Celebrate with RISE on Monday, October 11 when we honor local leaders in diversity, equity, and inclusion and showcase work that is making a real difference in the San Diego region with the 2021 Inclusive Leadership in Action (ILIA) Awards.
Invest in RISE 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. Download our sponsorship packet, complete the sponsorship form, or email our team with any questions.
2021 ILIA AWARD NOMINATIONS
To make a nomination, please review the category descriptions below, then select the one that best describes your nominee and share why you’re nominating them.
RISE appreciates your nominations of individuals and organizations that demonstrate exceptional commitment to inclusive leadership. We look forward to honoring those whose efforts best exemplify significant, sustainable, and meaningful impact in the lives of San Diego County residents.
The nomination period closes at 11:59 pm PDT on Monday, August 2, 2021. All nominations will be reviewed by a committee of RISE board and staff members. Should you have any questions, please contact RISE at email@example.com.
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 AWARD 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 AWARD
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 It recognizes the effort of guiding groups to face a new challenge, disrupt outdated or harmful norms, and become more reflective and responsive to the needs of the communities they serve.
NEXT-GEN INFLUENCER AWARD (formerly Emerging Leader Award)
Honors an individual between the ages of 16 and 25. It recognizes the voices of young adults who have shown dedication and action within their communities and are growing into their roles as action-driven thought leaders.
RESTORATIVE PRACTITIONER AWARD
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 AWARD
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 (’18) and ILIA award recipient (’19), who founded People’s Legal Services to provide free and low-cost legal support to underserved communities.
ORGANIZATION FOR CHANGE AWARD
Honors an organization that has shown dedication and action to confronting challenges and spearheading opportunities to support and uplift San Diegans in meaningful and impactful ways. It recognizes the efforts of organizations and their teams to deliver exceptional programming and services for the communities they serve.
CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR 2020 ILIA HONOREES
ANTHONY M. MEDINA PEOPLE'S CHAMPION AWARD
Mitchelle 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.
COLLECTIVE RESILIENCE ADVOCATE AWARD
Shamine 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.
NICHOLE 'NIC ROC'ROCERO
COMMUNITY CHANGE AGENT AWARD
Nic Roc 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.
CULTURE SHIFTER AWARD
Nancy'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.
EMERGING LEADER AWARD
Isabel 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.
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.
LEGLER BENBOUGH LEGACY AWARD
Dr. Cordeiro 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.