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A Shared Vision for Change & Justice
Each year the Marshall Fields Foundation recognizes exceptional citizens in the state and nation devoted to excellence in public safety, civic engagement, community service, legislative processes and the improvement of victims and witnesses rights. These individuals have demonstrated high professional integrity in their profession and have earned the respect of colleagues, staff, and community.
SOCIAL CHANGE & JUSTICE AWARD recipients
2012 Award HonoreeYouth Activism
Scarlet Jiminez is an outgoing, highly motivated youth activist. As president of the student council at Hinkley High School Scarlet worked with her peers to organize a student walk out and protest.
Scarlet and more than 100 of her peers at Hinkley "took to the streets" to protest the potential non-renewals of 10 Aurora Public Schools teachers.
The Aurora Public Schools Board of Education let go of three Hinkley High School teachers due to "unsatisfactory performance". Scarlett Jiminez, 16, was a student of a teacher who was laid off. She said she hadn't been paying attention to the plight of public education until her favorite teacher's job was at risk — social studies teacher Tom Bergen. "He was such an amazing teacher, one that inspires you, he inspired me," she said.
She hopes her fellow comrades recognize the importance of standing up for teachers like Bergen. "I hope that people get involved and take a stand within the community because we deserve to, We can't just sit there and take it anymore."
Currently Scarlet is working to re-instate comprehensive reproductive health education into Aurora Public School system to decrease the number of student's pregnant at Hinkley High school from 120 to less than 100. Scarlet is also passionate about improving the quality of education for all students attending school in Original Aurora. Although she is in the International Baccalaureate program at Hinkley High School, she recognizes this "scholarly haven" is not available to students throughout original Aurora. Scarlet seeks to develop more educational and positive opportunities for youth in Aurora and believes education is the civil rights movement of this era!
2012 Award HonoreeA Legacy of Service and Advocacy
Founder of Voices of Victims
We are honoring Mr. Andrew Romanoff for his unweaving commitment over the decades to democracy, charity and the betterment of mankind. Andrew won national acclaim after serving eight years in the Colorado House of Representatives, including four years as the Speaker of the House. He led the Democrats in the State House to their first back-to-back victories – and their largest majority – in nearly half a century. Term limits required Andrew to leave the legislature in 2009.
Currently, Andrew Romanoff is a Senior Advisor for an international development organization that has equipped four million rural households in Africa, Asia and Latin America with the technology and training they need to increase their standard of living and climb out of extreme poverty. To make democracy work, we must be a nation of participants, not simply observers. Andrew's integrity, compassion, vision and courage are a set of behaviors we cele brate.
We honor and recognize his many contributions to the state of Colorado and beyond.
2010 Award HonoreeFirst Lady of Colorado
Lifetime Achievement Award
Jeannie Ritter capitalized on her opportunity as First Lady of Colorado to focus on mental health awareness. Within the first two years she participated in hundreds of local meetings and community engagements, national summits, statewide conferences and consulted with leading experts in the mental health field.
She began to identify common mental health needs across Colorado’s diverse landscape – on the front range, in mountain resorts, urban settings, frontier and ranching communities. As a strong advocate for veterans, she has worked with local funders, the Veterans Administration and community providers in establishing the Civilians for Veterans Fund, whose mission is to provide confidential mental health and substance use services to veterans and their families in their local communities at no cost.
Jeannie and her husband, Bill, have four children. Underlying everything Bill and Jeannie have accomplished is their commitment to each other. These two people have won numerous awards in their distinguished endeavors, but this one captures who they are… Courageous Citizens of Colorado. In this instance, one- plus-one equals courage, character, integrity and unweaving commitment to our state and country.
Governor Bill Ritter
2010 Award HonoreeLifetime Achievement Award
Bill Ritter, Jr. was elected as Colorado’s 41st governor in 2006 – the first Colorado-born governor in more than 35 years. Since taking office, he has implemented a 21st century strategy for leading Colorado forward and positioning the state for a strong future.
He has established Colorado as a national and international leader in the New Energy Economy, attracting thousands of new jobs and hundreds of new companies as Colorado leads the country toward a new energy future.
He has enacted an aggressive business-development and job-creation agenda focused on knowledge-based industries of the future, such as energy, aerospace, biosciences and technology.
He has initiated sweeping education reforms and increased state investments in higher education so that Colorado continues to provide one of the best-educated workforces in America.
He has improved access to quality and affordable health care for Coloradans who lack health coverage, and this year he introduced legislation to provide health coverage to more than 100,000 uninsured Coloradans.
