NPD 2017 Honorees

The Nominations process for the 2018 Honorees is open through May 31. Click here for instructions to nominate.

Each year AFP Golden Gate marks one day to celebrate the spirit of giving by recognizing exemplars in philanthropy and social change. On Friday, November 10, 2017 awards were presented to individuals and institutions whose giving to the community inspires all of us, and whose video portraits and personal remarks at the luncheon lifted up the whole house. Congratulations to the NPD 2017 Honorees!


Outstanding Youth Philanthropist
Freya Eriksen 

Freya Eriksen developed an early habit of volunteering at nonprofits when she entered two programs at CuriOdyssey in San Mateo at the age of 13. Her volunteer hours at the zoo, museum, and summer camp over the past three years have helped this nonprofit continue to educate the public about the wildlife native to California and the science that underpins our understanding of them. One of CuriOdyssey’s missions is to train youth for future careers in animal ecology. For Freya, it’s "mission accomplished," as she prepares to enter Iowa State University’s animal ecology program in the Class of 2018. 

Vineyards Award

YES Nature to Neighborhoods 

Launched in 1999, YES Nature to Neighborhoods (formerly Youth Enrichment Strategies) has grown from week-long summer camps for children to also include year-round outdoor, leadership, and wellness programming for youth ages 8-18, and for adults and whole families. One-on-one mentorship and overnight outdoor excursions deepen participants’ connection to nature while helping them develop leadership skills, achieve academic success, and navigate the pathway to college and meaningful employment.

Hank Rosso Outstanding Fundraising Professional
Janelle Cavanagh
Western Regional Director, Global Fund for Women 

After serving in the Peace Corps, Janelle Cavanagh realized that the best way to resolve many of the world’s struggles was to support the leadership of women and girls. She earned a master's of social welfare at UC Berkeley, and then oversaw a $36 million campaign at United Way of the Bay Area and helped major donors meet their goals, including starting a girls’ scholarship program. As Chief Development Officer at Girls Incorporated of Alameda County, she led a successful capital campaign to open a new after-school girls’ program in Oakland. Currently, at Global Fund for Women, Janelle secured a 158% increase in support for international grassroots women’s groups. She sits on the board of the Women’s Funding Network, working with women’s foundations around the world. And as the co-founder of the UC Berkeley Certificate in Fundraising and Volunteer Management program, she teaches others to become fundraisers for their passions.

Outstanding Volunteer
Josefina C. Baltodano, J.D. 

Josefino Castillo Baltodano has proven herself to be a champion fundraiser and institutional leader at multiple nonprofits and academic institutions in the Bay Area and beyond. But what seems most amazing is what she has accomplished on a volunteer basis, serving in leadership roles on the boards of nonprofits and institutions dedicated to education, healthcare, and cultural diversity for many years. The diversity of her interests encompasses development, educational policies, finance, and student life. Besides giving so generously of her talents and experience, she also contributes as an individual donor to the causes close to her heart.

Outstanding Foundation or Grantmaking Organization
Dean & Margaret Lesher Foundation 

The Dean & Margaret Lesher Foundation is a private family foundation whose mission is to enhance the vibrancy and quality of life for the residents of Contra Costa County.  Established in 1989, the work of the Foundation has touched many lives and communities through grants in three focus areas: significant educational support for young people, a commitment to the visual and performing arts essential to a vibrant community, and support for a wide variety of programs to nurture children and strengthen families. The Foundation supports its nonprofit partners in performing arts and theater venues, music and dance companies, homeless shelters, food banks, and job-training programs, as well as in literacy and after-school enrichment programs.

Outstanding Foundation or Grantmaking Professional
Kathleen Odne
Executive Director, Dean & Margaret Lesher Foundation (1994-2017) 

Kathleen Odne is retiring after serving for twenty-three years as executivedirector of the Dean & Margaret Lesher Foundation in Walnut Creek. It provides grants to nonprofits in Northern California that support K –12 education, higher education (including scholarships), the visual and performing arts, and programs benefiting children and families. But Kathleen's influence goes beyond Contra Costa County. She serves on the board of the National Center on Family Philanthropy and developed the Council on Foundations’ Stewardship Principles for Family Foundations as a committee chair there. You might say she is one of the deans of foundation professionals. 

Outstanding Corporate Grantmaker

Philanthropically, Oracle aims to advance education, protect the environment, and enrich community life. Each year, Oracle Giving donates millions of dollars in cash to nonprofit organizations that provide local and global programs, while Oracle volunteers in 45 countries donate more than 110,000 hours of their time and talent to support nonprofit organizations and their beneficiaries. The company's education initiatives—Oracle Academy and Oracle Education Foundation—help students develop the technical acumen and creative confidence to become the innovators of tomorrow. In 2015, Oracle made history by committing to build a home for Design Tech High School—a pioneering California public charter high school—on its headquarters campus.

Outstanding Philanthropists
Franklin & Catherine Johnson 

Franklin P. “Pitch” and Catherine Johnson are proud of their legacy of giving in the Bay Area.  They have long followed a simple philosophy with their philanthropy: giving back to the community they grew up in.  As founder of one of Silicon Valley’s first venture capital firms in 1965, Pitch has long advocated for combining the worlds of venture capital investment with traditional philanthropic practices.  He and Cathie have devoted substantial resources to a wide variety of educational, cultural and community organizations, with the hope that all Bay Area communities will enjoy the impact of new economy.  Special areas of focus have included youth development and education, the arts, higher education and entrepreneurial training programs.  

Lifetime Achievement 
Ann & Gordon Getty 

The Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation has been helping build awareness and audiences for the performing arts for over thirty years. The Foundation supports organizations devoted to classical music as well as art education and the humanities. Nominator comments have praised the Gettys as creative catalysts and visionary leaders for their dedicated and significant contributions of time and treasure to some of the Bay Area’s iconic cultural institutions: the San Francisco Symphony, the San Francisco Opera, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, New Century Chamber Orchestra and the University of California. We owe a lot of the cultural richness of the area to the Gettys’ philanthropy.