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Celebration of Philanthropy Awardees

Celebration of Philanthropy

The Community Foundation of Anne Arundel County (CFAAC) is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 Celebration of Philanthropy Awards. This year’s awardees are: Philanthropists of the Year, Kent & Sue McNew; Corporate Philanthropist of the Year, Annapolis Cars; Foundation of the Year, The Chaney Foundation; Volunteer of the Year, Bronwyn Belling; and Young Volunteer of the Year, Grace Gallant. A committee of past Celebration of Philanthropy Award winners selects the award recipients.


Philanthropists of the Year - Kent & Sue McNew

Philanthropists of the Year, Kent & Sue McNew, have inspired the community through their generosity for decades. Beginning with one modest $10 gift to the Anne Arundel Medical Center (AAMC) in 1984, and through their leadership and transformational giving AAMC will open the J. Kent McNew Family Medical Center in Spring 2020. This facility will directly address the rise in mental health issues for every age group as described in the CFAAC community needs assessment Poverty Amidst Plenty VI: On the Road to Progress For All.

The McNew family’s generous philanthropic support across Anne Arundel County nonprofits at both a six-figure leadership and annual gift levels, also includes Arundel Rivers Federation (of which Kent was a founding board member), Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Maryland Hall for Creative Arts, The Providence Center, and the SPCA of Anne Arundel County. President and Chief Development Officer Jan Wood of the AAMC Foundation says, “The McNew’s commit at both a corporate and personal level to nonprofits throughout Anne Arundel County. Their passion for quality health care and in improving the health of the Chesapeake Bay inspires others to get involved at a hands-on level with both financial and volunteer commitments.” AAMC Foundation nominated the McNews for this award.


Corporate Philanthropist of the Year - Annapolis Cars

Annapolis Maritime Museum & Park (AMMP) nominated Annapolis Cars, four dealerships consisting of Annapolis SubaruVolvo Cars AnnapolisAnnapolis Hyundai, and Gateway Subaru, for Corporate Philanthropist of the Year for the ripple effect they create in the community through significant, annual financial donations that address crucial needs in the community. Their support of organizations like AAMP, Box of Rain, Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB), Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Maryland Chapter, and the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition - Central Maryland Chapter is transformational in the lives of Anne Arundel County citizens.

When describing Annapolis Cars, Alice Estrada, executive director of AAMP, says “Everyone in the company from the President and CEO down, are actively engaged year-round in philanthropic and volunteer efforts.” Ms. Estrada goes on to say, “Behind the scenes, Annapolis Cars President and CEO Frank Ferrogine has been a high-impact philanthropic leader for over two decades in Anne Arundel County. Frank leads from the front inspiring employee involvement in local events and small nonprofits.”


Foundation of the Year - The Chaney Enterprises Foundation

The Chaney Enterprises Foundation, nominated by the Anne Arundel Community College Foundation (AACC) for Foundation of the Year, exemplifies the definition of philanthropy by generously supporting a plethora of local nonprofits in the communities where the company does business and where the Chaney families and company employees live. Recently the foundation has contributed to Annapolis Green, Arundel Lodge, Inc., The Boys & Girls Clubs of Annapolis & Anne Arundel County, Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB), the Oyster Recovery Partnership, and over 40 other community nonprofits.

“Their most recent grant to support the construction of the Clauson Center for Innovation and Skilled Trades Anne Arundel Community College will train approximately 950 students per year, by its third year of operation, working to address the shortage of trade workers in our community,” says Vollie Meslon, AACC Foundation Executive Director. The Chaney Foundation also holds the endowed Chaney Scholarship for Sustainable Land Use. Leah, a recipient of this scholarship, says, “Attending college has always been one of my top goals, but accruing debt was a fear. The scholarship gives me the peace of mind to know that debt no longer has to be a determent.”


Volunteer of the Year - Bronwyn Belling

Bronwyn Belling was nominated by both the YWCA of Annapolis & Anne Arundel County & Creating Communities. Bronwyn’s long tenure and continuous impact as a volunteer in Anne Arundel County is evident by the numerous endorsements of her nomination by community leaders and other nonprofits. Through the YWCA, Bronwyn has provided more than 100 hours of service through fundraising, supply drives, and administrative support. Her dedication to the organization has helped raise nearly $500,000 to provide direct support to victims of domestic violence. With Creating Communities, she has organized volunteers to pack and deliver lunches to youth from low-income households attending the organization’s Summer Arts Mentorship Academy. Molly Knipe, YWCA CEO, and Rob Levit, Creating Communities Executive Director, depict Bronwyn as, “one of the most amazing, selfless, funny, articulate, introspective, and kind people we have had the great fortune of knowing both personally and professionally.”

Bronwyn also volunteers with AARP Foundation where she assists elderly individuals who were victims of predatory lending practices. Retired AARP Foundation Litigation Senior Vice President Stuart Cohen, in his endorsement of Bronwyn, described multiple cases in which, without her efforts an elderly member of Anne Arundel County would have become homeless. Bronwyn’s most recent campaign for the county provides Comfort Cases for children transitioning into foster care. She has helped contribute 42 backpacks so far. Bronwyn is a founding member of Anne Arundel Women Giving Together, a women's giving circle, and has helped to sustain the organization through its growth from 15 to today’s 220 members. Since 2006, she has served in a variety of leadership roles and holds the distinction of the longest continuously serving member of the steering committee. Bronwyn also volunteers with Giving Back, Linda's Legacy, Maryland Environmental Trust through the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, and Scenic Rivers Land Trust.


Young Volunteer of the Year - Grace Gallant

The Young Volunteer Award recognizes outstanding leadership and service in the community from a person 21 years of age or younger with a significant record of volunteerism. This year’s Young Volunteer, Grace Gallant, is the founder of Grace’s Graceful Dancers. The program provides free dance classes for young children from underserved neighborhoods. Grace didn't like the idea that a parent's ability to pay stood in the way of children who wanted to take dance lessons. Now in its third year, Grace’s Graceful Dancers coordinated with GiGi's Playhouse Annapolis to provide dance instruction to children with Down syndrome and their siblings. GiGi’s Playhouse Program Chair, Florence August shared, “Grace is driven by what she can do for others, something very generous at her age. She has been a volunteer who is led by her heart and is much loved by her young pupils.”

Grace, a Key School senior, also volunteers at Anne Arundel Medical Center, and with the Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic. Babette Leshinsky, Foreign Language Chair at Key School, said this of Grace, "When she sets a goal, she's going to reach that goal. It's really quite remarkable to see that in a high school student." Grace was nominated by St. Mary's Parish, where she is an active volunteer.

We hope the community will be able to come out to honor the awardees at our Celebration of Philanthropy Awards Luncheon on November 22nd. Click Here to learn more about the event or to purchase tickets! 

For questions about the event or to become a sponsor contact Amy Francis with the Community Foundation of Anne Arundel County at, 410.280.1102 or email amy@cfaac.org.

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