Guests at the National Awards dinner on the opening night of the convention were reminded by Ken Burnett of how far the Institute of Fundraising had come since the early days.
"I remember the institute when it was just a few members going to the pub to whinge about how bad fundraising was," he said as he accepted the Lifetime Contribution award from fellow veteran fundraiser George Smith.
He also joked that he would have preferred to receive the Up-and-Coming Fundraiser award, which was won by Deborah Roe of the Scottish Spina Bifida Association. "There's something very final about a Lifetime Contribution award," he said.
The award to Burnett, acknowledged as one of the outstanding fundraisers of recent years, was the high point of the dinner for more than 800 guests at the Hilton London Metropole.
In his speech, he praised colleagues he had worked with in the past and the new generation of fundraisers. But he kept his strongest tribute for someone closer to home: "Not the little old lady from Tunbridge Wells, not Dorothy donor, but my wife Marie."
He recalled how she had cut an advert from a newspaper and put it in front of him one morning, telling him this was the job he should go for. He got the job at the charity that later became ActionAid. He never looked back.
'It was good to celebrate success and the performance of the industry' - David Wreathall, head of direct fundraising, National Trust
'There was a good national breadth of charities that won - from Scotland, the north and the south of England' - Stewart Marks, head of fundraising, Marie Curie Cancer Care
'It was fantastic - we won an award' - Kerry Dunn, head of supporter development, RSPB
'I am personally delighted that the Cinderella of fundraising has finally gone to the ball' - Mark Astarita, director of fundraising, British Red Cross, on the face-to-face award for Arcadia
AND THE WINNERS WERE ...
Best E-media Campaign: Workplace Giving UK
Shortlisted: Help the Aged, Shelter
Best Direct Mail Fundraising Campaign: Royal United Hospital, Bath -
Forever Friends Appeal
Shortlisted: Barnado's, RSPCA Cash Appeal
Best Telephone Campaign: British Red Cross
Shortlisted: Crisis Cold Telemarketing, NDCS
Best Face-to-face Campaign: Arcadia Group
Shortlisted: Mencap, Quarriers
Best Local/Regional Campaign: Sense Scotland - Making it Happen
Shortlisted: Big C Cancer Information and Support Centre, Grove House
Best Business-Charity Partnership: Burton and the Bobby Moore Fund for
Cancer Research UK
Shortlisted: Howdens Joinery and Leonard Cheshire, Vodaphone National
Autistic Society Partnership
Best Donor Acquisition Campaign: Faber Maunsell Ltd
Shortlisted: Red Cross/Middle East, Soil Association
Best Donor Development Campaign: Orbis and RSPB (joint winners)
Shortlisted: National Trust Scotland
Most Innovative Fundraising Campaign: Barnardo's Scotland - Store Wars
Shortlisted: National Yummy Mummy, Tache Back 2006
INDIVIDUALS AND TEAMS
Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year: Ken Deeks, NCH
Shortlisted: Peter and Margaret Long, Philip Milne
Fundraising Team of the Year: Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh
Shortlisted: Leonard Cheshire Corporate Fundraising Team, Woodland Trust
Best Fundraising Charity to Work For: Sue Ryder Care
Shortlisted: Youthnet, WAYC
Best Up-and-Coming Fundraiser: Deborah Roe, Scottish Spina Bifida
Shortlisted: Abi Crawford, Anna Paune
Fundraiser of the Year: Nichola Betts, Clic Sargent
Shortlisted: Joanne Dunsford, Andy Harris
Lifetime Contribution Award: Ken Burnett