The Spirit of Anne Frank Awards recognize worthy students, educators and citizens–bridge builders, peacemakers, innovators and role models–who participate in social and humanitarian programming to engender understanding, equality, and mutual respect among diverse groups.
We are pleased to announce that our 2015 Award Winners are:
Leah and Edward Frankel Scholarship Award
Carolina Dalia Gonzalez
“Anne Frank dealt with isolation in the Secret Annex, just as undocumented youth face isolation in their everyday lives,” wrote Carolina Dalia Gonzalez in her application essay. As the granddaughter of Cuban immigrants, Ms. Gonzalez grew up in Miami with a keen understanding of the challenges and alienation many new arrivals to America face, especially children. This knowledge prompted her to found Deferred Action for Dreamers, whose mission it is to help young, undocumented immigrants in the South Florida community defer deportation and gain employment authorization. To date the organization has helped over 2,000 applicants from the ages of sixteen to thirty-one.
ING Scholarship Award
In the sixth grade, Kiran Sridhar volunteered at a free meals program at a local San Francisco church, an experience that has influenced him every day since. “There were people who looked just like me and who had similar aspirations,” he explains. “Yet, as they told me, hunger was a barrier to achieving their dreams; when they couldn’t guarantee three meals a day, their focus could not be centered on bettering themselves or their community.” Shortly after, Mr. Sridhar founded Waste No More, a nonprofit that connects restaurants, hotels, and caterers to charities. The organization continues to grow years later, releasing its first digital app in January.
Outstanding Student Awards
“My introduction to the Imprint Project was rather sad,” confessed Caitlyn Chang in her application essay. Because of lack of interest and internal conflict, “it was the last meeting of the chapter.” Luckily for the organization – which raises money to free women and girls from sex trafficking – Ms. Chang was not dissuaded. Instead she started the first ever high school chapter of the Project at Bloomington High School South in Indiana. Since its first meeting in August of 2013, the group has had as many as 48 members and raised $3500 through trunk shows, making it the most successful chapter of the Imprint Project to date.
Sydney Nicole Marcus
As a varsity athlete and dancer, Sydney Marcus was often exposed to intolerant language and ideas by her fellow teammates. Inspired by Anne Frank and her own grandmother, she decided to do something about it. First, she became an ambassador for Athlete Ally, an organization of straight athletes that supports LGBTQ individuals in sports. She has also raised money and awareness through dance concerts and by coordinating monthly community meetings at her school called L.E.A.D., which stands for listen, educate, and appreciate difference.
Outstanding Educator Award
Sheri P. Rosenberg – In Memoriam
As the daughter of a Holocaust survivor, Sheri P. Rosenberg was a tireless advocate for the rights of minorities and vulnerable populations, with a special focus on victims-survivors of genocide and mass atrocities. As an Associate Clinical Professor of Law at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, she supervised landmark victories for minority rights toward combating racism, discrimination, and intolerance around the globe. Specifically, Ms. Rosenberg and her students represented clients before the European Court of Human Rights and the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights.