Nominations open for Sauer Charitable Leadership Award

Grace Poli
Grace Poli was the 2018 recipient of the Richard C. and Vina L. Sauer Charitable Leadership Award. Photo courtesy of the Community Foundation of Henderson County

Press release from the Community Foundation of Henderson County:

Community Foundation of Henderson County is currently accepting nominations for the Richard C. and Vina L. Sauer Charitable Leadership Award. The Sauer Award celebrates individuals who provide exceptional contributions and outstanding leadership through their personal philanthropic efforts in Henderson County.

Having made the difficult decision as a teenager to drop out of high school and help support his family, Richard Sauer and his wife Vina came to view every challenge as an opportunity to inspire positive change. In 1992, the couple made the single largest gift in the Community Foundation’s history with the intention of supporting various causes close to their hearts including assisting high school seniors in their pursuit of higher education.

Richard and Vina are long remembered for their modesty – routinely giving support to their community without the need or want for recognition. In 1994, the Foundation established the prestigious Sauer Award to honor the couple’s philanthropic legacy.

The deadline for nominations for the 2020 Sauer Award is Wednesday, July 1. Nominees for the award must be living residents of Henderson County. Committees, corporations, and organizations are not eligible. Additional information and the nomination form can be found at insights/philanthropists or by calling Senior Program Officer Lee Henderson-Hill at 828-697-6224.

Past Sauer Award recipients include Hall & Sonja Waddell, Grace Poli, Bernd & Toby Linder, Phyllis Rothrock, Ruth Birge, Thos. R. Shepherd, Mary Garrison, Dr. Stuart & Carola Cohn, Marian Lowry, Teddi Segal, Dr. Kathleen McGrady Family, Jeff Miller, Duane & Peggy McKibbin, Dot Marlow, Dr. Colin Thomas, Frank Byrd, Tom & Sue Fazio, Eleanora Meloun, Marcia Caserio, William “Bill” Stokes, Jr., William “Jamie” Jamison, Kermit Edney, Morris Kaplan, Kenneth Youngblood and Frank Ewbank. You can read more about each recipient online at

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