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VOTE FOR COLORADO’S GREATEST HOMETOWN HEROES

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

National vote underway for all-time greatest heroes – five per state - in 5th Anniversary Volvo for life Awards

 

Vote for top heroes at www.volvoforlifeawards.com; $1 million in financial contributions provided; winner receives Volvo car for life

 

IRVINE, Calif. (August 28, 2006) – Five extraordinary, everyday heroes from Colorado have been named semi-finalists in the 5th Annual Volvo for life Awards. Volvo is calling on the citizens of Colorado and people coast-to-coast to visit www.volvoforlifeawards.com now through Feb. 4, 2007 to view the 250 semi-finalist stories – five per state – and vote for the individual they feel is “America’s Greatest Hometown Hero.” The overall grand winner will receive a $50,000 charitable contribution and a new Volvo every three years for the rest of his or her life.

 

Who in Colorado would you give a Volvo to? Representing Colorado in this year’s Volvo for life Awards are:

  • Ellen Blair, of Golden, has helped improve the quality of life of thousands of children by founding “Kids’ Pages Cares”, an innovative non-profit that assists underserved, disadvantaged and neglected children Denver’s suburbs. Via Kids’ Pages Cares Magazine, Blair leverages free or reduced-cost services and goods from the publication’s advertisers, enticing profit-driven businesses to participate in philanthropy. The magazine reaches about 75,000 families and in 2004 it assisted more than 1100 children by providing clothing, pediatric services, kindergarten tuition, along with other goods and services.
  • Dawn Engle, of Arvada, created “PeaceJam,” an organization that brings together at-risk youth and Nobel Peace Prize laureates in life-transforming ways during a series of seminars, community-service projects and events. The program not only reaches out to Denver’s disaffected youth, but also young people throughout the U.S. and the world. Since PeaceJam began in 1996, nearly 200,000 teenagers have participated, helping to complete over 140,000 community service projects.
  • Jennifer Heath, a Boulder-based writer, gardener and environmentalist, started “Seeds for Afghanistan” in her living room to deliver seeds to poverty-stricken Afghan widows and farmers. By March 2003, 200,000 packages of seeds had been delivered to people in Kabul and surrounding rural areas. Heath began this project with nothing but a deep desire to make a direct and positive impact on the lives of the starving Afghan people.
  • Lynn Price, of Highland Ranch, has reunited siblings separated by foster care through an organization “Camp To Belong.” In addition to providing a service for these children, Price runs a hotline that many of the campers use as a safe haven to call for advice. The hotline is available to both past and present campers.
  • Brandee Voit, of Golden, hosts a "Ride for Life" during the summer to encourage people to talk about suicide and its aftermath without shame or fear. In July 2004, 180 motorcycle riders and over 400 people attended her “Ride For Life” event to raise funds for the Yellow Ribbon Suicide Prevention Program, which is a worldwide, non-profit organization.

 

Now through Feb. 4, individuals will be able to view these and other hero stories and vote for their top heroes at www.volvoforlifeawards.com. For one week only, Sept. 11- Sept. 17, the five Colorado heroes’ stories will be featured on the front page of the www.volvoforlifeawards.com Web site, joining five heroes from Texas. Each week during the voting period, heroes from two states will be featured heroes on the front of the Web site, though individuals can view and vote on their state or any other state’s hero stories within the site at any time.

 

Once the public vote concludes, the top three vote getters in the categories of safety, quality of life and environment will be named finalists. Then, a panel of distinguished judges – including Hank Aaron, Sen. Bill Bradley, Caroline Kennedy, Maya Lin, Paul Newman, Dr. Sally Ride, Val Kilmer, Eunice Kennedy Shriver and previous Volvo for life Awards top winners – will select winners in each category. Winners receive a $50,000 charitable contribution from Volvo; remaining finalists receive a $25,000 contribution.

 

On April 4, 2007, Volvo will fly the winning heroes to New York, where Volvo and members of the celebrity-judging panel will honor them at the 5th Annual Volvo for life Awards Ceremony. At the climax of the ceremony, Volvo will reveal which of the three top heroes is also the Grand Award winner of a Volvo vehicle every three years for the rest of his or her life.

 

“Over the past five years the Volvo for life Awards initiative has received more than 15,000 hero nominations,” said Anne Bélec, president and chief executive officer of Volvo Cars of North America. “All of these heroes demonstrate incredible conscience, care and character. We felt the proper way to mark the fifth year of the Volvo for life Awards would be to highlight the top five heroes from every state in America. Having the public help us select the winning heroes is a truly exciting – and democratic – addition to this year’s program. We look forward to discovering just who ‘America’s greatest hometown hero’ will be.”

 

To learn more, or to vote for your favorite hero, visit www.volvoforlifeawards.com. A Spanish version of the site can also be accessed at this address.

 

# # #

Contact:

Alex Seitz,

Haberman & Associates,

612-372-6471,

alex@habermaninc.com

 

Sören Johansson,

Volvo Cars of North America,

949-341-6719,

sjohan44@volvocars.com

Media:

For photos and more information on the Volvo for life Awards visit:

www.volvocars-pr.com

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