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Annual Awards Reception - In-Person Event

  • Tuesday, May 07, 2024
  • 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
  • Institute for Contemporary Art at VCU, 601 W. Broad Street, RVA 23220
  • 29


(depends on selected options)

Base fee:
  • For AFP Members and individuals who are not personally members of VAFRE but whose organization has one or more paid members, or who are guests of a VAFRE member, and who are planning to attend in-person.
  • For VAFRE members who are planning to attend in-person at the Virginia War Memorial.
  • For those nonmembers who wish to attend in-person
  • For VAFRE members who have purchased a Season Pass
  • For VAFRE Members who purchased a Virtual Season Pass but want to attend in person.


Join VAFRE on the evening of May 7th as we honor our 2024 Nina Abady and Rising Star Award winners during a reception at the Institute for Contemporary Art at VCU.

(For Sponsor or Group registrations, click here)

Our 2024 Honorees:

  • Nina Abady Honoree Kelly del Campo Merricks, CFRE, MBA (pictured below at left)
  • Rising Star Honoree Katy Latimer (pictured below at right)

    Kelly del Campo Merricks, CFRE, MBA, is the Vice President at Sheltering Arms Foundation. For more than 25 years, she has served the greater Richmond community by connecting donors’ passions to community needs. She spent the first years of her career with the Arthritis Foundation, American Red Cross, and the Central Virginia Foodbank (now FeedMore), followed by 11 years with Westminster Canterbury Richmond where she managed their foundation, public relations, and volunteer services departments.  In 2014, she joined Sheltering Arms Foundation where she helped reignite philanthropy and make Sheltering Arms Institute, a collaboration with VCU Health a reality. After exceeding the $50 million capital campaign, the Sheltering Arms Foundation team and their community of donors are creating the “Margin of Excellence” that makes Sheltering Arms Institute the number one rehabilitation hospital in Virginia and among the top in the nation (US News and World Report Best Hospitals 2023-2024)

    Kelly is a graduate of Washington and Lee University, holds an MBA from VCU, and is a member of Leadership Metro Richmond’s class of 2024.  She is married to her lifelong friend and partner, Jason. They have a 15-year-old daughter, a sophomore at James River High School and graduate of Richmond Montessori School where Kelly served on the board of trustees for 7 years, chairing the advancement committee and serving on the committee on trustees.  She is a past president of both AFP Central Virginia Chapter and Virginia Gift Planning Council and a member of VAFRE.

    Katy Latimer is the Development Director at Sportable, where she champions opportunities to make sports, recreation, and wellness accessible and inclusive for adults and children with physical disabilities. Before joining Sportable, she held development roles at Rx Partnership and Daily Planet Health Services. Katy earned her B.A. in Sociology from the University of Mary Washington in 2013 and is a proud graduate of the Emerging Nonprofit Leaders Program, an initiative of the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond. She currently serves on the VAFRE Board of Directors and is a volunteer with the Virginia Public Health Association. Born and raised in Richmond, she enjoys live music, camping, cooking, and quality time with her cat, Sushi.


    Join us as we welcome Elias Neujahr, MHA, MBA, President, VCU Children's Hospital. He joined Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU in 2017 with a focus on expanding and improving care for children and families in Virginia. Under his leadership, CHoR has been listed among the nation’s top children’s hospitals in U.S. News & World Report, signifying the outstanding quality, safety, research and other important components of providing the best care for kids.

    Neujahr was a key leader in solidifying plans for CHoR’s long-awaited dedicated full-service and comprehensive Children's Tower that opened in spring 2023. The tower is CHoR's home for inpatient, emergency care and Level 1 pediatric trauma care and completes an entire city block dedicated to caring for kids. The tower complements CHoR's mental health facility at Virginia Treatment Center, Transitional Care Unit at the Brook Road Pavilion, NICU on the main VCU Medical Center Campus and more than a dozen outpatient centers across Central and Northern Virginia. 

    In an effort to ensure that children can acquire critical medications, Mr. Neujahr was integral in CHoR being included among 11 of the country’s leading children’s hospitals as an inaugural member of the Children’s Hospital Coalition. The coalition aims to provide certainty in access to medicines and address supply chain issues that disproportionately impact children’s hospitals.

    A tireless advocate for children’s health, he also shares his passion and expertise as an active Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals board member. Neujahr holds master’s degrees in both health care and business administration from the University of Colorado. He has committed his 20+ year career to pediatric health care, with an extensive background in operations and leadership that includes previous roles at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio in Texas, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital and Physicians in Michigan, Women and Infants Hospital in Rhode Island and Colorado Children’s Hospital in Denver, Colorado.


    • 5:00 p.m. Registration Begins
    • 5:30 p.m. Program Begins
      • Presentation by Elias Neujahr, MHA, MBA, President, VCU Children's Hospital
      • Awards Presentation
    • 6:15 p.m. Reception
    • 7:00 p.m. Adjourn

    Cost to attend

    • $35 for Members (no additional fee for Season Pass holders, $20 for Virtual Season Pass holders)
    • $40 for Member Organizations
    • $45 for Nonmembers


    To ensure that VAFRE membership is accessible to, and truly reflective of, Richmond's diverse fundraising community, we are offering scholarships so that individuals may join VAFRE regardless of their financial ability or the financial ability of the nonprofits for which they work. If you would like to make a gift of any size to support scholarships for VAFRE memberships, please select the "Make a donation" button when you register for this event, and we will gratefully apply your donation to the Susan Early Scholarship Fund*.  

    MANY THanks to our Presenting Sponsor


    Contact VAFRE Administrator Mary Kidd at (804) 368-3398 or by e-mail to

    *This donation is not tax deductible.

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