He introduced the FASTER transportation legislation to fix unsafe bridges and roads and create a framework for funding a modern, 21st century transportation system.
He has improved the way state government does business by putting more and more services online, making government more transparent and open, and making government more efficient and cost-effective.
For his love and labor for truth, justice and fairness. We honor Governor Ritter for his commitment and contributions to the people of the State of Colorado through public service.
Governor Ritter played a pivotal role in passing witness protection laws through legislation. For his sensitivity toward witnesses and criminal justice the Fields Wolfe Memorial Fund and the mother’s of Javad and Vivian give their heartfelt appreciate for his leadership and commitment.
2009 Award HonoreeAssociate Vice President for Student Affairs,
Adviser to Provost on Retention
Colorado State University
Paul taught public school and worked in grass-roots community organizations before joining Colorado State University in 1979. As Director of the Center for Educational Access and Outreach (1979-1997), he spent many years helping students develop the skills and motivation to gain admission to colleges and universities. Since then he has been working on programs and institutional structures designed to assure students’ completion of a University degree, first as Director of Undergraduate Student Retention (1997-2003), later as Executive Director of the Center for Advising and Student Achievement (2003-2006), and currently as Associate Vice President for Student Affairs and Special Advisor to the Provost for Retention. He presents nationally and locally on student retention and institutional strategies for increasing student success. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Williams College, and his Masters and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the University of Colorado at Denver.
Paul and his wife Marilyn have two children and live in Fort Collins. He is proud to have known Javad and Vivian, and cherishes their memory. He believes that anything is possible through education, character, hard work, and service to others.
Paul’s influence and demonstrated leadership in higher education have earned him much admiration and respect from students, faculty, and student affairs professionals. Through his mentoring, teaching and advising he has shaped the minds and hearts of young people seeking to take their place in our world tomorrow. Colorado State University is fortunate to have a collaborative leader like Paul who is making a powerful difference in the lives of young people.
Jeanne M. Smith
2008 Award HonoreeDir. Division of Criminal Justice
Colorado Department of Public Safety
For over 30-years, Jeanne has had a powerful impact on the field of criminal justice and the lives of countless victims and survivors of crime and those who serve them. Governor Bill Ritter appointed Ms. Jeanne M. Smith as the Director of the Division of Criminal Justice in April, 2007. This division undertakes criminal justice policy, research, strategic planning and training throughout the state as well as the oversight of Community Correction programs. She serves as the Executive Director of the Witness Protection Board for Colorado and has strengthened a unique partnership between law enforcement and the victims' rights community. She provides technical training and guidance around the state as it relates to the safety and security of victims and witnesses.
Thanks to her demonstrated commitment to the advancement of the goals and objectives of public safety, she serves on the newly created Juvenile Clemency board and the vice-chair of the board for Safe2Tell, a non-profit entity focused on school safety issues. She was instrumental in leading and drafting Safe2Tell school-based legislation which provides a proactive means to keep our schools and communities safer.
Ms. Smith was the elected District Attorney for Fourth Judicial District of Colorado for eight years from January 1997 through January 2005. She also served as a prosecutor in that office for 22-years. From February 2005 through March 2007, Ms. Smith was the Deputy Attorney General for the Criminal Justice Section of the Colorado Attorney General’s office. The State of Colorado is the fortunate to have a collaborative leader like Jeanne Smith who is making a powerful difference in the trenches of criminal justice, crime prevention and public safety.
2007 Award HonoreeExecutive Director
Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance (COVA)
Nancy Lewis graduated from Edinboro State College in Pennsylvania in 1966. Thereafter, she directed an alternative high school in Westminster and the Woman School Network in Lakewood. In 1994 Nancy became the Executive Director of the Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance (COVA). That same year, Nancy also volunteered for the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office Victim Assistance Program and continued serving that community for 12 years.
As Executive Director of COVA, Nancy directed the COVA response to the Oklahoma City Bombing trials, the Columbine High School and Platte Canyon High School shootings and lead a crisis response team that responded to victims of the September 11th terrorist attacks in New York City.
Nancy also provided assistance to the victims of Hurricane Katrina that were relocated to Colorado. Nancy currently serves on the Governor’s Victim’s Compensation and Assistance Coordinating Committee and the Metropolitan State College Criminal Justice Program Advisory Committee. Nancy is widely respected throughout the state and nation.
The State of Colorado is fortunate to have Nancy Lewis as a thoughtful leader who is committed to creating bridges of fairness, equality, participation and inclusion is a way the empowers crime victims.
