The Heinz Awards Review - Summer 2009

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The Heinz Awards pay tribute to the memory of H. John Heinz III by celebrating those who embrace, as he did, the joyous American belief that individuals have both the power and responsibility to change the world for the better.

As a reminder of the virtues of hard work, determination, excellence and a broad vision for the future, the Heinz Family Foundation annually recognizes a special group of individuals for their outstanding contributions.

about the heinz
family foundation

teresa heinz

jeffrey r. lewis

kim o’dell
director, heinz awards

carole smith
heinz awards review

photographs by
jonathan greene
james harrison
michael duncan
castillo theater
nihf foundation
aaron igler


Many of you have shared 14 remarkable years of the Heinz Awards with me and together we have marveled at the stories of innovation, creativity and generosity that define the 72 individuals who have earned our praise. When we created the program to honor the memory and spirit of my late husband, U.S. Senator John Heinz (Jack to his friends and John to his colleagues), we selected five categories that especially reflected his areas of interest: Arts and Humanities, Environment, Human Condition, Public Policy and Technology, the Economy and Employment.

Approaching the milestone of our 15th year, we decided to dedicate the Heinz Awards this year to a single focus: Jack’s long-standing commitment to the environment. At this unique time in our history, when the environment is even more important to our lives, our economy, our national security and our future than ever, it is only fitting that we focus on this critical topic. My goal is simple – to celebrate those guardians of our future who value the importance of our natural resources, who work to remove toxic chemicals from our air and water, who are concerned about the health of all of our citizens and who are creating the policies and the technologies that will ensure a totally sustainable planet for future generations.

I am pleased to report that our Board of Directors recently identified 10 men and women whose lives fulfill this pledge. Please look for our announcement in September when we will introduce this very special class of recipients, extraordinary people whose stories will inspire a new generation of thinkers, doers and leaders.

Geoffrey Canada

Geoffrey Canada’s effort to transform the lives of nearly 11,000 children in Harlem is being recognized with the prestigious John H. Gardner Leadership Award. As president and CEO of Harlem Children’s Zone, Mr. Canada’s innovative approach to providing a comprehensive service model for inner city families has caught the attention of policymakers across the country. The award will be presented at the 2009 Independent Sector Annual Conference in Detroit in November.

The Harlem Children’s Zone has provided children and adults in an area now 100 blocks wide with educational, social and medical needs. Mr. Canada, 1st Human Condition Heinz Award, has overseen the program since 1990. The award is named after John Gardner, an advisor to six presidents on issues of education and public policy and founding chair of Independent Sector. Independent Sector represents more than 600 organizations in both the corporate and non-profit communities that serve to strengthen the charitable community through leadership activities.

Amory Lovins

As part of the celebration surrounding the 10th Annual Cooper-Hewitt National Design Awards, inventor Amory Lovins participated in a forum on the future of technology and sustainability. He is the recipient of the Design Mind award and he joined several other honorees as they held a series of free, public events around the Mall in Washington D.C. in July. Mr. Lovins, 4th Environment Heinz Award, has been on the forefront of issues relating to energy and the environment for more than 40 years. As co-founder of the Rocky Mountain Institute, a non-profit “think and do tank” that seeks innovative, sustainable energy options for various organizations, he has briefed 19 heads of state on energy issues and consulted with numerous corporations and other entities on energy reduction. The National Design Awards honor outstanding contributions from the design world, including architecture, fashion, lifetime achievement, and sustainable design solutions.

Mr. Lovins is also the featured speaker at the Second Annual Heinz Talks in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, Oct. 27. The Heinz Talks are a series of issue-based forums featuring Heinz Awards recipients. Time and location will follow by email notification.

Millie Dresselhaus

Mildred Dresselhaus received the 2009 Vannevar Bush Award to recognize her many contributions to the field of science and technology. Dr. Dresselhaus, 11th Technology, the Economy and Employment Heinz Award, was the first woman to receive the high distinction of institute professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology where she has researched and mentored students for 40 years. The National Science Foundation, which administers the award, said it selected Dr. Dresselhaus for her leadership through public service in science and engineering, her perseverance and advocacy in increasing opportunities for women in science and for her many contributions in the field of condensed-matter physics and nanoscience. Coincidentally, her office is located in the Vannevar Bush Building on the MIT campus and she said in remarks at the spring presentation ceremony that she is inspired passing his portrait every morning as she arrives at work.

Dudley Cocke

The Roadside Theater, under the direction of Dudley Cocke, was recently honored with an Otto Reneé Castillo Award to recognize its long commitment to illuminating the stories of the Appalachian region. Mr. Cocke is co-recipient of the 8th Arts and Humanities Heinz Award. Roadside Theater approaches stage work as an extension of traditional storytelling; through workshops it encourages people to tell their stories and incorporates song and dance as a means of expression along with dialogue and prose. Based on the belief that cultural development is as important as economic development, Roadside conducts artist residencies throughout the country to help people in other regions stage their stories.

The Otto Awards are named after the Guatemalan poet and recognizes the achievement of individuals and theater companies who conceive, produce and foster development of innovative and socially challenging theater. Mr. Cocke accepted the award at a ceremony in New York City this spring.

Andrew Grove

Andy Grove was recently honored with a lifetime achievement award from the National Inventors Hall of Fame for his multiple breakthrough contributions. His work with Intel, and the emergence of the personal computer through his work on the microprocessor chip, was especially noted by the induction committee. The awards committee said that with Dr. Grove at its helm, Intel “dramatically contributed to the power, utility, and ubiquity of computing devices.” Dr. Grove, 1st Technology, the Economy and Employment Heinz Award, co-founded Intel in 1968 and served as its CEO and as a member of its board at various times. Currently he is a senior advisor. The National Inventors Hall of Fame is headquartered in Akron, Ohio and serves to honor and foster creativity and invention.

Bruce Katz

The Penn Institute for Urban Research recently honored Bruce Katz of the Brookings Institution as an exemplary leader. Mr. Katz, 12th Public Policy Heinz Award, is the founding director and vice president of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program which studies the challenges facing cities and metropolitan areas. He is currently on leave to serve as a senior advisor to the secretary of housing and urban development. Mr. Katz was honored at the 5th Annual Urban Leadership Forum, Building and Sustainable Cities, at the University of Pennsylvania. The Penn Institute conducts urban-focused research and fosters civic engagement to promote a better understanding of cities.