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Nonprofit Leaders and Staff Who Have Gone Above and Beyond

The Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation has been recognizing nonprofit professionals since 2002 through several recognitions and awards for their leadership, commitment and dedication to the mission of their organizations. Here are past award recipients:

Spirit of Minnie Rubek Recognition

Introduced in 2021

The Spirit of Minnie Rubek recognition honors a nonprofit professional who has gone “above and beyond” in their commitment and dedication to their organization and its mission, thereby enhancing the overall effectiveness of the organization.

2022 Honorees: Learn more about each honoree here.

Brad Bezilla, Balance Autism Cedar Rapids  

Kim Brown, Foundation 2 Crisis Services  

Abbie Covenah, United Way of East Central Iowa  

Dawn D’Amico, Horizons A Family Service Alliance 

Sarah Dawson, Hawkeye Area Council, Boy Scouts of America    

Amber Franzen, Aging Services 

Mugisha Gloire, United We March Forward  

Janet Gross, Central Furniture Rescue     

Bob Hebl, Discovery Living, Inc.  

Jackie Lee, Waypoint        

Margie Leonard, His Hands Free Clinic 

Laura Martin, Kids First Law Center            

Dave Mather, St. Paul’s United Methodist Church & Foundation              

Achissa Mushimiyimana, Catherine McAuley Center 

Jill O’Hara, Eastern Iowa Health Center – Dental Health Clinic   

Tora Phelps, The Arc of East Central Iowa      

Jackie Stallman, Metro Catholic Outreach  

Chelsey Steckly, YPN       

Karen Takes, Tanager Place 

Clint Twedt-Ball, Matthew 25           

Michelle Waldron, Junior Achievement of Eastern Iowa         

Dianne Wasson, Mercy Medical Center 

2021 Honorees:

Minouche Bandubuila, YPN  

Dawn Brouwers, His Hands Free Clinic  

Tiffany Bunting, Tanager Place    

Keeyon A. Carter, Wellington Heights Community Church  

Tabitha Downing, Horizons, A Family Service Alliance       

Lisa Gavin, Iowa Legal Aid  

Sandy Gilbert, HACAP  

Aaron Horn, NewBoCo    

Allison Johnson, Girl Scouts of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois  

J’nae Peterman, Waypoint           

Blenda Peterson, Central Furniture Rescue           

Barb Rogen, Foundation 2 Crisis Services               

Grant Smith, National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library               

Sandy Weger, Catherine McAuley Center

Minnie Rubek Staff Excellence Award 

Presented from 2008 to 2019

The Minnie Rubek Staff Excellence Award recognized a nonprofit staff member or group who has quietly gone “above and beyond” in their support of the organization’s mission and has greatly enhanced the overall effectiveness of the organization through their work. 

2019: Tim Feldman, Tanager Place 

2018: Erin Kurt, Junior Achievement 

2017: Tara Richards, Brucemore 

2016: Jean Wiedenheft, Indian Creek Nature Center 

2015: Dave O’Clair, Four Oaks  

2014: J. David Carey, Theatre Cedar Rapids 

2014: Kay Fisk, Neighborhood Transportation Service 

2014: Kandy Sands, Kids First Law Center 

2013: “The Classics” Cedar Rapids Public Library—Jackie Haveman, Karla McMurrin, Mary Lee Kosina, Paula Cufr, Don Troester, Patti Nemec, Carol Hoke, Nancy Geiger, Anne Chapman, Amy Ackman , Dixie Icenbice 

2013: Deb Knake, Four Oaks 

2013: Deanna Clemens Pedersen, Cedar Rapids Museum of Art 

2012: Nancy Lackner, Indian Creek Nature Center 

2011: Roger Johnson, Brucemore 

2010: Laura Ebinger, Kids First Law Center 

2009: Kathy Kaiden, YPN 

2008: Mary Klinger, United Way of East Central Iowa 

2008: Rita Merta, Cedar Rapids Chamber of Commerce 

2007: Corey Luedeman, Iowa Legal Aid 

Nonprofit Leadership Excellence Award 

Presented from 2002 to 2019

The Nonprofit Leadership Excellence Award recognized the leadership and accomplishments of the chief executive officer/executive director of a Linn County nonprofit organization who offers exceptional leadership and creates a lasting impact on their organization and the community. From 2002 to 2012 this award was called the Bridge Builder Award. 

2019: David Janssen, Brucemore 

2018: Brian Stutzman, YPN (posthumously) 

2017: Shannon Ramsay, Trees Forever  

2016: Linda Henecke, Big Brothers Big Sisters 

2015: Kathy L. Hall, Kirkwood Community College 

2014: John Garringer, ASAC 

2013: George Estle, Tanager Place 

2012: Christine Landa, Junior Achievement 

2011: Gail Naughton, National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library 

2010: John Morris, Discovery Living 

2009: Thomas Moore, African American Museum of Iowa 

2008: Tim Charles, Mercy Medical Center 

2007: Rich Patterson, Indian Creek Nature Center 

2006: Jim Ernst, Four Oaks 

2005: Peggy Whitworth, Brucemore 

2004: Betty Hargraves, Grant Wood Chapter of the American Red Cross 

2003: Bob Buntz, Alternative Services 

2002: Kay Jackson, Mercy Medical Center 

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Carrie Walker

Director of Learning


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