2012 Award HonoreeA Legacy of Public Safety and Justice
In recognition of his exceptional career in public safety and criminal justice as District Attorney for the Seventeenth Judicial District and Chief Deputy for the Attorney General's Office. Don's bold and thoughtful leadership embodies unweaving dedication to justice – not merely to win cases, but to do justice; to protect fellow citizens; to empower the most vulnerable among us, and to uphold the rule of law.
Don's steadfast commitment to the people of Adams and Broomfield Counties has earned him tremendous respect in the community, law enforcement, crime victims, and most importantly his employees. Don Quick has over 25 years of prosecution experience and has argued and won cases before the Colorado Supreme Court.
Don Quick was first appointed in January, 1999, by Attorney General Ken Salazar to supervise the Criminal Justice Section of the Attorney General's Office. During this time he supervised Capital Crimes, Gang Prosecutions, Foreign Prosecutions, Securities Fraud, Insurance Fraud, and Complex Crimes through the use of the statewide grand jury.
He has maintained a strong community presence and has served on a number of state committees involving Witness Protection Funds, Victim Services, School Crime Stoppers Programs, and Domestic Violence Policies.
Governor John Hickenlooper appointed Don to his transition team and Governor Bill Ritter appointed Don Quick to the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Commission. Don currently serves on the Board of Directors for Safe2Tell, the District 50 Education Foundation and is the co-chair of the Blue Ribbon Commission for the Adams County Homeless to Home Partnership.
We honor Don Quick for his multilateral approach to fighting crime and reducing recidivism in the State of Colorado.
Regina Huerter- Executive
2011 Award HonoreeDirector, Crime Prevention
A Tribute to Prevention & Juvenile Justice Advocacy
For over 32 years, Regina has had a powerful impact on the field of criminal justice. Currently she is the Executive Director of Denver's Crime Prevention and Control Commission working to create a more effective and efficient juvenile and adult justice system and alternatives to jail and prison. Previously she was the President and CEO of Urban Peak. Urban Peak and its affiliates provide intervention and treatment services to homeless and inner-city youth. She was an employee of the City of Denver District Attorney's Office for over 11 years as the Director of the Denver District Attorney's Juvenile Diversion Program and project manager for several large system change efforts. She is local and national consultant on youth subcultures.
She has presented seminars and facilitated courses on a local, state and national level related to criminal justice and works as adjunct faculty for Metropolitan State College. Currently she serves on the Governor's Colorado Criminal and Juvenile Justice Commission where she is the Chair of the Reentry, Behavioral Health and Treatment Funding and Juvenile Justice Reform Committees. She is the recipient of several awards and Denver is fortunate to have a collaborative leader like Regie Huerter who is making a powerful difference in the trenches of criminal justice, crime prevention and public safety.
2011 Award HonoreeFounder of Voices of Victims
A Tribute to Courageous Leadership
Today, we are honoring Mr. Joe Cannata for his unweaving commitment over the decades for walking alongside those harmed by crime. Joe has summoned the strength to rebuild lives after a crime by responding to the needs of others with skillful guidance. His outstanding efforts and leadership has advanced victims' rights in the state of Colorado.
Since 1987, when his daughter Lynn was murdered by her then-boyfriend, Denver resident Joe Cannata and his wife Kaye turned their personal tragedy into activism by providing direct advocacy services for victims of violent crimes. In 2004, after years of working with lawmakers, he proudly saw "Lynn Law" become a reality. The law requires violent offenders to serve at least 75 percent of their sentence before becoming eligible for parole. Joe and his wife Kaye also started their own non-profit, Voices of Victims, which offers post pre-sentencing support an advocacy to victims of violent crime and their families. More information is available on their website ww.voicesofvictims.org. Joe is a leader of statewide outreach with a goal of promoting public awareness on such topics as crime victim rights, criminal justice reforms, and public safety.
Joe and Kaye Cannata exemplify integrity and sense of community that the Colorado Courageous Citizens Award was meant to honor.
Aliyah M. Cook
2011 Award HonoreeStudent
A Tribute to Courageous Leadership
Aliyah Monique Cook is a 9 years old and attends Trailswest Elementary School in Cherry Creek. Just this year she earned her way into REACH class an advanced class at her school. Aliyah lived and attended school in Japan for two years. She speaks conversational Japanese and loves their culture and food. She also enjoys reading, swimming, traveling and promoting intergenerational dialog about issues of racial equality in Colorado's public school system. Her focus is "Will I Ever Have a Black Teacher?" We salute Aliyah for her strength of character and bold voice for quality education for all kids.
