Volunteers Who Give

Each month we will tell you about a community volunteer that makes an impact in our community for an area non-profit organization.  We will tell you what they do, how they do it, and why they do it.

Rosemarie Bostelman,
Fort Wayne Children's Choir

When Rosemarie Bostelman first joined the board of the FWCC in 2007, she asked how the board managed itself. The first thing Rosemarie worked to institute was a formalized nomination and recruitment process for board members. In the past, the organization was passive about recruiting new board members. Under Rosemarie’s guidance, the organization now has a process to identify needs of the board, recruit appropriate board members, and once elected, to orient and train board members for effective service.

Rosemarie led the board through a 18-month process of changing and enhancing leadership for the Fort Wayne Children’s Choir. Rosemarie went above and beyond the call of duty by staffing the office and working with the administrative staff on functions, plus spending time examining most of the policies and practices of the organization and has brought organization to the FWCC during a time of change.

Under Rosemarie’s direction, the board created a strategic-planning sub-committee which took an intensive look at the organization, and then further worked to create a three-year strategic plan. Rosemarie joined the strategic planning sub-committee, and worked along side her fellow board members to create a strong, strategic plan to ensure growth of the organization. At Rosemarie’s strong suggestion, the board holds annual board retreats designed to renew and refresh together, and progress on Strategic Plan is evaluated at this annual retreat.

According to Denice Beights, Executive Director  of the Fort Wayne Children's Choir, "the FWCC is headed down a new path. The organization has been a part of the Fort Wayne community for 38 years. Artistically, the organization has become stronger over time with Rosemarie’s leadership, the organization administratively has clearer goals now and a framework in place to assess and measure success."

David Gutting, Blue Jacket, awarded 2010 Carl D. Rolfsen Stewardship Award
David Gutting, President of the Board of Directors of Blue Jacket, was awarded the Carl D. Rolfsen Stewardship Award at an event held Tuesday at the Memorial Coliseum attended by more than 200 local leaders. He was among nominees from 37 nonprofits recognized for their board leadership on behalf of local nonprofit organizations. With the turbulence in our national and local economies, the pressure on nonprofit organizations increases and the need for top leadership talent has never been more important. These volunteer leaders were honored for their excellence in leadership in this vital sector of Allen County.

According to the nomination from Blue Jacket, “David Gutting uniquely reflects the qualities of a servant leader for Blue Jacket, exhibiting unmatched stamina assisting in the creation of an innovative nonprofit with a difficult mission. During his seven years of board membership, three of those as Board Chair, he has been instrumental in transforming the board, with an eye for planning, board governance, and fiduciary stewardship. David’s skills in accounting and business management provided oversight to a young organization, identifying and posing solutions for major challenges.”

Blue Jacket was created to help reduce crime in Allen County by training and transitionally hiring adult ex-offenders. Blue Jacket provides ex-offenders with the tools and opportunities to be productive members of society. Blue Jacket helps those ex-offenders who want to earn their way to a second chance at life.

This is the fifth year that the Foellinger Foundation has hosted the event to spotlight the exemplary work of volunteers who devote themselves to local nonprofits. “The award program has gained national attention for recognizing nonprofit leaders who volunteer their time and talent to lead organizations that greatly enhance our quality of life in Allen County,” said Cheryl Taylor, Foellinger Foundation President. “We do this to showcase good people doing the right things and to encourage further excellence in nonprofit leadership. During difficult times, strong leadership becomes even more important. Leaders who demonstrate the will and the ability to take on the challenge of fulfilling these organizations’ missions and provide for their sustainability are prized assets for the Allen County community.”

The Rolfsen award brings with it a $10,000 grant to Blue Jacket for operating support, plus a $7,500 grant for board governance training.

Read more about the Rolfsen award at www.foellinger.org.