TF Cornerstone (TFC) hosted its first ever Game Changer Awards on Nov. 7, when they honored nine local nonprofits for the impactful work they do in the Long Island City community.
The intimate ceremony, organized by TFC’s new Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility Ebony Conely-Young, took place at the WeWork on 41-21 27th St.
“As a 19-year veteran for nonprofits as an executive director, I understand the work, the effort, the time that nonprofits put into this work, and it is so imperative,” Conely-Young told QNS. “Sometimes we as nonprofits — and I still sometimes consider myself that in some ways — are overlooked in the work that we do. I felt compelled to want to do this. It’s in my gut. It’s in my mission. It’s in my core.”
After a short performance by the Voice Charter School, host Seth Bazacas, the executive director of Renew Queens, introduced the winners of each category.
The categories ranged from best of youth and education, which was awarded to the Jacob Riis Settlement; best of advocacy and justice, awarded to the Fortune Society; and best of community building, awarded to the LIC Partnership.
TFC then presented the Floating Hospital with best of health and wellness and the 2019 Game Changer champion.
Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan attended the ceremony and helped present the awards. Nolan said she “wouldn’t have missed” the event, and praised Conely-Young for her work.
“I’m really happy to see a partnership between our corporate people and our community, our civic people and our leadership … because that’s what it’s supposed to be,” Nolan said.
“It’s humbling to remember how hard people work in our city, so when you take the time to also give back like this … it’s extra special,” she added. “And just remember, you are helping someone who is not here tonight, who can’t be here tonight, but your leadership, your commitment, your community effort, the sponsorships, the partnerships — those are the things that are helping the people who have no voice.”
The night was full of Long Island City pride by the honorees and attendees.
Conely-Young assured that this is only the pilot year, and that in the near future, the real estate company hopes to expand and “do some great things.”
Conely-Young also mentioned that the family-owned and operated real estate company pledged to understand the community better and find ways in which they can both work side by side.
“Part of that pledge was hiring me as the vice president of corporate social responsibility,” Conely-Young said. “And I pledged to my community to do the best that I absolutely can to help the bridging of both community and development, so that we all get along and we all live together in a way that’s pleasing for all.”
The full list of honorees is listed below:
- Best of Youth & Education: Jacob Riis Settlement
- Best of Environmental Sustainability: Hunter Point Park Conservancy
- Best of Community Building: LIC Partnership
- Best of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion: Urban Upbound
- Best of Health & Wellness: Floating Hospital
- Best of Tech & Workforce: Pursuit
- Best of Advocacy & Justice: The Fortune Society
- Best of Fundraising: Queens Council on the Arts
- Best of Arts & Humanities: Queensboro Dance Festival
- 2019 Game Changer CHAMPION: Floating Hospital