Dr. David Benke
2010 Award HonoreeMath Teacher
A Tribute to School Safety and Bravery
Dr. David Benke has been teaching in public schools for 33 years. He has taught college and high school as well as middle school students. In addition to teaching public school, Dr. Benke was a finalist for Colorado Teacher of the Year and also taught on a nationwide television satellite network.
On February 23, 2010, a gunman opened fire at Deer Creek Middle School. Dr. Benke bravely tackled and disarmed the gunman who had shot and wounded two students in front of the school. In a split second, Dr. Benke went from being a beloved math teacher to being a hero. His courage and this selfless act embodies the principles of the Fields Wolfe Memorial Fund Courageous Citizen of Colorado Award. We are honored to celebrate him this evening. Dr. Benke has been married to his lovely wife Sandra for almost 24 years and they have three great children.
Special Agent Susan Payne
2009 Award HonoreeExecutive Director Safe2Tell
Colorado Department of Public Safety,
Homeland and Security
Special Agent Susan Payne is the Executive Director for Safe2Tell – a not-for-profit school safety and prevention initiative that provides a safe and anonymous way for students to report any concerns to their safety or the safety of others with a focus on early intervention and prevention through awareness and education. Susan is a member of the Colorado Department of Public Safety- Homeland Security and can directly respond to the request of a school or law enforcement agency for assistance in restoring a safe school environment after a traumatic event or identified threat.
After the tragic events at Columbine High School in 2001, Susan was appointed to the Attorney General’s office to develop a statewide program to facilitate open lines of communication and collaboration between young people, parents, school staff, law enforcement and government agencies – resulting in the creation and development of Safe2Tell. Her vision is that every child should know what to do when they have knowledge of a threat to their safety or the safety of someone else and have a way to report it in a way that keeps them safe.
Susan has a unique ability to bring about partnerships with experts, state agencies, private organizations and philanthropic foundations to work toward efforts in the best interest of children that include policy development, legislative efforts and best practices for increased academic success. Susan comes from a law enforcement family, the mother of three children and appreciates the support of family and friends who have all contributed toward the success of Safe2Tell through their support of her efforts.
2008 Award HonoreeVictim Assistant Coord.
Douglas Country Sheriff's Office
For more than 22-years, Patty Moschner has dedicated herself to providing and improving services for victims. Her tenure began in 1986 with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office as the Victims Assistance Coordinator serving victims of crime and the criminal justice community. Her life’s focus has been on bringing justice and effective care to those harmed by crime.
She has served on numerous boards, councils, advisory committees, organizations, as a trainer and an advisor, on steering committees, and as a facilitator of a myriad of victim related panels. A major accomplishment achieved under Patty’s leadership was the coordination and implementation of a county-based witness protection training program for law enforcement. This model project will be replicated and made available to law enforcement through the State Peace Office Standard Training Board, a division within the Colorado State Attorney’s General Office.
One unique thing about Patty is her drive to see that justice is done and that victims have the protections and rights afforded them by the law. Patty is truly selfless in giving her time and expertise to victims, survivors, victim advocates and justice professionals.
Ann E. Terry
2006 Award HonoreeLegislative Liaison
Colorado Department of Public Safety
Ann serves as the legislative liaison of the Colorado Department of Public Safety, a state agency that includes the Colorado State Patrol, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the Division of Criminal Justice, and the Office of Preparedness, Security and Fire Safety. Ann has been the department’s legislative liaison for more than two years. Prior to her working for a state agency, she was – at the same time – both a deputy district attorney in Jefferson County and the Deputy Director of the Colorado District Attorney’s Council. Ann grew up in Iowa City, Iowa. A graduate of the Drake University School of Law in 1989 and a member of both the Iowa and Colorado bars.
Ann was a prosecutor in Iowa before moving to Denver. Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper appointed Ann to the city’s Ethics Board. She is an instructor at the Colorado State Patrol Academy and teaches classes in ethics, drunk driving prosecution, and sexual assault and crime victims programs to other prosecutors throughout the country.
As an adjunct professor at the University of Denver School of Law, she has taught classes covering criminal procedure and victims in the criminal justice system – the first time victimization was included in a law school curriculum. She has been a member of the Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault board, the Colorado Restorative Justice board and the Sex Assault Nurse Examiners Advisory Board. The State of Colorado is the fortunate recipient of her personal commitment to public safety and justice. The Fields/Wolfe families congratulate Ann on this well deserved honor and award.
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