Encore.org Awards Creative Community Problem Solvers

Mar 3, 2011

Today we thought we’d highlight a great group of Americans who are doing amazing things in their communities.

The first ever Launch Pad contest awarded grants to people who created innovative solutions to problems facing their communities. The winners represent our great American diversity and both in their backgrounds and in the impact they generate.

From 30,000 nominations, winners of the Encore Launch Pad contest were selected by the public through a month long online voting period.

Points of Light Institute congratulates the five winners!

Anne Cheung, 59, from South Amboy, New Jersey. Cheung will work to develop a cancer support group that will provide information and support to Chinese speaking patients in New York City.

Anthony Genia, 68, from Lauderdale, Minnesota. Genia will create a culturally-responsive entrepreneurship curriculum to orient preteen Native Americans to the U.S. economic system and business world.

Linda Grotberg, 66, from Wimbledon, North Dakota. Grotberg will help local farmers make sunflower oil fuel to support renewable biofuel production which will help increase and maintain small farms and rural communities.

James Robinson, 47, from Huntsville, Alabama. Robinson will provide independent living services to LGBT youth in Alabama at risk for homelessness.

Janine Vanderburg, 57, from Denver, Colorado. Vanderburg will train corporate salespeople in nonprofit fundraising in an intensive fundraising program to help boomers with sales backgrounds transition to nonprofit fundraising.

All five will receive $5,000 each, plus resources and support from the larger Encore.org community to pursue their causes.

“The winners – and the tens of thousands of votes they collectively received – show that growing numbers of Americans in the second half of life are eager to put their ideas and experience to work for the public good,” says Alexandra Céspedes Kent, director of the Purpose Prize, another prize in conjuction with encore.org.

Click here for more information about the finalists and winners.

For the full press release click here.

Who is making a difference in your community? Pay tribute to them here.

Points of Light

We are champions of civic engagement with a mission to inspire, equip and mobilize people to take action that changes the world.