On October 12, 2020, RISE San Diego honored and celebrated local leaders in diversity, equity, and inclusion and showcased work that is making a real difference in the San Diego region with the Inclusive Leadership in Action (ILIA) Awards.


CONGRATULATIONS TO THE 2020 ILIA AWARD HONOREES

MITCHELLE WOODSON, ESQ
ANTHONY M. MEDINA PEOPLE'S CHAMPION AWARD

Mitchelle Woodson, Esq is the executive director of Think Dignity, a nonprofit that provides hands-on advocacy and activism with people who are homeless. An advocate and champion for the rights of unhoused individuals, her impact is felt and seen daily through her efforts to bring dignity to all and ensure each person they reach is provided the resources they need to support their growth and nourish their passions.

Think Dignity websiteThink Dignity on FacebookThink Dignity on Twitter
SHAMINE LINTON
COLLECTIVE RESILIENCE ADVOCATE AWARD

Shamine Linton is the founder of Sharia's Closet, a nonprofit she named after her daughter that is dedicated to providing free clothing to people in need. Since 2013, the organization has served more than 9,500 people in times of crisis, including times of homelessness and natural disasters.

Sharia's Closet's websiteSharia's Closet on FacebookSharia's Closet on Instagram
NICHOLE ROCERO
COMMUNITY CHANGE AGENT AWARD

Nichole 'Nic Roc' Rocero has created a safe space, You Belong Here, that both educates and highlights small business owners, artists, makers, and more in the community. Passionate about social justice, she curates programs, book clubs, and fundraisers to inspire, uplift, and empower the City Heights community and beyond. 

You Belong Here's websiteYou Belong Here on InstagramNichole Rocero on LinkedIn
NANCY MALDONADO
CULTURE SHIFTER AWARD

Nancy Maldonado’s leadership as CEO of the Chicano Federation of San Diego County has been transformative for the organization, allowing it to be at the forefront in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic by continuing to serve the most vulnerable populations with its rapid re-focus on critical community needs. Approaching everything she does with an equity lens, she has started a much-needed cultural shift within San Diego’s nonprofit community with her strong call to action for  organizations to begin shifting their own narratives of how they portray the communities they serve.

Chicano Federation's websiteChicano Federation on FacebookChicano Federation on Twitter
ISABEL VEGAS
EMERGING LEADER AWARD

Isabel Vega is a college student who has taken tremendous initiative to lead the youth in her National City community by teaching gardening education and outdoor science to elementary school-age kids at the weekend Garden Explorers programs at Olivewood Gardens & Learning Center. Through this program, she volunteers her time to expose kids to science themes such as biology, entomology, composting, nutrition, and gardening, helping encourage environmental stewardship and food justice awareness in the next generation.

Olivewood Gardens & Learning Center's websiteOlivewood Gardens & Learning Center on Facebook
MOTHERS WITH A MESSAGE
RESTORATIVE PRACTITIONER AWARD

Mothers with a Message is a group of moms who can be found when someone in our community loses a child to violence: standing with the family behind the yellow tape at their worst time, staying with them through their ups and downs in the days, months, and years to come, and helping them survive a tragedy no one should experience. Together, they also work with prisons where they offer a sixteen-week program to share their stories of loss with inmates who have harmed others, helping them understand and come to terms with the devastating personal impact they have had on their victims and communities.

Mothers with a Message on FacebookMothers with a Message on Instagram
PAULA CORDEIRO, EdD
LEGLER BENBOUGH LEGACY AWARD

Paula Cordeiro, EdD is the Dammeyer Distinguished Professor of Global Leadership and Education at the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies at the University of San Diego (USD). She previously served as dean of the university’s School of Leadership & Education Sciences (SOLES) from 1998 to 2015. Dr. Cordeiro was the first to support RISE San Diego’s vision of creating an urban leadership program six years ago. The partnership that began with her backing and encouragement was critical for the growth and development of what became the RISE Urban Leadership Fellows program, which has since graduated six cohorts of RISE Fellows and branched out to offer leadership development specifically designed with youth (On the RISE), college students (CU RISE), and educators (RISE UPP) in mind.

Dr. Paula Cordeiro at USDDr. Paula Cordeiro on LinkedIn

COLLECTIVE RESILIENCE ADVOCATE

Honors an individual who has shown dedication and action to address and support a community’s ability to come together to combat or resist adverse circumstances. It recognizes the work of fostering adaptation, growth, and resiliency within communities to more readily respond to and recover from problems together.

COMMUNITY CHANGE AGENT
Co-presented with the University of San Diego

Honors an individual who has shown dedication and action to make real, sustainable, and systemic change through the creation of innovative programs, policy, platforms, or partnerships. It recognizes the work of assisting the community’s ability to thrive in areas such as education, social enterprise, health and wellness, or advocacy.

CULTURE SHIFTER

Honors an individual who has shown dedication and action in shifting the culture of organizations and communities alike. It recognizes the effort of guiding groups to face a new challenge, disrupt outdated or harmful norms, and become more reflective and responsive to the needs of the communities they serve.

EMERGING LEADER

Honors an individual between the ages 16-25. It recognizes new young voices who have shown dedication and action within their communities and are growing into their roles as new action-driven thought leaders.

RESTORATIVE PRACTITIONER

Honors an individual who has shown dedication and action in fostering spaces of healing and compassion for others. It recognizes the commitment to restorative practices delivered with grace, empathy, and a strong ethic of care in support of diverse community groups.

THE ANTHONY M. MEDINA PEOPLE’S CHAMPION

Honors an individual who has been an advocate and champion for under-served or marginalized communities. It recognizes advocacy in words and in action to bring about meaningful change for the people. The award is named in honor of the late Anthony M. Medina, a RISE Urban Leadership Fellow and ILIA award recipient, who founded People’s Legal Services to provide free and low-cost legal support to underserved communities.

THE LEGLER BENBOUGH LEGACY AWARD

Honors an individual or organization/group whose commitment to the community is represented in both its deeds and words. It recognizes those that actively and continuously support organizations and community groups leaning into the work of systemic change in communities across San Diego County. The award is named in honor of the Legler Benbough Foundation, which believed in RISE by providing seed funding to grow the organization and has continued to be one of its strongest supporters.


THANK YOU TO OUR 2020 SPONSORS

Invest in RISE San Diego and support our mission to elevate and advance urban leadership through dialogue-based civic engagement, dynamic nonprofit partnerships, and direct training and support to increase the capacity of urban residents to effect meaningful community change. To learn more, please email our team or call 619-531-RISE (7473).