Difference Makers

Each year, the MLK Celebration Committee awards a few local leaders, businessmen and women, pastors, and other people in the community that are making a difference in Sacramento.

The following are the criteria for the different categories:

Service and Advocacy:  Those who have provided voice to the marginalized.  We encourage nomination for individuals that provide services and/or advocacy for basic human rights or those marginalized by poverty, ethnicity, national origin, gender, or age.

Programs for Children:  Those who stand for children.   We seek nominations for those individuals that invest their resources for the wellbeing of children – our future.  

Innovation for Change:  Those who have the courage to innovate and change the status quo.  We solicit the nomination of individuals that apply innovation and creative approaches for addressing societal issues.  Our aim is to address persistent challenges in the lives of the marginalized.

Historical and Cultural Preservation:  Those who help to preserve history for future generations.  The lessons from the past provide direction for the future; thus, we are seeking nominees whose focus is on preservation of the past as an avenue for community building.

Unity of the Church: Those who have created pathways for bringing the church together as one.  Jesus never approached anyone with caution or suspicion.  We are looking for nominees who have demonstrated a Christ-like approach to ministry by living a life of inclusion and acceptance.

Mentoring and Coaching: Those who are helping others achieve their business and career goals.  We are looking for nominees that are engaged in intentional one-to-one relationships that are designed to empower others to grow and succeed in corporate America.

If you know someone in the greater Sacramento area that is deserving of one of these awards, please FILL OUT THIS FORM to place your nomination. 

Past Recipients

2017:

Christopher Johnson- Innovation for Change

Chief Lee Seale- Innovation for Change

Dr. John Jackson- Service and Advocacy

Amaya Weiss- Service and Advocacy

Jeff Kreiser- Unity of the Church

Jerry Manuel- Programs for Children

Gary Fox- Sherwood Carthen Lifetime Achievement Award

2016:

Leah Albright- Mentoring and Coaching

Michael Blair- Service and Advocacy

Pleshette Robertson- Service and Advocacy

Jenna Abbott- Innovation for Change

Ralph Diaz- Innovation for Change

Spencer Stone and Anthony Sadler- Courage

2015:

Pastor Cole Zick – Innovation for Change

City Councilman Rick Jennings – Service and Advocacy

Reverend Ted Rose – Unity of the Church

Jackie Guzman – Mentoring and Coaching

Doug Britton – Mentoring and Coaching

2014:

Judge Bunmi Awoniyi – Programs for Children

Sam Starks – Historical and Cultural Preservation

Bishop Francis Quinn – Unity of the Church

Chief Sam Somers – Innovation for Change

Raed Awabeh – Service and Advocacy

Ken Cross – Innovation for Change

Leanne Cameron – Service and Advocacy

Judge Stacy Boulware Eurie – Service and Advocacy

2013:

Chief Daniel Hahn – Innovation for Change

Sacramento Ceasefire Task Force – Innovation for Change

Michelle Raby – Service and Advocacy

Ed Manansala – Programs for Children

Scott Syphax – Mentoring and Coaching

CC Yin – Historical and Cultural Preservation

Dr. Bryce Jessup – Lifetime Achievement Award

2011:

Dr. Barbara Smith-Nash

Pastor Glen Cole- Lifetime Achievement Award

Bill Coibion

Jason Harper

Sam Harris

Pastor Scott Hagan

Greg Perkins

Lucy Oback

Susan Coslo

2010:

Debbra Otto Kent – Service and Advocacy

Michelle Karnes and Alton Nelson – Programs for Children

Mindi Russell – Innovation for Change

Anita Johnson and Rob Brown – Mentoring and Coaching

Jeff Johnson – Unity of the Church

Michele Steeb – Difference Maker

Dr. Henry Wells – Lifetime Achievement

2009:

Honorable Troy Nunley

DeWayne Norris

Derrell and Tina Roberts

Kevin Eastway

Pastor Samuel Gordon

Dr. Richard Ikeda

2008:

Chaplain Dan Thompson

Steve Lewis

Laura Reed

James Shelby

Clarence Caesar

Ida Otani

Bishop Sherwood Carthen

Phil Oates

Kevin Johnson

Dr. Ephraim Williams- Lifetime Achievement Award

2007:

Dorothy Montgomery

Kacie Stratton

Jan Schori

Professor Wayne Maeda

Pastor Jim Jessup

Omar Turner

Dr. William Lee