Friends of the College Honored by Association of Fundraising ProfessionalsDecember 5, 2011
Two people with strong ties to Tompkins Cortland Community College have been honored by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Finger Lakes Chapter. Arthur Kuckes was named Philanthropist of the Year and Larry Baum was named Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year at the chapter's National Philanthropy Day Luncheon last month. President Carl Haynes introduced Kuckes at the award ceremony; Dean of External Relations Bruce Ryan introduced Baum.
Kuckes donated $2 million to the College in 2008, the largest single gift in the history of the College. The money was used to establish the "Pathways" scholarship program, providing greater access to higher education for adults with limited means. Since the initial donation, Kuckes has given another $2 million to the program. In 2009 he was presented with the "Friend of the College" award in recognition of his extraordinary philanthropy. The list of organizations that Kuckes and his wife, Martha Wright, have supported is lengthy, and includes GIAC, Southside Community Center, Ithaca Youth Bureau, Community Arts Partnership, Community School of Music and Art, the History Center, Ithaca Public Education Initiative, Family Reading Partnership, Challenge Industries, Tompkins County Public Library, Tompkins Learning Partners, and the Food Bank of the Southern Tier.
Baum is a longtime board member of the Foundation, having served as chair since 2009. He co-chaired the Tompkins County Pacesetters committee during the Foundation's first-ever capital campaign in 2004. He also co-chaired the Tompkins County United Way 2010-11 campaign and is the current chair of the Cayuga Medical Center's board of directors. He is active in the community as a trustee of the Legacy Foundation, Finger Lakes Wine Center and past chair of the Air Service Board of the Tompkins Regional Airport. He has been honored as the Distinguished Citizen of the Year by the Baden Powell Boy Scouts of America, and three times won the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce Key Person of the Year award.
Kuckes and Baum were honored a luncheon held at Celebrations in Ithaca on November 18. Seneca Beverage Corporation was named the Corporate Philanthropist of the Year and Brigid Hubberman was recognized for Outstanding Professional Achievement in Non-Profit Leadership. Ithaca College President Thomas Rochon served as the event's keynote speaker.