Altra’s Routing #: 291881216
Altra Gives

Best Life Community Awards 2023 Winners

Best Life Community Awards

The 2023 Winners have been announced!

2023 Community Choice Award


Selected by popular vote by community members, the award is granted to one nonprofit organization.


Tyler, TX

Provides hope, health, and healing everyday as our volunteers take their own specially trained and certified pets to schools, hospitals, prisons, community organizations, libraries, and community events. Therapet is 100% donor-supported non-profit and we do not charge any facility, program, or person for our services. Animal Assisted Therapy is a therapeutic approach that involves specially trained and certified therapy animals, in the treatment process to help individuals improve their physical, emotional, social, and cognitive well-being.

2023 Impact Award


Selected by past BLCA recipients, the award is granted to one nonprofit organization.

First Teen Clothes Closet

La Crosse, WI

The First Teen Clothes Closet is a non-profit, equitable, free service to youth concentrating on the teen ages. Our mission is to provide free, gently-used and some new, in-style clothing and personal care items for late elementary, middle, high and post high school teens in need. We offer junior/adult size clothing, sizes 7-15 shoes, and many personal care products. FTCC volunteers collaborate with the La Crosse County area schools, social service agencies, and other supportive community groups to promote area teens to utilize this service. 

2023 Employees’ Choice Award


Selected by popular vote by Altra employees, the award is granted to one nonprofit organization in each of Altra’s core community states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Tennessee, and Texas.


2023 Community Assistance Award

$2,500 or more

Selected by a panel of judges, the awards are granted to ten nonprofit finalists that have been nominated by members.

Holmen Area Food Pantry
Ready Set School
Community Engagement Response Team
Adult & Teen Challenge Western Wisconsin
Gear Up, Inc
Holmen Booster Club
La Crosse County Historical Society
Winona Arts Center
Centering Onalaska
Friends of the Blufflands
St. Joseph's Ridge Lions Club

Adult & Teen Challenge of Western Wisconsin

ATCWW's mission is to provide an opportunity to individuals in gaining freedom from chemical addictions and other life controlling problems by addressing spiritual, physical, and emotional needs. Most women who enter our program are hopeless, at the end of their rope, and desperate. They often have tried other treatment programs to no avail. Most traditional treatment programs are 30-90 days and it's been proven that rehabilitation takes longer than those programs give. Our program is a minimum of one year long. Many clients have been in and out of jail or prison and some have had their children removed from the home for neglect or inability to care for them. We partner with Safe Families for Children to help find temporary homes for the children so that the women can restore their families.

Bear Creek Services

We support more than 100 people who have developmental disabilities or traumatic brain injury. People we support have medical conditions that include brain injuries, Autism, behavior disorders, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome, or other intellectual disabilities. Our programs include residential living and independent living.

Community Engagement Response Team

(C.E.R.T) is a team of people that share the same passion, to assist people that live in the Rochester community. We believe that engaging with our community will assist our team by gaining trust of many youths and adults, establishing rapport with community members, and building respectful relationships with business owners. We believe that where there is poverty and despair, there is crime. By engaging with people in this community we can create friendly, family activities, create safe environments for mediation as well as bring many resources such as food, financial institutions, mental health programs and job opportunities to those that are underserved.

Friends of the Blufflands

Created for conservation, stewardship, and sustainability of the blufflands of La Crosse and surrounding communities. We enhance the natural resources and their appreciation through rehabilitation of natural areas, protection of natural resources, appropriate development of nature related trails & facilities, and education on the best practices of conservation. Friends of the Blufflands supports diverse populations who want to recreate in the blufflands including hikers, nature lovers, photographers, birders, cross-country skiers and more.

The Holmen Activities Booster Club Inc.

We aim to support students, staff, and the community with access to further enhance educational experiences.  As an organization we are committed to backing the opportunities presented within the School District of Holmen that include, but are not limited to, educational needs, extracurricular activities, and community engagement. Our mission to serve others fosters a sense of giving to those that receive our support that continues to pay itself forward by fostering more giving.

