breakfast Committee, consisting of staff and board members, thank you for giving of your time to go above and beyond with everything mentioned above.
Additionally, I must note the truly touching and well-deserved Board Leadership Award presented posthumously to Tony Dannible. Rita (Board President Rita Reicher) and Chris (Board member Chris Didio, who worked with Tony at Dannible & McKee) gave impactful speeches. Tony's wife, who accepted the award, their children, and the Dannible & McKee members were obviously touched, as was the audience members who gave two standing ovations in Tony’s honor.
Lastly, (Red Cross Volunteer Specialist) Julie Mucilli presented the C.W. Baker High School Red Cross Club with the Young Leadership Organization Award. It is no doubt because of the great support of Julie and the work of the Red Cross that a youth group is interested in volunteering for the cause.
In closing, Staff and Board, please take a moment to pat yourselves on the back for the fine work you do on behalf of the Red Cross and the people it serves.
Here’s a look at Red Cross honorees from the 2015 Nonprofit Awards:
TONY DANNIBLE The co-founder of the Syracuse accounting firm Dannible & McKee, LLP, Tony Dannible joined the Board of Directors of the American Red Cross Central New York Chapter in 2005 and was appointed treasurer. He also served as Chair of the Finance Committee and a member of the Executive Committee, and the board and chapter relied on his leadership and financial expertise.
Known for his quick wit and humor, Tony was a generous supporter of Red Cross events such as Great Chefs. He chaired the board’s Events Committee in 2014 and agreed to chair the Philanthropy Committee this past summer before he experienced health issues. Tony died in December having made a tremendous impact on the Red Cross and several other organizations in the Syracuse community.
Click here to visit the Dannible & McKee website for more about Tony.
C.W. BAKER HIGH SCHOOL RED CROSS CLUB Now in its second year, Baker’s Red Cross Club has been a leader in the American Red Cross International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Action Campaign program. The IHL Action Campaign is a national program for students to raise awareness about the importance of IHL. Led by club President Mindy Striep, the eight members of the Baker club have created thought-provoking campaigns to educate their classmates and community about IHL and how we are all affected by global affairs.
Click here for more information about Red Cross clubs and the IHL campaign.
REAL HEROES BREAKFAST Each December, the Red Cross honors several Central New Yorkers for their heroic actions at its annual Real Heroes Breakfast in Syracuse. The event celebrates the Red Cross mission of alleviating human suffering by recognizing people from throughout the area who have performed heroic acts in life-threatening situations.
The 2014 honorees ranged from a 5-year-old Auburn girl who saved her mother’s life by calling 9-1-1 to the truck driver in the National Guard who orchestrated the dramatic Thruway rescue in December 2013. To watch the stories of the 2014 award winners, click here to visit CNY Central’s website.
The Real Heroes breakfast has raised more than $1.6 million for the Red Cross of Central New York in its 16-year history. Those funds are crucial to providing Red Cross services to Central New York residents.
Save the Date: The next Real Heroes Breakfast will be held Dec. 2, 2015, at the Oncenter in Syracuse.
Photos: 1. The American Red Cross award winners following the 2015 Nonprofit Awards; 2. the family of Tony Dannible accepted his posthumous Board Leadership Award; 3. the C.W. Baker Red Cross Club received the Young Leadership Organization Award.