Meet Broward's Nonprofit Hidden Heroes

December 16, 2020
Community Foundation of Broward Hidden Heroes Award winners: Patricia Ryan, Natash McFarquhan, Timothy Curtin, Belinda Paulicin, Tammy Holder, Tina Cortez, Sandra Powell, Rebecca Gould, Elise Samet, Samantha Kelly, Xenia McFarling, and Alex Nesar.
The Community Foundation of Broward is proud to honor 12 representatives of dedicated nonprofits who have gone above and beyond during the pandemic. Our inaugural Hidden Heroes Awards shines a light on 12 outstanding examples of bold impact by individuals who make life better in our community. Our honorees include:

Tina Cortez

Sawgrass Nature Center & Wildlife Hospital

Honored for helping sustain and grow animal treatment and release efforts during the pandemic, including taking animals home to give them 24/7 care.

Click here to learn more about how Tina helps our community.

Timothy G. Curtin

Memorial Healthcare System

Honored for creating online counseling and support service alternatives to in-person visits during the pandemic as well as helping coordinate food deliveries and laptop computer donations.

Click here to learn more about how Timothy helps our community.

Rebecca Gould

Museum of Discovery And Science

Honored for developing more online STEM programming, including entertaining and educational videos, to keep kids learning from home during the pandemic.

Click here to learn more about how Rebecca helps our community.

Tammy Holder

Broward Performing Arts Foundation

Honored for creating fun and engaging online programming, including sing-alongs, to keep people connected to the arts during the coronavirus crisis.

Click here to learn more about how Tammy helps our community.

Samantha Kelly

Lighthouse of Broward County

Honored for producing new online services for the blind and helping to create a new mental health unit during the pandemic.

Click here to learn more about how Samantha helps our community.

Xenia McFarling


Honored for helping LifeNet4Families serve 250 meals a day and provide showers, clothing and other essentials for those in need during the coronavirus crisis.

Click here to learn more about how Xenia helps our community.

Natasha McFarquhar

Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies

Honored for her work for the emergency basic needs program, which helps struggling families get financial assistance during the economic crisis.

Click here to learn more about how Natasha helps our community.

Alex Nesar

Habitat for Humanity

Honored for helping hardworking families move into affordable, safe homes in the midst of pandemic shutdowns.

Click here to learn more about how Alex helps our community.

Belinda Paulicin

Gilda's Club South Florida

Honored for helping expand Gilda’s Club South Florida’s cancer patient support services during the pandemic.

Click here to learn more about how Belinda helps our community.

Sandra Powell

Broward Health

Honored for helping acquire three different testing platforms that have enabled Broward Health to rapidly identify patients with the coronavirus.

Click here to learn more about how Sandra helps our community.

Patricia Ryan

Broward Education Foundation

Honored for leading marketing and public relations efforts, including modifying events to be safe for the pandemic, to champion more support for Broward students and teachers.

Click here to learn more about how Patricia helps our community.

Elise Samet

Canine Assisted Therapy

Honored for helping to provide pet therapy and other animal-assisted activities for isolated seniors, pediatric cancer patients and others in need of care during the pandemic.

Click here to learn more about how Elise helps our community.

“These Hidden Heroes are changing lives and providing lifelines for so many people who need it,” said James Donnelly, the Community Foundation of Broward’s Board Chairman. “We were excited to seek them out and honor all that they do for our community.”

Click here to see the YouTube broadcast featuring our 12 new Hidden Heroes Award winners, which shows how they were surprised with capes, medals and prizes.

Learn More

To contact the Community Foundation of Broward, call 954-761-9503 or email

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