LEXINGTON, Ky. — Christian Appalachian Project (CAP) selected Rob and Brittany Lawson as their 2019 Philanthropists of the Year during the annual National Philanthropy Day celebration hosted by the Association of Fundraising Professionals. The couple were recognized for their years of service and financial support provided to CAP in pursuit of its mission to build hope, transform lives, and share Christ’s life through service in Appalachia.
“We are so proud of the relationship that CAP has been able to develop with Rob and Brittany over the years,” said Guy Adams, president/CEO of Christian Appalachian Project. “They don’t just care by writing a check. When they get involved with your organization, they give you all of themselves. They are selfless servants who are bold enough to share CAP’s mission with people they encounter. They truly are generous and live generously.”
Rob, regional director at Thrivent Financial, has been helping clients with financial planning for nearly a decade. His wife, Brittany, has been a financial consultant with Thrivent for the past five years. Thrivent’s mission is to help their clients be wise with money and live generously.
“As a Christian, everything that we have is a gift from God and generosity is one of the greatest expressions of our faith,” said Brittany, following the award ceremony. “Some people are called to go and some people are called to send. I am not always able to go, but I love knowing that I can provide financial support to a group like CAP that does good work serving people in need in Appalachia. I hope everyone, when they see a need, will meet it.”
Her husband serves on the Board of Directors of CAP and the couple has also worked to facilitate sponsorship of CAP’s Church Advisory Council. The Lawsons have multiplied their generosity by facilitating over $1 million of financial impact to Central Kentucky; volunteered and helped distribute over 100,000 meals across Eastern Kentucky and Haiti, packed and funded the sending of care packages to troops; and supported the building or repairing of over 100 homes in Central Kentucky. Brittany also recently helped build homes in El Salvador.
“I grew up in Appalachia,” Rob said. “I grew up in a nice trailer, but I grew up with kids with no shoes, outhouses, no heat. It means a lot to be able to give back to the place where I came from. There are a lot of generous people that just need to take that first step. There is always someone in proximity to us that we can help. That is how you start to practice a lifestyle of generosity.”
Adams concluded, “We can all be philanthropists when we give of ourselves. People who live generously do so through their service, their prayer support, or their financial support. It is more than just writing a check. It could be faithfully praying for the charity that you support regularly and always being quick to volunteer if service is needed. That to me is what philanthropy is and it’s great when you see people who live every facet of philanthropy like Rob and Brittany.”