Showcasing Community Leadership
From 2010 to 2015, Burlington Foundation was recognized for its work in the community, bringing people together, effectively managing and growing funds and creating positive change.
In 2010, Burlington Foundation hosted its first Masquerade Ball with 500 guests, raising operational funds for the Foundation and spreading awareness of the role of the Foundation in the community. That same year, to empower charities to make improvements to the environment, arts, and in the lives of children, the Foundation hosted three roundtable discussions sharing how to identify need and complete grant applications.
In 2010, Kevin Brady of Brady Financial Group, a generous donor to many local charities, was named Philanthropist of the Year. And in 2011, Doug Leggat, the driving force of Leggat Auto Group and local philanthropist, was honoured as Philanthropist of the Year.
The Foundation launched its inaugural Vital Signs Report in 2012. Produced through extensive third-party research, Vital Signs allows Burlington Foundation to focus its leadership efforts and granting program on the most critical areas of need, advise donors of where their support is needed most, and is a valued reference tool for the community.
Adding educational value, the Foundation began writing ‘Vital Community’ a regular column in the Burlington Post, launched the Professional Advisors in Philanthropy Council, and hosted a successful awareness fundraiser in support of post-secondary education scholarships. Engaging the business community also remained a primary objective, so in 2012, a Corporate Proud Supporter program was kicked-off with 15 businesses committed to supporting the Foundation’s mission-based work.
Another successful Masquerade Ball was hosted in 2013 honouring Philanthropists of the Year Murray and Diana Hogarth of Pioneer Energy, founding leaders of Burlington Foundation and generous donors to a variety of charities.
And in 2013 and 2014, the Foundation issued its second and third Vital Signs Reports, continuing to identify trends and community need. The report continued to guide the Foundation, donors and community leaders alike.
Addressing a major priority highlighted in Vital Signs—the mental health and wellness of our community members—in 2014, the Foundation launched the Mental Wellness Alliance with over 55 experts from both the private and public sector. Two major priorities emerged: broad-based education aimed to break down barriers, and the accessibility of critical programs and services. Through the leadership of Joseph Brant Hospital, a member of the Alliance, an expediated accessibility initiative, ‘Prioritizing Health through Acute Stabilization and Transition (PHAST)’ program, was launched in early 2018 and is now aiding thousands of community members in receiving the care they need, when they need it.
In 2014, the Foundation hosted another successful Masquerade Ball and honoured Philanthropists of the Year, Ralph and Susan Sgro, owners of multiple McDonald’s restaurants, supporters of the Foundation, and long-standing generous community givers.
The Foundation showcased exceptional community leadership, when, after a devastating flood that affected thousands of Burlington families in 2014, the Foundation formed the Burlington Flood Disaster Relief Committee at the request of the Mayor of Burlington. Launching a 100-day community campaign that raised close to $1 million and working with the Ontario government to raise a total of $2.7 million, the Disaster Relief Committee reviewed hundreds of insurance claims and provided $2.7 million in funding to help local families rebuild their lives and homes.
The Burlington Chamber of Commerce recognized the work of Burlington Foundation in 2014 with the Chamber’s first Business Excellence Award in not-for-profit leadership.