homepage logo


By Staff | Aug 25, 2017

A new awards ceremony aims to showcase the extraordinary and hardworking individuals in the Southwest Florida community who dedicate their time and talent within the nonprofit sector.

The Cape Coral Community Foundation recently launched the nomination process for the first-ever Excellence in Nonprofit Performance Yearly awards. The ENPYs will highlight excellence in nonprofit performance by recognizing the best executive directors, staff, board members, volunteers and more.

“They do so much to improve the quality of life of our residents and no one is really appreciating them on the public stage,” Michael Chatman, president of the Cape Coral Community Foundation, said.

The ENPYs aim to celebrate those individuals and nonprofits and the impact they have.

A panel of judges will select up to three finalists in the following categories:

* Nonprofit Organization of the Year (established more than three years ago)

* Nonprofit Rising Organization of the Year (established less than three years ago)

* Nonprofit Executive of the Year (chief executive officer, president or executive director)

* Nonprofit Board Leader of the Year (board member)

* Nonprofit Employee of the Year (paid staff member)

* Nonprofit Volunteer of the Year (individual who serves the organization/community)

* Nonprofit Business Partner of the Year (business that supports nonprofits and the community)

Chatman noted that there is no shortage of categories.

“We wanted to bring some fairness and equality to the process,” he said, pointing out the separate awards for new versus established organizations. “We wanted to give some appreciation to startups.”

The Organization of the Year and the Rising Organization of the Year will be awarded grants.

As for the individual awards, the foundation tried to hit as many areas as possible.

“The heart of everything comes down to appreciation,” Chatman said.

In addition to the categories, the Michel Doherty Community Impact Award and the Paul Sanborn Service Above Self Award will be handed out. They will go to two inspirational individuals.

“It’s community impact, not just Cape Coral but region-wide,” he said.

Chatman noted that Doherty pushed for the Cape Coral Hospital, among other projects.

“She is just a titan in Southwest Florida in terms of her heart and what’s she done,” he said.

Sanborn was the Cape historian, a longtime Rotarian and more. Chatman explained that the award will go to a person with his or her hands in the community – hanging with local youth, flipping burgers and more.

“It’s a humanitarian award,” Chatman said. “This is someone who selflessly puts the community above self in order to advance the community.”

To keep the process objective, the judges are from Florida but are not regional.

Nominations are welcome from across Southwest Florida.

“It is truly a Southwest Florida event,” Chatman said.

As of Thursday, approximately 30 forms had been received.

“We are receiving applications,” he said.

All nominations are due Tuesday, Sept. 12, by 10 a.m.

The finalists will be recognized in September at a pre-event engagement. The winners will be announced at the awards luncheon Oct. 18 at the Crowne Plaza Bell Tower in Fort Myers.

Chatman invited the community to submit nominations.

“They see first-hand the good work that all of those nonprofits and those who support nonprofits do,” he said. “This is the only once-a-year event where they are publicly appreciated this way.”

To submit a nomination, visit: www.capecoralcf.org/accepting-nominations/.

For information on the foundation, call 239-542-5594 or visit: www.capecoralcf.org/.

The Cape Coral Community Foundation is at 1405 S.E. 47th St., Unit 2.