The awards program was established in 2008 by the Jewish Community Center to honor people who have demonstrated an exemplary spirit of humanity and inspire the pursuit of humanitarian goals, such as promoting human welfare, care and compassion, social reform, philanthropy, and values-based investing in the community, said JCC executive director David Simon.
“From affordable housing advocates to entrepreneurial job creators to global advocates for cross-cultural understanding, this is a fantastic group of New Mexicans who deserve our recognition and thanks,” said Simon. “They have made New Mexico, and the world, a better place through their humanitarian efforts.”
A major sponsor of this year’s awards program is Dreamstyle Remodeling, which became involved “because it is so important to recognize members of our community who make giving back a priority in their lives,” said company CEO Larry Chavez.
This year’s recipients are:
Rick Davis, CEO of R.E. Davis & Companies, and a residential and commercial builder for 40 years. Among his projects are Jefferson Green, the first LEED Gold commercial building in New Mexico.
For the past 25 years, Davis has been the executive director of the Family Housing Development Corporation, a nonprofit that provides affordable home ownership to working families.
Under Davis’ leadership, the FHDC has built more than 350 affordable homes for working families.
Alice Loy, the 2015 recipient of the “Common Good Investing Humanitarian Award,” which specifically recognizes exemplary leadership in socially responsible investing that supports humanitarian purposes.
Bank of America/Merrill Lynch sponsors this award, which was established in 2013.
Loy is the co-founder of Creative Startups and a principal at the Global Center for Cultural Entrepreneurship.
Working in the American Southwest and around the globe, Loy has led the creation of award-winning programs that have helped entrepreneurs develop technical and leadership skills, gain access to mentoring and capital, and enter markets to scale up their business enterprises.
Sarah Wilkinson, the founder of Global One to One, formerly Project PeacePal, a nonprofit she started in 2007 that cultivates cross-cultural understanding and communication between students around the world.
Over the past eight years, nearly 14,000 students in 25 countries have participated in the program.
Wilkinson’s vision throughout this nearly decade-long effort has been to build a network of people who better understand each other and who can therefore better solve global issues together.
She has been a strong, compassionate leader who has, as a New Mexican, become a “global humanitarian,” influencing lives and communities all over the world, said Simon.
Stu Simon and the Storehouse Annex Food Pantry Volunteers, who have for more than seven years maintained the food pantry at the David Spector Shalom House adjacent to the Jewish Community Center.
Each month, the team serves more than 300 clients and distributes nearly 5,000 pounds of food.
Led by Simon, the team also includes Rosalie Simon, Alvin Zuckert, Louise Martin, Bob Zucker, Catherine Towers, Evie Zlotkin, Jeri Horwitz, Leah Wilson and Peter Bernstein.
Their consistent and selfless effort to help others has had a positive impact on some of the community’s neediest families, said David Simon.
Alan and Diane Chodorow, the recipients of the 2015 Harold B. Albert Community Service Award, which recognizes those whose service to the Jewish community reflects the highest integrity, love for others and commitment to the ideals of Jewish life.
The award is named for Harold Albert, who spearheaded the establishment of the JCC.
The Chodorows are among 250 charter members of the JCC.
Diane has been active in Jewish education and music, and co-founded the DVora Project, which educates people about domestic violence.
The couple has volunteered for many causes, and has served on the board of the Jewish Federation, JCC, Congregation B’nai Israel and Jewish Community Fund of New Mexico.
The Chodorows have also modeled the Jewish value of “Tzedakah,” or charity and good works, with generous philanthropic commitments to such organizations as the JCC, Jewish Federation, Solomon Schechter Day School, Chavurah Hamidbar and Congregation B’nai Israel.