LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — In recognition of Rosalee Sinn’s lifelong dedication and many contributions to helping the world’s impoverished people, Heifer Foundation’s Trustees Emeriti have bestowed upon her the 2011 Dan West Fellow Award.
Throughout his life and as Heifer International’s founder, Dan West was committed to helping the poor, hungry and marginalized people. His vision continues to guide Heifer International and speaks to the most basic principle of charity — helping people help themselves.
Heifer Foundation — a separate nonprofit organization that grows and oversees the endowment for Heifer International — established the Dan West Fellow Award to recognize those who have given of themselves to help the less fortunate of the world. Each year, the Foundation’s Trustees Emeriti choose one outstanding leader as a Dan West Fellow.
“Rosalee is a wonderful fit for this award,” says Ardyth Neill, Heifer Foundation’s Vice President of Asset Management, CFO and interim CEO. “She’s devoted her life to improving others’ lives.”
Sinn began working for Heifer in 1965 in Massachusetts, where she still lives with her husband Paul, a retired United Church of Christ minister. Eight years after joining Heifer, she became regional director and directed the fundraising and education efforts for Heifer in the New England states and New York. In 1982-’84, she supervised the building of the Heifer Livestock and Learning Center at Overlook Farm in Rutland, Mass.
“Rosalee has an indomitable spirit and a sense of the deep values that animate Heifer International,” says Pierre Ferrari, CEO of Heifer International. “She has become a dear friend — as well as a frequent and constructive critic. I take that with thanks, as I know Rosalee has a deep affection for all things Heifer. There is no better possible recipient for this award.”
In 1993, Sinn considered retiring but instead was recruited by then-Executive Director Jo Luck to work as interim director of development at Heifer International’s headquarters in Little Rock. She helped create Heifer’s first direct-mail program, Read-to-Feed and was involved in the organization’s first professionally produced videos. Rosalee was chairperson of Heifer Hong Kong in its development stages, helping establish the current model that raises more than $4 million annually.
Sinn retired in 2004, but continues her relationship with Heifer as a volunteer, conducting educational programs about the guiding principles and programs plus speaking at universities and other institutions about goat husbandry and Heifer’s development model.
“I am honored to receive the Dan West Fellow Award. My years of work with Heifer and the opportunity to see Heifer’s partnerships in villages around the world, as well as to know Heifer’s exceptional donors and recipients is a special gift in my life,” Sinn says. “Frankly, I feel a bit overwhelmed to receive this special honor, yet not without a feeling of thanks for what it means.”