La Crosse County Historical Society

LCHS provides engagement with our community's rich heritage through our museums, public programs, and artifact collection. We strive to provide a cultural reflection of our community and tell stories of members who have been historically underrepresented in our shared history. We partner with organizations and groups to provide a more inclusive and accurate historical narrative shared in their own voice. At our local history museum, the La Crosse Area Heritage Center, we tell the stories of all who came before, including the Ho-Chunk, early White settlers and immigrants, Black barbers, and, more recently, Hmong refugees.

Ready Set School

Provides school supplies and clothing for Winona County preK-12 students. Having the necessary supplies and clothing for school is imperative to a successful education. It can improve attitudes toward learning, it can improve student’s confidence in the classroom, and it can work toward lessening the achievement gap between students. We help Winona area students and teachers live their best life by being a resource for the tools they need to be successful in the classroom and reducing the financial burden on them!

Safe Families for Children

(SFFC) creates extended family-like support for struggling families through a community of devoted volunteers motivated by compassion to keep children safe and ultimately together with their families. SFFC advances relational, physical and emotional health equity by: 1) preventing child abuse by providing safe, temporary homes for children from families in crisis while the parents seek to restore stability in their lives, 2) supporting and stabilizing families in crisis by providing mentoring and referrals to appropriate resources, and 3) deflecting children from entering the child welfare system by keeping healthy families intact.

St. Josephs Ridge Lions Club

We serve where we live and utilize our State and National organization to extend our serving power statewide and globally. We have a network of service-minded people aimed to change lives for the better. Whenever a Lions Club gets together, problems get smaller, and communities get better! Our club aims to serve and make a difference every day and everywhere. We help where help is needed with unmatched integrity and energy.

Eligible Nonprofits

Altra members may nominate any nonprofit organization whom they’ve personally supported within the last 12 months with their time, talent, or treasure. Nonprofits must also meet the following requirements:

  • Active 501(c)(3) status with the IRS
  • Must have a direct impact in one of the following areas:
    • Wisconsin Counties: La Crosse, Trempealeau, Monroe, and Vernon
    • Minnesota Counties: Houston, Olmsted, Filmore and Winona
    • Tennessee: Montgomery County
    • Texas: Smith County
    • Colorado: Pueblo County
    • New Jersey: Mercer County
  • Nonprofit work must be focused in any one of the following giving areas:
    • Education (Pre-K through college):Access to education, mentoring, educational materials/experiences/programming.
    • Cultural Enrichment:Fair access to art experiences, underrepresented art and cultural organizations, and programs.
    • Health:Equitable access to healthcare, mental health, patient support, disability services and veteran advocacy.
    • Preserving or restoring the environment:Conservation, stewardship, and sustainability.
    • Human Services:Affordable housing, homelessness, senior advocacy, infant and child support, food insecurity resources, domestic abuse assistance.
    • Strengthening local communities:Neighborhoods, public safety, search and rescue, outdoor spaces, rotary/chamber, small and start-up businesses.

2021 winners are ineligible until 2024
2022 winners are ineligible until 2025

Information Needed

To nominate a nonprofit, you will be asked for the following information:
1. How you have supported the organization in the past 12 months
2. A description of your personal involvement with the organization
3. the way the organization helps realize Altra's mission of Helping you live your BEST life.

Award Amounts

The Altra Best Life Community Awards will be awarded in the following amounts:

  • Community Choice Award: (1) $10,000
    Selected by popular vote by community members, the award is granted to one nonprofit organization.
  • Impact Award (1) $7,500
    Selected by past BLCA recipients, the award is granted to one nonprofit organization.
  • Employees’ Choice Award: (4) $5,000
    Selected by popular vote by Altra employees, the award is granted to one nonprofit organization in each of Altra’s core community states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Tennessee, and Texas.
  • Community Assistance Award: (10) $2,500 or more
    Selected by a panel of judges, the awards are granted to ten nonprofit finalists that have been nominated by members.
  • Employee Volunteerism Award: (5) $1,500
    Awarded based upon employee volunteer hours, the award is granted to a nonprofit organization on behalf of Altra’s five employee volunteers.