Philanthropy Awards and Annual Report to the Community Luncheon

On September 21, 2023 we celebrated philanthropy and the work the Community Foundation is doing on behalf of our region. We also honored Philanthropy Award recipients H. Todd Bullard, Drs. Krishan and Jaimala Thanik and Donald S. Hall (Joe U. Posner Founders Award).

Join us in congratulating the recipients of our Philanthropy Awards! Year in and year out, each recipient contributes to the promise of the greater Rochester region. The Community Foundation recognizes the many hours and consistent financial support these generous individuals and families share with countless nonprofit organizations dedicated to the improvement of our villages, towns, cities, and counties.

If not for this award, many of our honorees would remain behind the scenes, invisibly savoring the good works they have started, built on, or completed. We thank them for going public with their generosity in order to inspire others.

Here are the people and organizations that have been recognized with Philanthropy Awards by the Community Foundation since 1991. Those who have received the Joe U. Posner Founders Award, named for our founding chair, are marked with a plus symbol (+). Before 2001, this honor was simply the Founders Award.

2023: H. Todd Bullard, Donald S. Hall+, and Drs. Krishan and Jaimala Thanik

2022: Jonathan Foster; Emerson Fullwood; Dr. Dawn Lipson; and Judy von Bucher+

2021: Hanif Abdul-Wahid; Mary Anne Palermo; and Tom Riley and Barbara Kelley+

2020: José Coronas+; Nancy Robbins*; and Mary-Frances Winters

2019: Laura “Jinny” Loomis and Norman Loomis, MD; Harold Samloff; and Clayton H. Osborne+

2018: Bud* and Peggy* Frame family; Randy and Marion Henderson; and Kathy Nixon+

2017: Mike Buckley+; Anne Morris Farnham and Sherman Farnham Jr.; Mimi Hwang; and Chuck Lundeen* and John Williams
Special Recognition: Irene Weinberg, one of the Foundations’ first donors, and Rochester Women’s Giving Circle for its 10th year and surpassing $1 million in grantmaking

2016: Mary F. Fisher* and Deborah Lattime+; Dr. Sidney and Barbara Sobel; and Dilip Vellodi

2015: Leo and Charlotte Landhuis; Pin-Seng and Shirley Tschang; and Nathan “Nick” Robfogel+
Special Recognition: Bob Silver* and 20 years of leading Community Sponsors annual campaign

2014: Tom Argust+; Dr. Matthew Augustine; Linda Wells Davey*; and Robert Sykes* and family
Special Recognition: Feinbloom Supporting Foundation 25-year partnership.

2013: Dr. Walter Cooper+; the family of Robert* and Jane* Stevens; and Eric Zeller 
Special Recognition: Muriel H. Marshall Fund 15-year partnership

2012: Ronald Fielding; Janet Buchanan Smith*; and Margaret Sánchez+
Special Recognition: Community Foundation Founders and Longest-Serving Volunteers for An Evening Out At Home, Diana Lauria and Esel Rasor*

2011: Edward P. “Ted” Curtis Jr.*; the family of Lou and Betty* Iacona; Ruth I. Morton; and Ruth H. Scott+

2010: Mark and Kathy Cleary; Mark* and Bobbie* (Barbara) Hargrave Jr.; TC Lewis+*; and Nannette Nocon 

2009: Bruce B. Bates+*; Suzanne Gouvernet*; Adrienne* and Bertha Simpkins; and Justin L. Vigdor

2008: Joe Brown*; Dr. Marvin and Nancy* Yanes Hoffman; Robert D. “Bob” Hursh+*; and Frank* and Norma* Riedman 

2007: Vee* and George* Angle; Tom and Barbara Clark; Paul Rubery, Esq.+; and V.J. Stanley*

2006: Catherine Carlson*/Dorris and Chester Carlson Foundation; Ray and Erika Hutch; and Harris “Bud” Rusitzky+

2005: Harry* and Nancy Beilfuss; Robert W. “Bob” Kessler, Esq.+; and John M. “Dutch” Summers*

2004: George and Mary* Bauer; Marjorie Brenneman*; Jerome L. Huff*; and Richard A. Schwartz+

2003: Armored Motor Service of Rochester; Jacqueline P. Cady*; Alfred L. Davis*; C. Benn* and Sally Forsyth+; and Halcyon Hill Foundation 

2002: Joanna Card*; ESL Federal Credit Union; James and Janis Gleason and the Gleason Foundation; Elliott H. Press*; and Janet Welch+

2001: Ames-Amzalak Memorial Trust; Ione “Grandma” Collins*; B. Thomas Golisano; and Robert C. Silver+*
Special Recognition: Horses on Parade Project of High Falls Brewing Company

2000: Davenport-Hatch Foundation;Lance Drummond; Greece Rotary Club; Cricket Luellen*; and Linda Weinstein+

1999: Joseph* and Nancy Briggs+; Caldwell Manufacturing; Princeton Club of Rochester; and Robert Schmidhammer

1998: Arunas Chesonis; Ronald Fielding; James Littwitz+*; Richard Palermo*; and The Rochester Garden Club

