Prominent Charlottesville Philanthropist and Dedicated Health Leaders Honored at Bridges to Community's Annual Leadership Dinner

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William Wardle of Charlottesville, V.A., to receive Outstanding Vision and Commitment to Action Award and the inaugural Excellence in Global Health and Social Responsibility Award to be presented to a special group of dedicated doctors, Board members, and Nicaraguan leaders. Event to be held at Abigail Kirsch’s Tappan Hill Mansion in Tarrytown, NY on April 19; Event's proceeds will benefit vital community development projects in Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

William Wardle of Charlottesville, VA, will receive Bridges to Community's 2018 Outstanding Vision and Commitment to Action Award at the 2018 Leadership Dinner in Tarrytown, NY.

Bridges to Community Executive Director, Julia Hadlock, announced that William (Bill) Wardle of Charlottesville, V.A., Chair of the Board of Trustees and Executive Director of the Wardle Family Foundation since 1998, will receive their 2018 Outstanding Vision and Commitment to Action Award, an award given to individuals who have made a significant impact in helping people in the developing world. Bill has been a champion of Bridges since 2007 and is an advocate of Bridges’ health and education programming. Most recently, Bill’s enthusiasm for Bridges’ work reengaged Bridges with a former partner, Building Goodness Foundation, to build Bridges’ largest project to date – a 7,000 sq. ft. regional health clinic to address the health needs of over 18,000 rural Nicaraguans. Bill also co-founded the Initiative for Effective Nonprofits, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Piedmont Family YMCA and the United Way – Thomas Jefferson Area in Charlottesville, and is the Chair and Vice-President of Fripp Island Resort, Inc. in South Carolina.

Additionally, a special group of dedicated doctors, Board members, and Nicaraguan leaders will be presented with the inaugural Excellence in Global Health and Social Responsibility Award for their dedication and expertise to improving familial health, increasing access to adequate healthcare, and assessing and treating over 2,500 patients annually in the developing world. To be honored are Nancy Doon, Juliane Lehr, NRP, Frank Pierson, Dr. Susan Hadley, Dr. Warren Licht, Kenia Ramirez, Dr. Karen Johnston, Dr. Luca Lira Leon, Dr. Rick Rohrer, Dr. Michael Lahn, Frank Pepe, and Dr. Anthony Valdini.

At the Dinner, local philanthropists, community leaders, and luminaries will join Bridges to Community as they honor the achievements of Bill and the special group of leaders who have shaped Bridges to Community’s health programs. This very special event will be held at Abigail Kirsch’s Tappan Hill Mansion in Tarrytown, N.Y. Bridges to Community’s Leadership Dinner will offer entertainment by DJ Johnny G, a festive silent action, and delicious food for all attendees. Proceeds will fund Bridges’ vital community development programs in Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. Participants may purchase tickets at

“Every day we have the opportunity to inspire volunteers and work with amazing people of Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. We celebrate these collective efforts at the Leadership Dinner. Our annual celebration helps us raise the resources we need to continue to serve our mission and change lives. We appreciate all the sponsors and attendees who will make the event a success,” stated Executive Director Julia Hadlock. “The board and the staff are so pleased to honor Bill and the Clinic team. It is amazing what can be accomplished as a community of people, and with the resolve to work together towards a common goal. We are looking forward to taking the evening to celebrate that, and remember and reaffirm what Bridges to Community is all about,” said Bridges Board Chair, Stacy Brandom.

About Bridges to Community
Bridges to Community is an international not-for-profit organization whose two-part mission is to improve the lives of impoverished communities in developing countries through volunteer service trips, and to simultaneously educate and transform those volunteers to be more aware of the connections we all share and the ways we can all impact our lives for the better.

More than 700 volunteers, many from Westchester County, travel with Bridges to Community every year to rural villages in Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. Service learning is at the heart of the Bridges to Community mission and volunteer experience. We offer guided reflections, hold conversations with representatives from local families and organizations, and organize participatory activities to engage volunteers in the hard work of considering the full complexity of the world in which we live.

Through Bridges’ Housing Program, volunteers are supervised by masons and build sturdy cinderblock homes that are earthquake resistant and are designed to withstand years of heavy winds and rain. Bridges works to secure land titles for the owners so that families have a place to call their own for generations.

Through the housing projects, beneficiary families contribute to a community fund that is used to provide small business loans to community members, and fund projects after the organization leaves the community, among other things. Community leaders receive training from Bridges to Community to manage payments to the fund, to write business proposals, and more.

Bridges to Community’s Health Program strives to remove the obstacles that impoverished families face as they try to achieve a better future. Global health students and doctors work alongside Nicaraguan doctors to diagnose and treat 3,000 rural Nicaraguans per year, in addition to bringing medicine that is a scarcity in the autonomous region. Bridges also digs wells and builds water systems to deliver potable water, dramatically improving family living standards, reducing disease and child mortality, freeing girls’ and women’s time, as well as improving school attendance. Bridges designs and builds hygienic latrines to improve sanitation and install high-efficiency indoor stoves to reduce illnesses. Bridges is currently partnering with Building Goodness Foundation to build a 7,000 square foot regional health clinic in the community of Hormiguero, Siuna to address the health needs of over 18,000 rural Nicaraguans.

Bridges’ Education Program works to ensure that there will be educated leaders, doctors, engineers and skilled workers in the next generation, through scholarships, internships, and youth leadership. Through the scholarship program, Bridges ensures that the next generation receives the education they deserve. Bridges also facilitates Youth Leadership Workshops, teaching children computer and leadership skills, and also organizes Vocational Workshops for adults.

Thank You to Our Sponsors*
President’s Circle

  • Lisa Kunstadter & Nicholas A. Stephens

Giver of Dignity

  • Dianne and Charles Ramsey
  • The Rollins Family
  • Lois and Martin Whitman


  • Patricia and James Allen
  • Carla and Richard Berry
  • Nanette Bourne and John Delfs
  • Stacy and David Brandom
  • Chubb
  • Sandra and Kevin Delbridge
  • Nancy Doon
  • Frances and David Harris
  • Dr. Karen Johnston
  • Arikha Moses and Gregory Steinmetz
  • Michael O’Reilly
  • Christine and Scott Roper
  • Linnet Tse and John Forsyth
  • VHB

*as of 4-4-18

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Jeanine Racioppo
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