2017 Scholarship Benefit Honorees
Philanthropic Impact Award
About the Stavros Niarchos Foundation
The Stavros Niarchos Foundation (www.SNF.org) is one of the world’s leading private international philanthropic organizations, making grants in the areas of arts and culture, education, health and sports, and social welfare. The Foundation funds organizations and projects that are expected to achieve a broad, lasting and positive impact for society at large, focusing on vulnerable groups such as children and the elderly, and also exhibit strong leadership and sound management. The Foundation also seeks actively to support projects that facilitate the formation of public-private partnerships as an effective means for serving public welfare. In 2012, the Foundation, in addition to its standard grant-making activities, embarked on three major grant initiatives totaling $378mil (€300 mil) aiming to provide relief support against the severe effects of the deepening socioeconomic crisis in Greece, and to help address the critical issue of youth unemployment. Since 1996, the SNF has made grant commitments of $1.9 billion / €1.6 billion, through 3,719 grants to nonprofit organizations in 111 nations around the world. 2016 marked the twentieth year of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation’s global philanthropic activity.
The Foundation’s largest single gift is the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC), in Athens. The project's total budget of $867mil (€630mil) includes two grants of $6 mil (€5mil) each to the National Library of Greece and the Greek National Opera respectively, aiming to support the organizations’ transition to their new facilities. The project, designed by the architectural firm Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW), includes the new facilities of the National Library of Greece, and of the Greek National Opera, as well as the Stavros Niarchos Park. The SNFCC is a testament and a commitment to the country’s future. It is also an engine of short- to mid-term economic stimulus.
Educator of the Year Award
Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis
Since 2008, President Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D., has served as President of Naugatuck Valley Community College. Under her guidance, student retention has steadily risen, enrollment has increased, graduation awards have grown, and a thriving expanded campus in Danbury was developed. Last year, NVCC was named one of the top 25 community colleges nationwide in advancing opportunities for low-income students. Prior to NVCC, Dr. De Filippis served as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Eugenio Maria de Hostos Community College of the City University of New York (CUNY). She holds a Ph.D. in Spanish language and a M. Phil. in Spanish literature from the Graduate School and University Center of CUNY, an M.A. in Spanish literature, a B.A. in Spanish and English literatures from Queens College, CUNY, and an Honorary Doctorate in Humanities from the University of Santo Domingo (UASD) in recognition of her contribution to Dominican, Caribbean, and Dominican Diaspora literature. She serves on the Board of Directors and as the Chair of the Governance Committee for the United Way of Greater Waterbury, the Board of Directors for the Waterbury Regional Chamber, the Connecticut Technical High School System Board, Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty’s STEM Education Advisory Board, the advisory board of the Dominican Studies Institute at the City College, CUNY, and on the Board of the Dominican Studies Association. A regular panelist at the Higher Education Resource Services (HERS) Wellesley Conference, she provides leadership and career advice to approximately sixty women each spring.