The Iowa Nonprofit Awards recognize exceptional practices, achievements, and impact of nonprofit organizations and professionals, philanthropic organizations, national service and volunteer programs, and local collaborations for their efforts to address community challenges.

2021 Iowa Nonprofit Award Winners

  • Home Opportunities Made Easy, Inc. (HOME, Inc.), Des Moines, Nonprofit Spotlight Award
  • Iowa Gleaning Network, statewide, Outstanding Volunteer or National Service Program Award
  • John “Odie” Oates, Cedar Rapids, Nonprofit Board Leadership Award
  • Trish Roberts, Carroll, St. Anthony Foundation, Nonprofit Staff Leadership Award
  • Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley, Waterloo, Outstanding Nonprofit Collaboration Award

The 2021 Iowa Nonprofit Awards ceremony can be viewed HERE.

It is strongly recommended that nominations first be prepared in a word processing document. Not only does this let the nominator collect, write, edit and check character counts but it also ensures that any disruptions (e.g. loss of internet connection) do not mean a loss of time and work. After all information is gathered, it can be copied and pasted into the electronic nomination form.  

Nominations are accepted in the seven categories listed below. Nominee must meet all criteria listed to be considered. Nominations for 2021 are now CLOSED.

Additional points will be awarded to Service Enterprise Certified organizations. Additional information about Service Enterprise can be found at: /SEI.

* Indicates awards that government entities are not eligible to receive. However, they may be nominated for Outstanding Volunteer or National Service Program (or Manager) Awards and may be included as a partner in an Outstanding Nonprofit Collaboration.

Nonprofit Spotlight Award *

  • Must have IRS 501c3 designation
  • Demonstrates responsiveness to needs in Iowa's communities
  • Identifies and responds to needs through advocacy or long-term strategies
  • Demonstrates commitment to needs in Iowa's communities through investment of resources, community dialogue and partnership
  • Demonstrates commitment to accountability and effective nonprofit and volunteer management

Nonprofit Board Leadership Award *

  • Current or former member of the nonprofit’s board of directors
  • Demonstrates commitment to ensuring prudent use of all assets, including facility, people, and good will
  • Provides oversight for activities that advance effectiveness and sustainability; makes decisions in the best interest of the organization
  • Ensures compliance with applicable laws and ethical practices, and adherence to stated purposes and activities that advance the mission
  • Serves on committees or task forces and offers to take on special assignments

Nonprofit Staff Leadership Award *

  • Current or former staff member of the nonprofit organization
  • Creates a culture that balances innovation and day-to-day productivity to carry out and implement activities and actions approved by the board
  • Demonstrates a proactive, plan-based approach to leadership; ensures all staff and volunteers contribute directly to achieving goals
  • Identifies and responds to needs addressed by the organization's mission

Philanthropic Impact Award *

  • Demonstrates commitment and dedication to improving the quality of life through timely, innovative and impactful grantmaking
  • Identifies opportunities to invest grants in organizations that ultimately lead to long-term impact and sustainability
  • Demonstrates commitment through responsible investment of resources and involvement in partnerships with the nonprofit sector

Outstanding Volunteer or National Service (AmeriCorps or AmeriCorps Seniors) Program Award

  • Effectively uses service as a strategy to address community needs or challenges
  • Has a record of making long-lasting positive and meaningful differences in the lives of people in the community, region, or state through its activities
  • Demonstrates excellence in volunteer management practices, (recruitment, training, supervision, support, retention and recognition)
  • Displays leadership in engaging volunteers in high-impact, meaningful service

Outstanding Volunteer or National Service (AmeriCorps or AmeriCorps Seniors) Manager Award

  • Served as volunteer administrator or National Service program director a minimum of three years (may be salaried staff member or non-salaried volunteer)
  • Demonstrates excellence in program and volunteer management and exhibits innovation in maximizing resources
  • Displays leadership in the volunteer or national service field; helps promote volunteer and/or national service in the community, region, or state

Outstanding Nonprofit Collaboration Award

  • Functions as a collaborative partnership, which may include nonprofits, government entities, for-profits, and others
  • Demonstrates increased effectiveness and efficiency of services provided, and/or such things as joint marketing or fundraising, reaching new clientele, or enhancing public advocacy