The Central Iowa Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals recognized three philanthropy award winners on Friday at its annual luncheon. 

Outstanding Corporate Philanthropy Award – Nationwide and the Nationwide Foundation
Nationwide, the Nationwide Foundation and Nationwide associates have invested financial commitments of more than $16 million in the Central Iowa community in the last four years. The company prioritizes four areas in which it is looking to make a difference: emergency and basic needs, crisis stabilization, personal and family empowerment, and community enrichment.

Among the organizations that have benefited from their vision and support is Feeding America. A 2017 investment of $1.5 million by the Nationwide Foundation to one of Feeding America’s member organizations, the Food Bank of Iowa, had the power to double services provided to food-insecure Iowans in 55 counties. 

The Nationwide Foundation is also a founding member of the American Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program and has contributed $19.9 million to disaster relief since 2000. And since 2015, Nationwide associates in Des Moines have donated more than 7,800 units of blood through on-site blood drives and volunteered 72,000 hours with local nonprofits.

Since 2014, Nationwide leaders and associates have been actively engaged in the United Way of Central Iowa’s OpportUNITY program to help citizens who are struggling to gain self-sufficiency. The company made a $100,000 investment in the program in 2018, which was followed by an additional $100,000 gift from the Nationwide Foundation in 2019.

Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser Award – Susan Knapp
Susan Knapp, who attended Des Moines Area Community College and Drake University, is the retired marketing director for Knapp Properties and the current owner of Knapp Quarter Horse Farms in Van Meter. Among the many organizations she has contributed to are the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation, Planned Parenthood, the Chrysalis Foundation and the Young Women’s Resource Center. 

From 2013 to 2018, Knapp was a Young Women’s Resource Center development committee member, where she raised more than half a million dollars to create the Louise Rosenfield Noun Center, which the organization calls home today. In 2002 Knapp created a children’s book called “Bells Goes to the Fair.” Proceeds were donated to the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation to preserve Iowa’s historic fairgrounds, including the Susan Knapp Amphitheater that bears her name. With Planned Parenthood, Knapp created a fundraiser called “Gemstones & Precious Metals for Planned Parenthood” and co-chaired and provided the lead gift for the “Women are Watching” campaign in 2014. She is a past recipient of the Louise Rosenfield Noun Visionary Award and the Iowa Governor’s Volunteer Award. 

Spirit of Philanthropy Award – W.T. and Edna M. Dahl Trust
W.T. and Edna Dahl created Dahl’s Foods, which served Central Iowa communities for more than 80 years. Because of thoughtful foresight and estate planning more than 30 years ago, the Dahls’ impact will last even longer than the celebrated grocery business that also carried their names.

Through the W.T. and Edna M. Dahl Trust, the Dahls have extended the support they provided during their lifetimes to the Red Cross, Youth Homes of Mid America, Living History Farms and other charitable endeavors. Subsequent to the Dahls' passing, the trust has provided more than $10.3 million to more than 100 nonprofit organizations. The impact of the Dahl Trust is present at the Pappajohn Sculpture Park and Greenwood Park; in services provided to Iowans by such organizations as Eyerly Ball and the Des Moines Area Religious Council; and in the Des Moines Consistory Building and Scottish Rite Masonic Center, maintenance of which was endowed by the Dahl Trust. 

Today the trust is administered by Paul Tyler and Jerry Jones, who have been committed to representing the charitable aspirations of the Dahl family.