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10/8/14 - Six Semi-Finalists Announced for Nonprofit Excellence Awards


October 7, 2014
Anat Gerstein, 718-793-2211, x100,
Rachel Klein, 917-209-9794,

Six New York Nonprofits Selected as Finalists for 2014
Nonprofit Excellence Awards

Organizations recognized for stellar management practices related to investing in
expansion, navigating organizational turnaround, and managing through a changing environment

(NEW YORK, October 7, 2014) – Today, six diverse nonprofit organizations were announced as finalists for the 2014 New York Community Trust Nonprofit Excellence Awards. The Awards recognize outstanding management practices of nonprofits in New York City, Long Island and Westchester. The six organizations were selected by a panel of 30 nonprofit management experts, from a list of 10 semifinalists recognized earlier this year.

The six finalists serve a wide range of constituents, including those in need of adequate housing; the mentally ill and developmentally disabled; people lacking access to a range of social services; young adults from underserved communities; and individuals dealing with drug addiction.

“With these awards, the New York Community Trust is proud to highlight the nonprofit groups with excellent management,” said Lorie Slutsky, president of The New York Community Trust, a leading funder of nonprofits in the region. “For eight years, we’ve helped share best practices to help the more than 40,000 nonprofit organizations in and around New York City area.”

“These exceptional finalists serve as role models for all organizations. They employ the best management practices, knowing that standard performance is not good enough. These six nonprofits prove that investing in management translates to real results," said Michael Clark, president of the Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York. The 2014 Awards drew a total of 77 organizations – a 25 percent jump over last year. All of them received 360-degree feedback on their management practices, with the goal of improving organizational performance.

This year’s six finalists are:

  • Bowery Residents’ Committee: This Manhattan-based organization is a leading provider of housing and services to more than 10,000 of New York City’s neediest individuals.
  • Community Access: Based in downtown Manhattan, this organization expands opportunities for people to recover from trauma, mental illness and discrimination through affordable housing, training, advocacy and healing-focused services.
  • Graham Windham: Since its founding in 1806, Graham Windham has been a vital force in providing innovative child welfare, educational, vocational, youth development and other social service programs to help New York City's children and families achieve life-changing outcomes.
  • Leake & Watts: Founded as an orphanage in 1831, Leake & Watts continues to provide support today to thousands of children, adults and families each day so they can achieve success tomorrow through a wide variety of early childhood, child welfare, developmental disabilities, special education, and juvenile justice programs.
  • Row New York: Based in Queens and Manhattan, this organization empowers youth from under-resourced communities to build strength, gain confidence, and pursue excellence through the competitive sport of rowing, paired with academic support.
  • Washington Heights CORNER Project: Based in Washington Heights, this organization seeks to better the lives and health of those who use drugs through outreach programs, education, and referral services.
In November, three of the six organizations will be honored at an Awards presentation and a Best Practices Workshop open to all nonprofits. Winners will receive cash awards of $30,000, $20,000 and $10,000 and scholarships for Columbia Business School Executive Education Programs in Social Enterprise.

Now in its eighth year, the Awards program has received more than 630 applications and recognized 23 organizations for outstanding management practices such as implementing extensive systems to manage for results across many different program categories and operational areas, using annual satisfaction surveys among staff and clients to inform service improvements and client communications, and creating a “Junior Board” to attract younger donors and corporate support, as well as to cultivate future leaders by proving a pathway to board membership.

Applicants were asked about their practices in eight key performance areas of nonprofit management identified as crucial by nonprofit professionals nationwide, including: Focus on Results; Board Governance; Financial Management; Diversity and Cultural Competency; Human Resources; Information Technology; Communications; and Fundraising and Resource Development.

“This year’s finalists are an impressive group. They’ve leveraged innovative management practices to achieve excellent outcomes and improve their organizations. We can’t wait to see who wins in November,” said Ronna Brown, president of Philanthropy New York.

NPCC created the Nonprofit Excellence Awards in 2007, and serves as the program’s tax-exempt manager, in collaboration with The New York Community Trust and Philanthropy New York. Along with sponsor WNYC, the program is also supported by The Clark Foundation, the Ford Foundation, Google, Taconic Foundation, McGladrey LLP, Fund for the City of New York, and Columbia Business School Executive Education Programs in Social Enterprise .

A list of past Award winners is available at More information about the Awards, including the Awards' guiding Eight Key Areas of Nonprofit Excellence and a list of Selection Committee members, can be found at


Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York (NPCC) is an umbrella organization
representing and serving some 1,500-member nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations
throughout New York City, Long Island and Westchester. Established in 1984, NPCC
informs and connects nonprofit leaders, saves nonprofits money, helps them manage and
govern themselves better, and protects and strengthens the nonprofit community’s
relations with government. (

New York Community Trust. Since 1924, The New York Community Trust has been
the home of charitable New Yorkers who share a passion for the City and its suburbs—
and who are committed to improving them. The Trust supports an array of effective
nonprofits that help make the City a vital and secure place to live, learn, work, and play,
while building permanent resources for the future. The New York Community Trust
ended 2013 with assets of $2.4 billion in more than 2,000 charitable funds, and made
grants totaling $141 million. The Trust welcomes new donors. (

Philanthropy New York is the primary membership organization for private, family,
corporate and public foundations based in the tri-state New York area. Its 285 member
organizations—including some of the leading private, corporate, family and public
grantmaking foundations in the world—recognize that a vibrant and well-managed
nonprofit sector is fundamental to healthy communities. Collaborating in the Awards
provides Philanthropy New York an important opportunity to celebrate management
excellence among our members’ nonprofit partners, learn from their experience, and help
build greater capacity in the sector. Philanthropy New York is the principal professional
community of philanthropic foundations based in the New York City region with a
mission of enhancing the ability of philanthropists to serve the public good. Philanthropy
New York members recognize that without extraordinary grantees, there would be no
effective grantmaking programs. (

WNYC is the most listened-to public radio station in the country, reaching over 1.1
million listeners each week. Consisting of FM 93.9, AM 820 and, WNYC aims
to inform the public locally and globally on current events, politics, and civic affairs;
export New York’s arts and cultural riches to the rest of the world; and, give voice to
diverse audiences. WNYC produces signature programs including The Brian Lehrer
Show, The Leonard Lopate Show, and Radiolab, among others, and also broadcasts the
best offerings from NPR, American Public Media, the British Broadcasting Company
(BBC), and Public Radio International. With more than 100,000 members, the station
operates as an independent non-profit and has one of the largest membership bases of any
institution in the city. (



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