CAIN Celebrates 2015 Pillar Award

CAIN shines at the Smart Business Medical Mutual 2015 Pillar Awards for Community Service at the Duke Energy Convention Center in January.

Northsider Hilda Faulkner introducing MiMi as a pillar of our community.

MiMi Chamberlin Honored as Nonprofit Director of the Year

Northsider Hilda Faulkner introducing MiMi as a pillar of our community.

Northsider Hilda Faulkner introducing MiMi as a pillar of our community. Photo: CAIN.

The Medical Mutual Pillar Award for Community Service recognizes companies, business leaders and nonprofit executives for their commitment to strengthening the bond between the for-profit and nonprofit worlds. The annual event also provides grants to nonprofit organizations. Named a Nonprofit Executive Director of the Year, MiMi was in great company. The other honorees were Santa Ono, University of Cincinnati; Arlene Nolan, Drop Inn Center; and Darlene Kamine, Community Learning Institute. The award is accompanied by a grant to continue CAIN’s great work in Northside.

CAIN Board member Steve Depoe summarized the significance of the award: “What a great award of recognition for MiMi Chamberlin for many years of peerless stewardship and leadership of our organization. This award is also a reflection of CAIN as a top-flight non-profit organization in the Cincinnati area—a high achievement, given the many wonderful philanthropic enterprises in this part of the world.”

Chamberlin (6th from top right) with CAIN staff, volunteers, and donors. Photo: CAIN.

Chamberlin (6th from top right) with CAIN staff, volunteers, and donors. Photo: CAIN.

Two tables of CAIN staff, board members, and other supporters cheered MiMi when her name was announced. Rev. Erwin Goedicke, of North Presbyterian Church, pre-recorded a video to tell MiMi’s and CAIN’s story to the invited guests and sponsors. CAIN’s Ministry Assistant and Northside resident, Hilda Faulkner, introduced MiMi to the stage and gave her the award. MiMi accepted graciously, thanking many people with whom she shares the recognition.



Remarks from Mimi:

“Thank you Northside residents for all your support and giving me the opportunity to have a job that is a vocation and fills me with passion and purpose. This award truly belongs to all of CAIN.  It is my privilege to work every day with some of the most caring, generous, faith-filled and inspirational people on the planet.  I especially thank Cathy Graham, my co-worker and friend since high school days. I thank my children, their Dad and my parents and friends and church family. And most of all I thank God who I know best as Jesus for holding me tight and never letting go. I accept this recognition as a challenge to each of us to continue to work to create a better life for those who are struggling.  It is wrong that in our prosperous and wealthy city and country, that so many of our brothers and sisters still lack basic food, shelter and economic and educational opportunity. As we celebrate all of our compassionate efforts tonight, let us recommit to making our world a better and more just one for all.”

The nominating criteria focused on MiMi’s leadership and her impact on the organization and all those it touches. MiMi has grown the capacity of CAIN to serve 450 households a month today, compared to 70 households when she started in 1993. The budget has increased ten-fold. Areas of accomplishment include CAIN’s being a local pioneer in tracking pantry data electronically, starting a choice pantry focusing on healthy food and fresh produce, collaborating with the Northside Farmers Market to increase food access, emphasizing hospitality as a core part of its ministry, and being guest-centered.

CAIN assists 45223 households who are low-income and under-resourced with food and other necessities, meals, and shelter – offered as tangible expressions of God’s love. CAIN extends compassionate hospitality through its Rainbow Choice Food Pantry, Phil’s Place free community weekly dinner, and Grace Place temporary transitional housing for women and children.


CAIN – Churches Active In Northside
4230 Hamilton Ave.
Cincinnati, OH 45223
(513) 591-2246 


By Gwen Finegan
Gwen Finegan is a writer, consultant, & Northside resident.  Her successful nomination resulted in this recognition for CAIN.

Churches Active In Northside
About Churches Active In Northside (9 Articles)
CAIN is a neighborhood ministry that transforms lives and inspires hope by providing nutritious food, crisis assistance, resources, and compassion in a way that respects human dignity and builds a more vibrant community.

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