It's time to apply for the 2013 Alford-Axelson Awards!

It's time to apply for the 2013 Alford-Axelson Awards!

The new year is flying by, so here's your friendly reminder: February 1 is the deadline to apply for our Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence. You won't want this opportunity to slip away--this year we'll present awards of $7,500 each to two of the "best of the best" nonprofits in Chicago.

The application process is rigorous, but past winners have said that's part of what makes the process worthwhile.

Modesto Tico Valle is CEO of Center on Halsted (2012 winner). He explains that "whether we won or not, it was good to pause and reflect, and audit our work internally. Organizations should do that on a regular basis." And Erin Ryan, director of Lincoln Park Community Shelter (2011 winner), said the application process "made us think hard, and examine our processes. It's easy for a small organization to assume it is 'too small,' but the application process dispels that myth."

The awards can fund improvements that support the work of the organization, but they also send a valuable message to donors and funders that the nonprofit is efficient and well-managed.

The Axelson Center will be accepting applications through February 1 from 501(c)3 organizations whose primary mission benefits Chicago and/or its surrounding communities. We'll distribute one award to an organization with an annual budget of less than $3 million, and another to a nonprofit with an annual budget exceeding $3 million. We'll recognize the winners at our annual Symposium in Chicago on June 4, 2013. All finalists are eligible to attend the entire conference at no cost!

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