Community Update

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Offer: Call for Nominations, Petra Fellows (for unsung individuals making distinctive contributions to the rights, autonomy and dignity of others)

The Petra Foundation was established in 1988 to sustain the trajectory of Petra Tölle Shattuck's life by honoring the kind of people she most admired—unsung individuals making distinctive contributions to the rights, autonomy and dignity of others.

Each year since then, through a national search and nomination process, the Petra Foundation has recognized such leaders as Petra Fellows.

Often at risk and without the safety net of personal privilege or institutional support, Petra Fellows fight poverty, discrimination, environmental degradation and violence. They work in prisons and police departments, factories and migrant worker camps, health clinics, housing projects, family farms and public schools—wherever people lack the resources, connections or clout to participate fully in American society. Armed with the fierce passion for justice that inspired Petra Shattuck, they are fixing what's broken in America.

Recognizing the catalytic effect of engaging emerging and experienced leaders on an on-going basis, the foundation sustains its commitment to the Petra Fellows, hosting their participation in national and local gatherings to share strategies and make common cause and marshalling the professional and personal resources of citizen-activists to support fellows in their work. The resulting collaborations continue to multiply and bear fruit.

Petra Fellows encourage others to make a difference in their own communities. Not one of the fellows has stopped working or growing. Many have gone on to receive wider recognition and their local successes have become models of regional and national significance.

Over two decades the Petra Foundation—an all-volunteer, publicly supported 501(c)(3) with one paid staff director—has built a national network of leaders working across the divides of age, ethnicity, class and issue to build a more just society.

Nomination Guidelines

Individuals nominated for a Petra Foundation Award should display a combination of activism and thought, force of character, independence of judgment, and clarity of expression.
The nominee's activities should be devoted either to the cause of racial equality, with special emphasis on Native Americans and people of color; or to the autonomy of persons, groups, families, and communities; or to freedom of speech, expression, and thought.
The nominee should be someone who is not widely recognized, who does not have personal privilege or a strong institutional base of support and who has demonstrated a capacity to grow, overcome obstacles and make a significant contribution to human freedom by leading, teaching, or otherwise helping others.
Please note that nominations should be submitted without the knowledge of the nominees. They will be carefully researched based in part on the references provided with the nomination materials.
Most Petra Fellows work in the United States. If you are considering a foreign nominee, please contact us before submitting the nomination.

Please complete the form by February 20, 2012

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