Honoring individuals who make a difference in the lives of children.

About Bright Promises' Awards

Each year, Bright Promises Foundation presents awards to individuals in our communities who deeply embody our mission to create opportunities for every child to thrive.

These awards are presented each year during a community celebration hosted by the Bright Promises Foundation Board of Directors. This is a fun and casual event, celebrating a distinguished individuals and organizations who deserve special recognition for their dedication to the children of Chicago. 

More than just a great party with great people, the proceeds from our annual Awards celebration provides critically important funds to support groundbreaking programs that serve the most economically disadvantaged children in Chicago. 

Awards Descriptions

The Champion for Children Award recognizes the outstanding contributions of a civic or community leader who demonstrates exemplary commitment to children and has helped to advance the mission of Bright Promises Foundation. This award is presented to an individual that has shown exceptional dedication in their support for at-risk children, and whose commitment and belief in building a better future for Chicago kids helps the child-serving community attain new levels of success.

Past Champion for Children honorees include Doug Mabie (2018), Thomas Hale (2017) and Gigi Pritzker (2016).

The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a professional in children's services who has made 10+ years of outstanding contributions to the welfare of children and to programs benefiting disadvantaged children. This award is given to an exemplary leader whose actions, achievements and service to children stand as a model to others.

Past honorees include Nancy Ronquillo (2018), Dr. Linda Gilkerson (2017), Ron Manderschied (2016), Alex Kotlowitz (2015), Bryan Samuels (2014), Marjorie Craig Benton (2013), Prudence Beidler (2012), Dr. Katherine Kaufer Christoffel (2011), Dr. Barbara Bowman (2010), Bernice Weissbourd (2009), Jerome Stermer (2008), Dr. Joseph DiCara (2007), Mark Duhon (2006), John Horan (2005)

The Bright Star Award is given to an individual who shows great motivation, enthusiasm and promise in exemplifying our mission to benefit disadvantaged children in Illinois.  The Bright Star Award is accompanied by an honorarium of $5,000. This honorarium is to be used to further the recipient’s knowledge about and work on behalf of vulnerable children.

Past Bright Star Award honorees include Marco Dodd (2018), Anthony Vincent Clark (2017), Maria Munoz (2016), Dominica McBride (2015), Scheherazade Tillet (2014), Eduardo Bocanegra (2013), Mariame Kaba (2013), Sarah Elizabeth Ippel (2012), Casey Holtschneider (2011), Angela Devore (2009), and Khalila Worley (2009).

The Bright Star Award was created in memory of Ed Marciniak, who served on the Board of Bright Promises Foundation from 1955 until his death in 2004. The Bright Star Award focuses Marciniak’s interest in reaching out to individuals early in their career and encouraging them to stay involved in the lives of children.

Submit a Nomination

Do you know someone worthy of recognition for their work on behalf of children?
Submit a nomination for the 2020 Awards via the online form below.
Online Nomination Form: