Advancing Racial Equity In Philanthropy, Non-Profit, and Fundraising
Advancing Racial Equity In Philanthropy, Non-Profit, and Fundraising
The Denise Stennis Awards honor leadership excellence in the field of nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising and is named in memory and honor of Denise Stennis. The Nomination Period is open and will run through September 7 EXTENDED. The recipients will be honored at the Breakin' It Down 20th Anniversary Conference on Friday, October 27, 2023.
Breakin' It Down Planning Committee
The Denise Stennis Awards recognize individual and organizational leadership excellence in the field of nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising. Leadership is broadly defined and includes efforts in service to under-represented and underserved communities in the Chicago area; integration of racial equity with sustained strategic collaborations; and lifting pragmatic, action-oriented, and tenacious change makers in the field. The objective of the Denise Stennis Awards program is not only to recognize those who do contribute but also to inspire others to make similar contributions to the field.
Dedicated service will also be recognized based on time and level of involvement in various programs and activities. Service to the field should demonstrate the nominee’s commitment to advancing racial equity in the field of nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising; willingness to give time and effort; and the ability to draw together varied resources to affect transformative change in the field.
These awards are named in memory and honor of Denise Stennis, a community leader, mentor, friend, and founding member of the Breakin' It Down conference. Well-known and regarded in the metropolitan Chicago nonprofit community, Denise served a number of social benefit, educational and cultural organizations. She directly influenced countless nonprofit decision-makers, fundraising volunteers, and the work as well as careers of many Chicago area development professionals. Denise wrote: “I use the word serve as a description of my responsibilities to the nonprofit community. I do not take that responsibility lightly. My love and faith in mankind is a driving force in my commitment to the profession and to those non-profits I have been fortunate to work with.”
We honor her dedication to advancing racial equity and expanding opportunities to diverse communities and professionals in the nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising field.
For twenty years, the Breakin' It Down Planning Committee has held conferences focused on engaging diverse nonprofit and fundraising professionals in empowering conversations about the present state and future of the nonprofit, philanthropic, and fundraising sector and its impact on under-represented and underserved communities in the Chicago area. At that time, the field of nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising was undergoing noticeable professionalization, making nonprofits and the under-represented and underserved they sought to help more vulnerable to new institutional pressures and expectations as well as goal displacement, resource dependencies, and career quality of BIPOC professionals in the field. A group of nonprofit and philanthropic leaders, including Denise Stennis, spearheaded an inaugural conference in 2003.
The Breakin' It Down conference brings together seasoned and emerging nonprofit professionals and administrators, academics, community activists, students, and other stakeholders who serve under-represented and underserved communities, with experts and distinguished philanthropic, nonprofit, and community leaders for a day of speakers, plenary panels, workshops, and professional speed networking with funders. It uses an interactive agenda that seeks to bring balance to expressive and instrumental elements and focuses on key challenges in the field, encouraging professional excellence, promoting professional opportunity through networking and collaboration, and exploring best practices and different sustainability strategies. Participants leave with an increased understanding of a substantive range of pertinent issues and an increased ability to be agents of change in our field.
The history and success of the Breakin' It Down conference are grounded in the culture of volunteerism and empathy embodied by its founders and committee members over the years. In honor of dedicated, tenured service to under-represented and underserved communities in the Chicago area, and for championing and leading the efforts to advance racial equity in the field of nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising, these award are named in memory and honor of Denise Stennis.
2022 - Deborah Bennett, Polk Bros. Foundation
2019 - Sharon Bush, Grand Victoria Foundation
2019 - Erie Neighborhood House
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED
Individual: US $1,000
Nonprofit Organization: US $1,000
Nomination Period Opens: August 1, 2023
Nomination Period Closes: September 7, 2023 (EXTENDED)
Nomination Review Process: September 13, 2023 - September 15, 2023
Notification and Acceptance Period: September 18 - 22, 2023
Award Winners Announced: September 26, 2023
BID conference and ceremony announcing award winners: October 27, 2023
PLEASE NOTE: Submissions and acceptance of award automatically constitute approval for Breakin it Down to use the information for promotional activities. The individual and organization selected for the Denise Stennis Awards may be featured in various promotional materials, without compensation. Photos and quotes may be displayed for promotional purposes including social media, website, electronic, and printed materials.
The Denise Stennis Awards are open to nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising professionals and nonprofit organizations serving under-represented and underserved communities in the Chicago area, who meet the eligibility criteria. Nominations may be made by anyone, e.g., the organization of the candidate, community members, funders, or members of any of the Breakin it Down partner organizations. Self-nomination is also encouraged. During their term service, BID Committee members are not eligible to nominate or for nomination.
Past nominations and past honorable mentions are eligible for consideration.
Awardees may receive this award more than once, but only for completely distinct/separate achievements or service and then only after five (5) years following the award, except under special circumstances approved by the Breakin' It Down Planning Committee. Their nominations package must be significantly different from their previous winning nomination package. This means it must be at least 50% different in both content and wording (i.e. it should reflect current informationand not simply rehash previous information.
To be considered, a nominee must meet all eligibility criteria and have a nomination package comprising all required materials.
Nominators should review the following criteria to determine if the candidate is eligible for nomination:
INDIVIDUAL AWARD CRITERIA
ORGANIZATION AWARD CRITERIA
All nominations must be submitted electronically, and should include the following:
The nomination information must be submitted electronically, using this page.
The nomination package should include a resume or similar document that describes the candidate's professional background and achievements and other relevant activities. For organizations, a brochure or information sheet outlining the programs should be included.
Completed nomination packages for the Denise Stennis Awards must reach Breakin' It Down's Review Committee by 11:59 pm on September 7, 2023. Receipt of all nominations will be acknowledged by email only. Please allow one week after the deadline for such notification. Late or incomplete nominations will not be considered after September 12.
The nomination package must also include the following information:
(Maximum 750 words)
Describe why the nominee’s accomplishments should receive the award. The nomination should describe the nominee's work and how it is aligned with the purpose, eligibility, and/or criteria of the award, the impact on the field (nonprofit, philanthropy, and fundraising), the significance of this effort, and the benefits to the under-represented and underserved communities that they serve in the Chicago area.
(Maximum three pages: Typed, 12 pt font, single-spaced)
The supporter's contact information must be included in the letter, preferably on letterhead.
To assist the review committee in its deliberations, the support letters should contain information not addressed in the nomination narrative. The support letters should clearly describe the way the award’s purpose and criteria have been met and provide specific, concrete examples for the following
In addition, news or magazine articles written about the nominee may be included.
If you have a supporting document to attach to the nomination form, each file must be less than 10 MB and the total size of all attachments must be less than 15 MB. You can also scan and feel free to send us, with the Subject: Supporting Documents [Nominee's Name] by email. Note: Photos and documents cannot be returned. Please send to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Award Committee's Review Sub-Committee (up to five members) comprising BID committee members and external professionals in the field conducts in-depth qualitative assessment in order to select nominees and, subsequently, vote to determine the award winner. If appropriate, the Sub-Committee may select one individual award and one organization recipient in a given year. In the event that two nominations are tied for first place, the Review Sub-Committee will review each nomination for a second time and provide new rating numbers for each nomination criteria. The nomination with the highest total ranking number will be the awardee. Results of the tie-breaker rating will be annotated on a separate worksheet ("TIE-BREAKER worksheet") and will be signed by Award Chair for authenticity. In a rare occurrence, the two nominations tied for first place may be concurrently awarded, subject to the approval of the Breakin’ It Down Planning Committee. At the discretion of Awards Committee, an Honorable Mention may be recognized.)The Award Committee may recommend not to present an award if the nominations do not meet the stated award criteria. The awards need not be offered if the BID Planning Committee so decides in a particular year. All decisions of the Award and Breakin' It Down Planning Committees are final and not subject to appeal.
Conflict of Interest Disclosure
Any perceived or real conflicts of interest should be reported and discussed with the Review Committee chair. This includes but is not limited to whether a review committee member is a relative, partner, program collaborate, funder, employee, former employer, or former consultant. Additionally, if a review committee member is currently employed by the same employer or institution of one of the nominees, the committee chair should be made aware of the situation. The committee chair will inform committee members of these relationships.
Potential awardees will be contacted by the Awards Committee chair by phone/email provided at the time of nomination and will then be required to complete and submit the online Agreement to Denise Stennis Awards Terms and Conditions. within three (3) days of notification or the award may be forfeited and an alternate awardee may be determined. Return of any award notification as undeliverable may result in disqualification and an alternative may be determined The W9 for potential awardees will be sent to the email address submitted at the time of nomination. Potential awardees will be required to complete and sign the W9 and return the document no less than twenty-one (21)days before the award presentation ceremony.
Should a nominee not be selected in the initial year of submission, the nomination will be carried over and considered active for the next award cycle. Thus, a nomination will be considered at least twice. The award need not be made to count as an award cycle.
Updated materials to enhance the original nomination are highly encouraged and may be submitted if such materials are received online at BID's website prior to or on the next appropriate nomination deadline and comply with current eligibility qualifications.
In all cases, Breakin' It Down will notify the nominator as to the status of the nomination.
The Denise Stennis Awards is presented by the chair of the Awards Committee during a virtual or in-person ceremony, to be held as part of the Breakin' It Down conference or as separate event. The recipients of the awards receive a feature on BID's website, Facebook, a public announcement, commemorative award, monetary award, and complementary full-BID conferenec registration for the awardee and a companion or organization representative. The nominator(s) of the awardee(s)r is also invited to the award ceremony and presented with one registration.
The Denise Stennis Awards are not conferred in absentia. Awardees must be present at the ceremony to receive the award. If they are not able to be present, they must send someone on their behalf. Organization awardee must send an organization representative.
Prizes/awards are amounts received by an individual or non-profit organization primarily in recognition of religious, charitable, scientific, educational, artistic, literary or civic achievement or received as a result of entering a contest.
Forms must be completed and submitted to the Awards Committee at email@example.com, no less than 21 days before the award ceremony.
Award Payment to U.S. Citizens, Resident Aliens, and Non-Profit Organizations
All prizes of $600 or more are reportable by the Breakin' It Down's Fiscal Sponsor on Form 1099- MISC
• Amount is subject to Federal Income Tax and potentially subject to State Income
Forms Required for Award Payment to U.S. Citizens
Forms Required for Award Payment to Resident Alien
Forms Required for Award Payment to Non-Profit Organization
Award Payment to Nonresident Aliens
IRS regulations require that Nonresident Aliens (NRA) who are receiving a prize/award are subject to 30% federal withholding on the payment. Generally, tax treaty provisions are not available to exempt a prize/award from the 30% tax withholding. Breakin' It Down, through its fiscal sponsor, is required to withhold 30% from the amount and remit it to the IRS. The NRA will receive the balance.
Forms Required for Award Payment to Nonresident Alien
This Denise Stennis Awards is subject to all federal, state, and local laws. This awards contest and Official Rules are governed and interpreted by the laws of the State of Illinois, without regard to its conflict of law provisions.
By participating in the Denise Stennis Awards contest and submitting an entry, or agreeing to have an nomination entry submitted, each nominator/entrant agrees to (i) be bound by these Official Rules, including all nomination requirements, and (ii) waive any and all claims against Breakin' It Down and its fiscal sponsor, which is providing the prize(s), if any, and their fiscal sponsor, affiliates, officers, directors, employees, agents, volunteers, licensees, and any and all other organizations and individuals associated with the Denise Stennis Awards contest, and all of their respective officers, directors, employees, agents and representatives (collectively, "Released Parties") for any injury, damage or loss that may occur, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from the participation in the Denise Stennis Awards contest or from the receipt or use of any Prize (or any portion thereof) or any activity related to the receipt or use of any Prize (or any portion thereof).
By entering the Denise Stennis Awards contest or submitting any nomination for the Awards contest, each entrant or nominator gives their express permission to be contacted by Breakin It Down planning committee members and/or its fiscal sponsor by telephone, e-mail and/or postal mail for contest purposes. The Winner, by acceptance of the Prize, grants to Breakin' It Down the right to publicize such Winner's entry, name, employer, location (city and state), photograph, voice, statements and/or other likeness and prize information for advertising, promotional, and/or any other purpose in any media or format now known or hereafter devised, throughout the world, in perpetuity, without limitation and without further compensation, consideration, permission or notification, unless prohibited by law.
Breakin' It Down will post the Nomination Guidelines, which are subject to change without notice, at Denise Stennis Awards | Breakin' It Down Chicago (breakinitdownchicago.org and names of the winners online at www.breakinitdownchicago.org.
Posthumous awards will be made only when knowledge of the individual's death is received after the recipient has been announced. Nominees must be living at the time of their nomination. Nominations of individuals known to be deceased are not accepted.
FORFEITURE OF DENISE STENNIS AWARD
A Denise Stennis Award may be forfeited and an alternative successful nomination may be selected, if:
The nomination period for the 2023 Denise Stennis Awards will run from August 1 to September 7. Only online nomination forms will be accepted.
Please Note: Information on the nomination form cannot be saved. All fields must be completed in order for the nomination form to be considered.
If you have a supporting document, each file must be less than 10 MB and the total size of all attachments must be less than 15 MB. You can also scan and feel free to send us, with the Subject: Supporting Documents [Nominee's Name] by email. Note: Photos and documents cannot be returned. Please send to: firstname.lastname@example.org.