Conrad N. Hilton Fund for Sisters to Receive Charles Carroll Award from Leading Catholic Philanthropists for “Encouraging the Worldwide Ministries of Catholic Women Religious”

January 25, 2010  |  Contact: Francis J. Butler 202-223-3550, Barbara Casey 310-473-8090

WASHINGTON, D.C. The Catholic philanthropic community has chosen the Conrad N. Hilton Fund for Sisters as the 2010 Charles Carroll Award honoree for its support of the worldwide ministries of Catholic women religious.

The Charles Carroll Award is conferred by the board of directors of the Washington, D.C.-based Foundations and Donors Interested in Catholic Activities (FADICA), an organization of private foundations and major donors that works to strengthen Catholic philanthropy.   Named after Charles Carroll of Carrollton, MD., best known as the only Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence, a lifelong champion of religious freedom  and a generous church benefactor, it is given to philanthropic organizations with exceptional impact on the vitality of Catholic charitable ministry and work.

The Conrad N. Hilton Fund for Sisters, headquartered in Los Angeles, CA, was established in 1986 by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation as an independent organization run by the Sisters.  Conrad N. Hilton, an international business pioneer who founded Hilton Hotels, left his fortune to the foundation to help the world’s most disadvantaged and vulnerable people, and in his last will and testament directed its board to support the work of the Roman Catholic Sisters as he had throughout his life.

The Fund for Sisters has awarded approximately $75 million in grants for educational, health and social service ministries of sisters in 130 countries. Grants by the Fund have strengthened the ministries of sisters in the areas of maternal and child health, literacy and education, HIV/AIDS education, agricultural and solar projects, and aid to refugees, immigrants and orphans.

The Carroll Award was created by Catholic philanthropic leadership to be the collective voice of praise and encouragement for outstanding charitable service and actions that reflect the virtues of generosity, integrity and responsibility.

The Conrad N. Hilton Fund for Sisters is the 11th recipient of the Carroll Award since its inception nearly 30 years ago.   The award will be accepted by Sister Joyce Meyer, executive director of the Fund and a member of Sisters of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary (PBVM) Roman Catholic congregation.  She has headed the Fund for the past 10 years.  The award ceremony will take place at the Naples Grande Hotel on January 28 during a dinner given in honor of the Fund by the FADICA board of directors.

The dinner precedes a national symposium entitled: The Leadership and Philanthropy of Women Religious, A Tradition Embraces the Future. The invitational meeting is also sponsored by FADICA to celebrate the charitable efforts of women religious.

FADICA was established in 1976 as a membership organization for private foundations and major donors who work together to improve the effectiveness of their charitable giving through professional conferences, research and sharing best practices. Throughout its history, the members of FADICA have a special interest in the work of women religious. The organization played a pivotal role in starting the National Religious Retirement Office, a program of financial aid to American Religious Communities.  FADICA also played a founding role in Support Our Aging Religious (SOAR).

Most recently FADICA and the Leadership Conference of Women Religious worked jointly to raise over $7 million to restore the ministries of women religious in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.