Home Official News Releases Two Drake trustees honored at Philanthropy Day Luncheon

Two Drake trustees honored at Philanthropy Day Luncheon

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From left: Suku and Mary Radia, James and Ellen Hubbell and Maddy and David Maxwell gather at the luncheon.

Two members of the Drake University Board of Trustees were honored at the recent 24th annual Philanthropy Day Luncheon sponsored by the Central Iowa Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

James W. Hubbell III was named the 2009 Outstanding Individual Philanthropist and Suku Radia received the Spirit of Philanthropy Award at the luncheon at the

Downtown Marriott.

Hubbell, chairman of Hubbell Realty Co., has served on the Drake Board of Trustees for more than 20 years and chaired the board from 2006-09. He also served on the board of Iowa Health System and currently serves as a board member of the Des Moines Art Center, the Terrace Hill Commission and the Great Outdoors Fund, which he also chairs.

Hubbell’s outstanding contributions to Drake and Iowa Health System received special attention during the awards ceremony.

He was recognized for “helping the University renew its vigor and leadership position in Des Moines, the state of Iowa and nationally — including Drake’s academic standing, athletic programs and financial strength.”

In addition, Hubbell was honored for the role he played in the formation of a statewide alliance of hospitals that began with Iowa Methodist Medical Center and developed into the Iowa Health System.

When asked why philanthropy is important to him, Hubbell said, “I have both a responsibility to my fellow citizens as well as the opportunity to try to make our community better and stronger.

“This responsibility has always seemed apparent and intuitive to me, and the benefits accrue to the present generation and to our children as well. What a wonderful return on investment that makes.”

Radia, CEO and president of Bankers Trust Co., joined Drake’s Board of Trustees in 2008. He has a long history of community service and this year leads the annual fundraising campaign for United Way of Central Iowa.

During the awards ceremony, Radia was described as “a selfless and inspirational leader who brings new energy and new donors to every nonprofit organization he serves. His passion to help others motivates them to open both their hearts — and their checkbooks.”

Radia has chaired the Greater Des Moines Committee, Greater Des Moines Partnership, Better Business Bureau of Iowa and Greater Des Moines Soccer League. He also is past president of the Rotary Club of Des Moines and the Rotary Club West Des Moines, as well as half a dozen other organizations. In addition, he has played a key role in the opening of three United Way chapters in India.

His many honors include United Way’s Tocqueville Award and Iowa State University’s Distinguished Alumni Award.

In response to a question of why philanthropy is important to him, Radia said, “All of us have an obligation to leave the community a better place than we found it.”

Understanding how much of a difference a dollar can make at a nonprofit agency has helped Radia to become a highly successful fundraiser as well as a philanthropist. His secret?

“Very simple — you cannot be afraid of rejection,” he said. “Perseverance and a bit of luck are critically important.”