MEDIA ADVISORY: February 23, 2011
FOR INFORMATION CONTACT:
CityClub is pleased to announce the selection of the five winners of the 2011 Washington State Jefferson Awards. The winners were selected by a panel of six judges, who faced the difficult task of narrowing down the field of nominees to five of the most outstanding community service heroes in the state. A brief summary of each winner’s accomplishments is included below.
Ahndrea Blue – Seattle, WA
Through her work to establish a food bank in east Tacoma, Ahndrea and "The Making A Difference Foundation" have brought relief to those in need in this community and inspired many others to volunteer. The food bank, called Eloise’s Cooking Pot, provides a balanced and nutritious diet to families in need, and also provides food for those with dietary or cultural food requirements. Her community service philosophy: "I recognize that everyone, at a point in their life, needs help. I am hoping that by helping people with food and other items, when they are on their feet and are able, that they will pay it forward and help someone else."
Phyllis Jean Camfield – Port Townsend, WA
Jean Camfield not only helped to found and operate the East Jefferson County Habitat for Humanity Affiliate for many years, she completely revolutionized the organization’s funding model by opening the “Habitat Store,” a furniture store whose profits help fund the purchase of land for further Habitat for Humanity development. The store is mostly volunteer run. And she still comes in on Tuesdays to work with volunteers as they sort, price, repair and clean donated merchandise.
Megan Johnson – Federal Way, WA
Megan Johnson has accomplished more in her 19 years than most do in a lifetime. Though she endured 27 surgeries to correct a facial disorder, she has worked tirelessly to help those less fortunate in her community. She is the founder of Kids Helping Kids, an organization that collects and distributes DVDs to the patients in children’s hospitals; From the Heart, an organization that makes and distributes blankets for babies affected by drugs or poverty; and Megan’s Mission, an organization that gives out blankets and other necessities to the homeless to remind them that they are not forgotten. She has donated much of her own money to various causes, from the local homeless shelter to victims of Hurricane Katrina.
Peggy LaPorte – Federal Way, WA
In 1993, Peggy LaPorte recognized a need to help the homeless in South King County and founded FUSION. Seventeen years later, FUSION operates under Peggy’s guidance with an all-volunteer staff of over 200 to provide transitional housing to those in need. The organization owns 16 units. Peggy’s tireless pursuit of government grants, corporate sponsorships, private donations and volunteers testifies to her tenacity. Her organization has become a nationally-recognized non-profit, and has changed the lives of over 165 families by providing them with a secure environment and clear goals to help them get back on their feet.
Jim Theofelis – Seattle, WA
Jim Theofelis founded the Mockingbird Society in 2001, an organization that empowers youth in foster care to advocate for themselves. The goal of the Mockingbird Society is simple, yet innovative: Ask the youth who are in the foster care and kinship care system what can be done to improve it, and bring their voices to bear on social justice and change. The Mockingbird Society has gone from a small non-profit operating out of an office underneath the University Bridge, to a statewide organization of youth in every region, who advocate for themselves in their community and at the state level. His work has directly affected the lives of many youths in need, and has had a direct impact on legislation at both the state and federal level.
If you are interested in interviewing the winners, please contact CityClub for more information.
The winners of will be profiled on King 5’s Evening Magazine during the week of March 28 – April 1. The five winners will be celebrated at the Jefferson Awards breakfast on April 13th at the Space Needle! The public is invited to join us in celebrating our five statewide winners, along with the National Nominee, to be announced at the breakfast.
If you are interested in learning more about or attending the 2011 Jefferson Awards Breakfast, go to www.SeattleCityClub.org/JeffersonAwards. Free coffee tickets available for members of the press - please contact CityClub at 206.682.7395 in advance.
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