2021 Awards

2021 Philanthropic & Nonprofit Impact Awards

Awardees have been selected! Please see more about this year's awards and honorees below and please enjoy our awards celebration and tribute. It's 26 minutes of fun that is sure to give you all the feels.



Champion for the Common Good – Recognizes a nonprofit organization whose work has resulted in significant progress on a policy issue impacting constituents or the community, at a systems level, in areas such as representation, equitable access to resources, and/or a state or federal advocacy issue addressed through either the State Legislature or Congress.

And this year’s awardee is… Public Land Water Access Association!


Upholding the Community Fabric: Safety Net Services – Recognizes a nonprofit organization whose direct work in the health and human services arena has significantly and positively impacted the community.

And this year’s awardee is… Missoula Food Bank and Community Center!


Upholding the Community Fabric: Vibrant Communities – Recognizes a nonprofit organization whose work focuses on community vibrancy and vitality, includes but is not limited to outdoor enjoyment, arts and culture, economic development, and Montana heritage.

And this year’s awardee is… Leadership Montana!



Outstanding Young Professional – The award for Outstanding Young Professional recognizes fundraisers under the age of 35 who display excellence in raising funds, inspiring donors, managing campaigns and dedication to the charitable sector.

And this year’s awardee is… Kiersten Iwai, Forward Montana!


Outstanding Fundraising Professional – The award for Outstanding Fundraising Professional honors an outstanding individual fundraising professional who works for a nonprofit, charitable organization. Nominees must have a minimum of 15 years of experience as a fundraiser.

And this year’s awardee is… Mary Rutherford, Montana Community Foundation!


Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser – The award for Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser honors an individual or family that demonstrates outstanding skills in coordinating and motivating groups of donors and volunteers for fundraising projects for the benefit of charitable institutions. The recipient must have demonstrated exceptional leadership skills in coordinating groups of donors and volunteers for major fundraising projects for more than one nonprofit organization.

And this year’s awardee is… Donald B. Gimbel, Retired!


 The Association of Fundraising Professionals, Montana Chapter, and Montana Nonprofit Association once again teamed up to honor philanthropic and nonprofit impact in the state of Montana this year.

In 2019 AFP and MNA collaborated for the first time to award philanthropic and nonprofit impact in Montana at MNA's Annual Conference in Billings.That year 11 awards were given to a well-deserving mix of individuals and nonprofit organizations.

Last year, the two associations honored the entire philanthropic and nonprofit sector with the gift of music. By collaborating with Red Ants Pants Music Festival, we presented Resounding Resolve – a celebration of Montana’s spirit, grit, and resolve which featured nine musical performances from well-known artists such as Suzy Bogguss.

This year we brought back the awards celebration, virtually, as part of MNA’s 2021 Virtual Conference. The virtual awards ceremony premiered on Thursday, September 30th at noon and can be watched and shared HERE.

About MNA

Montana Nonprofit Association is the recognized and respected voice for Montana’s nonprofit sector. As the statewide association dedicated solely to the strength and excellence of nonprofits in Montana, we represent more than 7,000 charitable nonprofit organizations operating in every corner of the state. Each year, we connect nonprofit professionals from across Montana and beyond at the MNA Conference to learn, network, and explore innovative and creative solutions that sustain their work. We are many missions, one voice.

About AFP

Association of Fundraising Professionals, Montana Chapter, is dedicated to promoting high ethical standards in the fundraising profession while also providing a network of support. Through educational opportunities, networking events and mentoring, we provide members an engaging experience to achieve great results in their fundraising careers. Each year we pay tribute to the great contributions that philanthropy has made to our lives, our communities, and our world through our Annual Awards.