Wright State graduate receives national nonprofit award

The Nonprofit Leadership Alliance recently presented Sarah Williams, ’04, with the prestigious Certified Nonprofit Professional (CNP) of the Year Award. The award presentation took place in Salt Lake City at the annual Alliance Management Institute, an educational conference geared toward students planning a career in the nonprofit sector.

“Receiving this award means a lot to me,” said Williams, who currently serves as the executive director at Hannah’s Treasure Chest in Centerville, Ohio. “I am very humbled and honored to have been selected. This award is for those that have supported me personally and professionally as well as my teams in the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Alumni Society at Wright State and at Hannah’s Treasure Chest.”

Hannah’s Treasure Chest provides toys, clothes, furniture, books, and other essential items to nearly 7,000 children each year. Their mission is accomplished through the hard work and dedication of over 60 core volunteers, one full-time, and four part-time staff members. Under Williams’ leadership, the organization has increased their in-kind donations and distribution from nearly $460,000 to $736,000.

Prior to joining Hannah’s Treasure Chest in 2011, Williams held positions at the Miami Valley Council Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of Western Ohio, Tom Geiger Guest House, and the Dayton Christian Center.

“I have always had a passion for the community I live in,” the Elyria, Ohio, native explained. “As I was growing up, my parents always instilled the importance of giving back and making things better than you found them. I love a great challenge and seeing people and communities grow to do more. It is hard work, but I really enjoy what I do.”

Williams has remained connected to her alma mater over the years. She recently served as president of Wright State’s Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Alumni Society and is a member of the university’s Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Community Council. She enjoys mentoring current students who are seeking a career path in the nonprofit sector and recently hired two Wright State graduates to join the team at Hannah’s Treasure Chest.

“Without the Urban Affairs program and the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Certificate—and a lot of hard work—I wouldn’t be where I am today,” said Williams. “Wright State is a very important part of my life and it will continue to be in the future. I encourage all alumni to stay connected with Wright State and to find some way to give back through either mentoring a student, hosting an intern, speaking to a class, or giving a financial gift.”