Henry A Rosso Award for Philanthropy


Henry Rosso’s contribution to ethical fundraising in New Zealand, America and other parts of the world has long been recognised. For over five decades he advanced the work and lives of professional fundraisers.

Rosso is one of the most beloved and respected masters in the fundraising field; recognised as the person who has most shaped present fundraising practice and theory. His teaching and efforts were instrumental in founding The Fund Raising School, a programme at the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, USA.

In 1985, he made one of several teaching visits to New Zealand, and along with James Mutch (through Zealandia Associates) ran a series of fundraising workshops. The funds left over from those workshops was held to benefit fundraising in New Zealand. That sum eventually doubled and the Henry A Rosso Award were subsequently established.

Preamble and Criteria

Then FINZ Council has resolved that the Hank Rosso Award should be granted solely:

“For engaging in significantly valuable activity over and above one’s normal activities and this has created long-term beneficial effects upon philanthropy and/or the fundraising profession.”

Eleven awards have been made since the Award began in 1992 and there is no obligation to make an award every year if no suitable candidate has emerged, nor should awards be limited to one in any one year if more than one should be made. Persons visiting from overseas can be given the award as, when and in what numbers are considered appropriate.

A Citation Letter stating simply and concisely why the Award has been conferred accompanies each award and is read aloud at its presentation.

Unlike other awards, this is not open to general application and is on the exclusive recommendation of the FINZ Fellows to Council.

Honorary FINZ Membership for Awardees

The FINZ Constitution reads:

4.2 Membership categories are as follows:

(e) Honorary Membership may be conferred upon a person, not necessarily a fundraiser, who because of distinguished, generous or otherwise meritorious services to the fundraising profession deserves to be honoured by the Institute. Honorary Members hold no voting rights and are not be eligible to hold office.

5.6 Honorary Membership may be conferred by the Council at its sole discretion on the recommendation of not less than three (3) voting Members which shall contain such details as shall be necessary to support it.

In 2010, National Council resolved that this Award should also carry with it an Honorary Membership of FINZ for future Awardees. The Hon Peter Dunne was thus made a FINZ Honorary Member.

Application Process

FINZ members interested in proposing a person for this Award are invited to do so by the last Thursday in February of each year to the National office who will prepare the necessary information and forward it to the FINZ Fellows for recommendation to the National Council.

Henry A Rosso Award for Philanthropy - Roll of Honour

2014: James T Mutch

2010:  Hon Peter Dunne

2001:  Sir John Todd

2001:  Sir Roy McKenzie

2000:  Wayne McKenzie

1993:  John Dear


2012: Frank Claridge

2001:  Sir Stephen Tindall

2001:  John Sutherland

2000:  Dame Rosemary Horton

1996:  JB Munro

1992:  Erica Brash



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