Foundation seeking nominations for social justice awards

Foundation seeking nominations for social justice awards

CHAMPAIGN — Do you know someone, or some organization, that has tackled a social injustice and made a difference?

The McKinley Presbyterian Foundation is seeking nominations to honor two individual people and two organizations with its third annual social justice awards. The foundation is seeking nominations of those people or organizations that have worked to help raise awareness of injustice issues and made significant improvements for those who have suffered unfair treatment, according to Kathie Spegal, the foundation's development committee chairwoman, who began this award recognition three years ago.

"We just wanted to keep people recognizing that there are people in the community doing important things and thinking about others first," said Jane Cain, a development committee member.

She and Spegal said the awards also reflect the social justice mission of the more-than-century-old McKinley Presbyterian Foundation at the University of Illinois.

The awards will given in four categories: community member, community agency or organization, student and student organization. Applications for nomination shouldn't exceed two pages, according to the foundation.

Applications are due Jan. 20, and applicants from last year who didn't win are encouraged to reapply this year, Cain said.

Winners will each receive $500 and will be honored at a March 3 dinner to which the public will be invited.

Organization winners last year were SmileHealthy, the Don Moyer Boys & Girls Club, and a student organization called Roots & Shoots UIUC.

Individual winners last year were Barbara Kessel, who was recognized for her support for Books to Prisoners and efforts to fight the police use of Tasers, and Alice Foreman, a University of Illinois student honored for founding the Society for Environmental Studies and working with Interfaith in Action and the One Million Meals for Haiti meal-packing event.

For more information about the award and to apply, see the foundation's website at or call 344-0297.

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