1997: The Brush Family+;Hattie Harris*; Rosa Wims; Louis S. & Molly Wolk Foundation; and Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church 

1996: Frontier Corporation; Junior League of Rochester; Joe U. Posner+*; and Robert Strasenburgh* 

1995: Brighton Twelve Corners Middle School 8th Grade Community Service Program; Diane Doniger; Ruby Lockhart; Merrill Lynch and Co., Bruce Taub – Resident Vice President; and I.C. Shah+*

1994: Dr. Donald Eldredge*; Harold* and Joan Feinbloom+; Rochester Gas & Electric Corporation; and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church  

1993: Nicholas Ferreri; Philip* and Dolores* Neivert; Wegmans Food Markets, Inc.; and Wyman-Potter Foundation

1992: Borders Book Shop; Eastman Kodak Company; Elliot Landsman*; and the Marie C. and Joseph C. Wilson Foundation

1991: Richard F. Brush*


The Ames-Amzalak Fund at the Community Foundation was established in 1984 to honor the memory of Henry Ames and his brothers, Semon and Daniel Amzalak. These three young immigrants from the British territory of Gibraltar came to Rochester and prospered as owners of Mally Co., a women’s dress shop at East Avenue and Main Street, and other businesses. They established a private foundation, which in turn created the fund at the Community Foundation. 

The Ames-Amzalak Award for Nonprofit Excellence, now given every other year, recognizes an innovative and effective nonprofit organization that is a true community partner.

2023: PUSH Physical Theatre
2020: Teen Empowerment
2018: St. Joseph’s Neighborhood Center
2016: YWCA of Rochester & Monroe County
2014: United Way of Greater Rochester
2012: Lifespan of Greater Rochester
2010: Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning
2009: Foodlink
2008: Arts & Cultural Council of Greater Rochester
2007: Ibero-American Action League
2006: Children’s Institute
2003: Causewave Community Partners (formerly the Advertising Council of Rochester, Inc.)
2000: Hope Hall
1998: Finger Lakes Visiting Nurse Service/Ontario-Yates Hospice

H. Todd Bullard, Esq.

Todd Bullard

As a teenager, Todd was fascinated by the televised Watergate hearings and presidential impeachment process against Richard Nixon and the elected leaders intent on adhering to our democratic ideals. That helped convince him to become an attorney — and later a Monroe County legislator — to serve his community.

That service also included offering his expertise on boards. Todd joined the Community Foundation board in 1995, and looking back says that is when he learned how to be an effective board member and fully appreciate the positive benefits and impact of philanthropy. He and his wife, Darnella, turned to the Foundation in 2003 to establish the Leah Lillian Louise Bullard Memorial Fund, named for a daughter who passed away as an infant.

Making connections is another way that Todd contributes to the community. A little more than 10 years ago, he encouraged his client — Rural Metro Ambulance — to support the African American Giving Initiative’s effort to publish the State of Black Rochester book in 2013. The 10-year update of that book’s findings will be released in a multimedia format.

Drs. Krishan and Jaimala Thanik

For Krishan and Jaimala, giving back was what they did every day in their medical practices — he as a gastroenterologist and she as an anesthesiologist. They worked long days — 12 to 14 hours — to ensure that their patients got the best possible care.

But Jaimala observed how often patients who experienced pain were told there was nothing else that could be done. She decided to learn more about the country’s four pain management clinics by spending several months away from home to see for herself how those sites operated and understand best practices. Once back in Rochester, Jaimala began offering pain evaluation and treatment to patients and later helped establish the area’s first pain management clinic and convince health insurance companies to cover the related procedures.

Throughout their careers, the Thaniks were committed to supporting the hospitals where they worked and helping the greater community through donations. They also were instrumental in the creation of the India Community Center and financially backing the effort to open this gathering space for local individuals and families from India.

Their relationship with the Community Foundation began in 1996, beginning with contributions to the annual campaign. They later created three different funds to support their personal charitable giving and the community and its residents in the future. Krishan joined the Foundation’s board of directors in 2015 and served on several committees through 2021.

Donald S. Hall, Joe U. Posner Founders Award Recipent

Don can certainly say he had a stellar career under the stars — but indoors and at planetariums. He even had the unique opportunity to train NASA astronauts to recognize 54 specific stars that could be guides to keep the spacecraft oriented in case navigation equipment failed.

Don has many quirky things he’s passionate about — from hamburgers, zinc grave markers, and architecture to Tiffany glass, the mansions along East Avenue, and organs to name a few.

Through extensive research, this Ohio native transformed his fascination with these topics into 19 talks that he’s given hundreds of times locally and across the country. He deposited speaking fees from each presentation, along with contributions from investments and sales of his various collections, into the Donald S. Hall Fund at the Community Foundation. One day, proceeds from his estate will be the final gift to the fund, which will carry on his legacy and love for history, historic buildings and artifacts.

Don has been asked many times what he would have been if he hadn’t been in the planetarium field. A philanthropist, he always replied. “That was a joke at the time, but now I am one,” he said.