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During the Greater Worcester Community Foundation’s annual meeting held on May 17 at Mechanics Hall, the grant-making institution released its 2016 financial results, elected new directors, and corporators and announced the 13th annual Renaissance Award, which recognizes the organization’s nonprofit leader of the year.
T. Diago McClain, founder and CEO of Worcester Pay It Forward (PIF), grew up in Worcester and attended Holy Name High School, where he now coaches basketball three nights a week. In the last 8 years, McClain has transformed the lives of more than 3,500 Worcester area youth ages 4 to 18 through mentoring, coaching, and leadership provided by PIF. The organization is dedicated to the development of young boys and girls through the game of basketball. Its mission is to teach local youth life skills and positive values through athletics, in order for those children to maximize their individual and educational potential.
Children from Holden, Auburn, Shrewsbury, Paxton and Worcester’s most challenged neighborhood have benefited from PIF’s mission and McClain’s leadership. In partnership with Holy Name High School, McClain and PIF provide a variety of programs including the “Tiny Tots” basketball, “Rise Against Bullying,” Summer basketball league, school vacation camps, travel basketball and WSUP Peer Mentoring. Under McClain’s guidance, support, and encouragement, many PIF graduates have gone on to pursue higher education at colleges and universities including Clark University, Newbury College, Worcester State University, Assumption College, Boston College, Assumption College, Salem State University, and Quinsigamond Community College. With the support of PIF and McClain, participants receive opportunities at scholarships, financial assistance, and a chance to cultivate a successful future.
“Diago’s impact on the youth of the Central Massachusetts community goes far and beyond being a mentor and coach. He and his organization provide a sense of hope and opportunity for every one of his participants,” said Ann T. Lisi, GWCF CEO and President. “Diago’s dedication to making a positive impact in the lives of so many disadvantaged youths is inspirational to us all. We’re proud to present him with this award.”
The Renaissance Award was established as an endowed prize through a gift by the late John W. Lund to show the community’s appreciation to those who serve in nonprofit roles. The award comes with a $5,000 cash prize. The award is given to an individual, not an agency, and is intended to be used for personal renewal. Selection is based on a record of dedicated commitment to the nonprofit sector, professional accomplishments, and talent in fostering collaborative relationships.
The annual meeting also publicly released the foundation’s financial reporting for 2016. With total assets exceeding $139.2 million comprised of permanent charitable endowments that are available for local grantmaking; the foundation awarded $6.6 million in grants and scholarships and received more than $5 million in contributions. A complete annual report can be found at greaterworcester.org.
The Foundation also elected the following to the Board for four-year terms:
● J. Christopher Collins
● Timothy Jarry
● Patsy Lewis
● Matthew Wally
● Kimberly Salmon
Chair: Gerald Gates
Vice Chair: Warner Fletcher
Clerk: Carolyn Stempler
Treasurer: Tim Jarry
The Foundation is pleased to announce the winner of the 14th annual Renaissance Award as Gordon Hargrove, Executive Director of Friendly House. The winner was announced today during the Foundation’s annual meeting held at Mechanics Hall, where it also released its 2017 financial results and elected new directors and corporators.
With an operating budget of over $4.8 million, Friendly House provides comprehensive coordinated neighborhood basic services to inner-city families in Worcester. Gordon Hargrove has been with Friendly House for more than 60 years since joining as a volunteer in 1957. He would go onto become Program Director in 1964 and then Executive Director in 1969. Hargrove has been described by his colleagues as instrumental in adapting the focus of Friendly House to meet the ever-changing needs of the citizens of Worcester. Over the decades, he has helped open facilities and shelters, initiated important programming to lift families out of poverty, and established invaluable partnerships with other nonprofits and organizations to ensure low-income Worcester residents receive the care they need. Hargrove’s generosity extends into all aspects of his life, from shoveling driveways of disabled residents to making after-hours calls to ensure shelter placement for the homeless.
“Thousands of low-income families in Worcester have been impacted by Gordon’s leadership and dedication over the decades that he has been involved with Friendly House,” said Ann T. Lisi, president & CEO of the Foundation. “His tireless commitment to serving the Worcester community has demonstrated the utmost merit to be this year’s winner of our Renaissance Award.”
The Renaissance Award is a cash prize of $5,000 awarded annually by the Foundation to recognize the exceptional talent and dedication of those who lead nonprofits in our area. It was established as an endowed prize through a gift by the late John W. Lund to show the community’s appreciation to those who serve in nonprofit roles. Selection is based on a record of dedicated commitment to the nonprofit sector, professional accomplishments, and talent in fostering collaborative relationships.
In addition to the Renaissance Award, the Foundation’s financial reporting for 2017 was released to the public at the annual meeting. With total assets exceeding $157 million comprised of permanent charitable endowments that are available for local grantmaking; the foundation awarded $8.4 million in grants and scholarships and received more than $5.6 million in contributions. A complete annual report can be found at www.greaterworcester.org.
The following were elected to the Board for a four-year term:
The following were elected as new Corporators for a five-year term:
Robyn K. Kennedy
Edward F. Manzi Jr.
Luis G. Pedraja
James M. Salois
Elizabeth J. Tripp
Cesar A. Vega
Mark R. Wetzel
During the Foundation’s 41ST annual meeting held at Mechanics Hall, the grant-making organization released its 2015 financial result and presented its 12th annual Renaissance Award, which recognizes the organization’s nonprofit leader of the year.
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