The Nonprofit Center of the Berkshires, in partnership with The Berkshire Eagle, will present the 3rd Annual Berkshire Nonprofit Awards breakfast on Tuesday, May 19, from 8 to 10 a.m. at Berkshire Hills Country Club in Pittsfield. The awards recognize people who work tirelessly in the nonprofit sector to serve the Berkshire community. State Representative William “Smitty” Pignatelli will serve as emcee.


“The nonprofit sector employs a quarter of our workforce,” said  Liana Toscanini, founder of the Nonprofit Center. “It’s important to honor their commitment and accomplishments, especially in our community which has one of the highest number of nonprofits per capita in the Commonwealth.”


Nominations are being solicited from across the Berkshires in eight categories: Executive Leadership, Board Leadership, Super Staffer, Unsung Hero, Volunteer, Rising Star and Lifetime Achievement. A new category, the Samya Rose Stumo Youth Leadership Award, honors the memory of the Sheffield native who lost her life on Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in March of 2019. The 24-year-old was en route to Kenya for nonprofit work in global health development.  NPC board member and contemporary of Samya, Auric Enchill, was deeply affected by the tragedy and her commitment to nonprofit work and suggested naming the award in her honor.


20 honorees (three in each of 6 categories, one youth leadership and one lifetime achievement) will be selected by a committee of business and nonprofit leaders. The nomination forms are available on this page. The deadline for submissions is March 26.


The NPC is currently seeking sponsors for this celebratory event. To date, major support comes from The Berkshire Eagle with additional support from Berkshire Bank, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation, Feigenbaum Foundation, Greylock Federal Credit Union, Lee Bank, and The Triplex Cinema. For more information about sponsorship, click here.



  • Nominee must work or volunteer for a registered Berkshire County 501(c)(3).
  • Nominees must show evidence of the strength of their work across a broad range of criteria including: strategic thinking, thoughtful execution, support of the culture, growth and strength of the organization, supportive of the population the nonprofit serves, commitment to the community, embodies the mission and vision of the organization. Nominations should provide evidence of significant achievements at his/her organization.
  • A person can only be nominated in one category.
  • Only nominations for individuals will be accepted.




Click the title of the category below to access the corresponding nomination form. Deadline for submissions is March 26th.


  1. Executive Leadership Award
    This award honors a nonprofit staff leader (CEO, Executive Director or member of the Executive Team) whose strategic vision, passion, innovation, perseverance, and integrity has led to a strong record of extraordinary organizational results.
  2. Board Leadership Award
    Given to a current or former member of the nonprofit’s board of directors who demonstrates commitment to prudent use of all assets, provides oversight for activities that advance effectiveness and sustainability, ensures compliance with applicable laws and ethical practices, and who serves on committees or task forces and offers to take on special assignments.
  3. Super Staffer Award
    This award is given to nonprofit staff member whose work has had significant impact on an organization. Recognized by peers for exhibiting a can-do attitude, demonstrating a high level of commitment and responsibility, and going above and beyond the job description.
  4. Rising Star Award
    The Rising Star award honors a relative newcomer to the Berkshire Nonprofit sector who has demonstrated the potential of making a significant impact on the community. This individual may be young, new to the Berkshire nonprofit sector, or part of a new nonprofit launched in the last 5 years. This individual has demonstrated remarkable talents at an early stage in their tenure, achieving outstanding accomplishments and significant impact.
  5. Volunteer Award
    Awarded to an individual who has a record of activities that have made a long-lasting and meaningful difference in the lives of people or communities. This award honors the volunteer who has shown outstanding dedication to a nonprofit or multiple nonprofit organizations whose programs serve the Berkshire County community. Active volunteerism can be ongoing or linked to a single project or cause.
  6. Unsung Hero Award
    This award honors the contribution of a nonprofit staff or volunteer member in any area of an organization whose good work has not been publicly recognized in the Berkshire community.
  7. Lifetime Achievement Award
    This award honors an individual who has dedicated his or her life to being a leader and role model. His or her influence has made an enduring and profound difference in his/her community and the lives of those around him/her. Recipients of this award strive toward the highest level of personal and professional accomplishment, excel in their chosen field, devote time and energy to their community in a meaningful way, and forge paths of leadership for others to follow.
  8. Samya Rose Stumo Youth Leadership Award 
    This award acknowledges an individual aged 17-27 who has contributed meaningfully to the Berkshire Nonprofit sector either through volunteer or paid work.  This individual has demonstrated passion and dedication to one or more causes and/or organizations, made a difference in the lives of people in our community, and achieved outstanding accomplishments early in life.  Nominations should be accompanied by at least one letter of recommendation. Note: Awardee will receive a $250 mini-grant (provided by United Personnel) to use to further the mission (s) he or she cares most about.

Gold Sponsor


Silver Sponsor


Bronze Sponsors

2019 Honorees

Lifetime Achievement

Madeline Cantarella Culpo/Albany Berkshire Ballet


Board Leadership

Mike Goodwin/Louison House

Diane Pearlman/Berkshire Pulse

Julie Pellerin-Herrera/Pittsfield Education Foundation


Executive Leadership

William Conklin/Greenagers

Kristen van Ginhoven/WAM Theatre

Rich Weisenflue/Berkshire Family and Individual Resources (BFAIR)


Rising Star

Alisa Costa/Berkshire Bridges Working Cities

Shela Hidalgo/Berkshire Community College

Daniela Hurtado/Berkshire South Regional Community Center

Super Staffer

Tracy M. Beany/Louison House

Lorena Dus/Berkshire Immigrant Center

Beth Frederick/Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity


Unsung Hero

Cherri Cato Sanes/ExtraSpecialTeas, Inc.

Kathy Hynes/Got Spots Etc.

Kayla Quick/The Brien Center



Erica Cavanaugh/Sisters for Peace: REACH Program

Wendi Koch/Berkshire HorseWorks, Inc.

William Schaepe/Literacy Network of South Berkshire