Who are San Diego’s Community Heroes?

Reality Changers - San Diego Education
The San Diego Foundation Annual Report indicates that nearly $22 million in funding supports education programs from early childhood education and after school programs to college readiness and persistence.

The National Conflict Resolution Center and KPBS recently entered into a partnership with the Malin Burnham Center for Civic Engagement at The San Diego Foundation, Jewish Community Foundation, and Mission Federal Credit Union to recognize Community Heroes in San Diego. This year-long recognition will place a spotlight on individuals that consistently benefit community by fostering collaboration and diversity.

We are so honored to be partners in this initiative which will include media coverage of these inspiring Hero stories, as well as forums to engage communities in conversations related to each Community Heroes topic area. We will be sure to inform you as these opportunities for civic engagement are scheduled.

Which San Diego leaders do you admire for their work in our community?
Share their names in the comments below!

The first topic/award area is racial justice and equality.

The San Diego Foundation believes this is an excellent starting point for selection of a Community Hero. We also know it is going to be difficult to choose just one Hero committed to racial justice and equality. San Diego has so many organizations and individuals working to strengthen our region, and we are encouraged and inspired by them every day.

Working on behalf of our community of engaged and very generous donors, our team participates in meetings, supports collaborations, and monitors progress toward improving quality of life in all our communities.

Racial justice and equality can be manifested in community in many different ways. For example, The San Diego Foundation Annual Report indicates that nearly $22 million in funding supports education programs from early childhood education and after school programs to college readiness and persistence.

We are also honored to facilitate awarding more than $3 million in annual college scholarships awards. In 1848, Horace Mann noted, “Education then, beyond all other devices of human origin, is a great equalizer of the conditions of men — the balance wheel of the social machinery.”

Education then, beyond all other devices of human origin, is a great equalizer of the conditions of men — the balance wheel of the social machinery.”
– Horace Mann

Significant financial support for Health and Human Services is also reflected.

Throughout the region, Heroes advocate for and provide broad and deep services that not only promote wellness in physical and mental health, but also treat illness. Health and human services are intended to create self-sufficiency and improve quality of life, consistent with the mission of The San Diego Foundation.

The World Health Organization recognizes education as an important social determinant of health. College graduates are reported to live five to seven years longer than those that do not complete high school.  And, it has been widely reported that one year of additional education increases lifetime earnings by as much as 10 percent.

Education, then, can be as important to equalizing good health across racial and socio-economics as good nutrition, regular exercise, and doctor visits.

The San Diego Foundation applauds all nonprofit leaders and staff, as well as individual Heroes who are committed to racial justice and equality. Thank you, KPBS and National Conflict Resolution Center for creating this opportunity to honor them.

Learn More About Community Heroes

Which San Diego leaders do you admire for their work in our community? Share their names in the comments below!


About Kathlyn Mead

Kathlyn Mead

President and CEO of The San Diego Foundation, Kathlyn Mead has been actively involved in community throughout her career. National Medical Fellowships honored Kathlyn with its 2015 Leadership in Healthcare award. Charles R. Drew University recognized her commitment to community service with its 2011 Medal of Honor. Mead was named a 2008 Woman of Distinction by the University of Southern California, received San Diego’s 2004 KGTV-10 News Organizational Leadership Award, and is also a 2003 YWCA of San Diego TWIN awardee.

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