Children First CEO Philip Tavill

Children First CEO Philip Tavill is proud of the two “Be More” awards the organization won. He has been with the organization for 23 years.

Children First was honored to be recognized as the 2019 Nonprofit of the Year at the 14th annual WEDU Be More Awards.

As recipient of the “Be More Unstoppable” Award, Children First was chosen from a field of the Tampa Bay area’s most esteemed organizations. WEDU notes that the award is the most coveted and is determined through extensive research.

The winner was selected by an independent judging committee and given to the organization that, through a superior level of service, helps their constituency Be More. The criteria to receive this award consists of overall organizational excellence and fulfillment of WEDU’s Four Commitments to the Community: service to the organization’s constituency, level of community impact, financial viability, and embodiment of overall community goodwill.

Children First received a second accolade, the “Be More Knowledgeable” Award, recognizing the longtime Nurturing Dads Program. The award is for the organization that, through a specific project, offers guidance, knowledge, and emotional or physical support aimed at improving specific aspects of community life.

This award comes during a time of great milestones for the Nurturing Dads Program. In its 20th year, with over 200 classes and over 2,000 dad graduates, and completely free and open to the public, this program plays a critical role for children and families by creating a nurturing and supporting community of fathers.

Children First CEO Philip Tavill said, “Children First embodies its mission in serving our children and families and exemplifies community goodwill. Today, and every day, we live the mission by providing opportunities to help families create a better future. We have 550 beautiful little children who depend on us to nurture their minds and bodies.

“This award from WEDU, recognizing Children First as a model in our community, is an honor and a privilege. We are deeply grateful for the dedication, passion, and grit that our frontline staff bring to this critical work. We are so thankful for our Policy Council and Board of Directors, our Management Team, our dedicated volunteers, our community of supporters,and all of the behind the scenes heroes who keep our mission at the forefront. Thank you for helping Children First Be More everyday.”

About the awardThe “Be More Unstoppable” Nonprofit Organization of the Year is awarded every year, but this is the first time Children First won this award. Children First was the only organization from Sarasota County to be nominated in the category.

In previous years, Children’s First won WEDU Be More Awards in different categories: 2011 – “Be More Encouraged” Judges’ Choice Award; 2017 – “Be More Informed” Nielsen Marketing Campaign Award.


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