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Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award Finalists Announced
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) – The NASCAR Foundation announced today the four finalists for the 2013 Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award. Finalists Duncan Dobie, Lisa Hall, Don Post and Richard Johnson each will receive a minimum $25,000 donation for the charity of their choice from The NASCAR Foundation, with the national winner being awarded $100,000. Each finalist will also receive one VIP at-track NASCAR experience during the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup at Kansas Speedway, Talladega Superspeedway, Martinsville Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway.
The award honors the unwavering commitment that The NASCAR Foundation Chairwoman Betty Jane France has demonstrated with her philanthropic and community efforts. The award is given annually to one dedicated NASCAR fan who has made a profound impact on children in his or her local community.
“These finalists truly demonstrate the generosity, compassion and commitment that embody the spirit of the award,” said France. “All four finalists have a remarkable story regarding their own philanthropic efforts in their respective communities, and share the extraordinary traits that are so prevalent throughout NASCAR’s fan base.”
NASCAR fans, friends and families are encouraged to vote for one of the four finalists by logging on to www.NASCAR.com/award between now and midnight ET on Dec. 5. Fans are also encouraged to join the conversation on Facebook at facebook.com/NASCARFoundation and Twitter using the hashtag #BJFHAward. The finalist with the most votes will be announced as the national winner live on stage during the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Awards at Wynn Las Vegas on Dec. 6. The winner also will receive a 2014 Chevrolet SS from Chevrolet. Chevrolet is the official car sponsor of this year’s Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award.
The four finalists:
Duncan Dobie (Marietta, Ga.) has assisted more than 12,000 children with cancer over the past 30 years as a teacher, mentor and motivational figure at Camp Sunshine. After his daughter was diagnosed with leukemia at a young age, Dobie set out on a path to share his gifts of love, patience, acceptance and hope with other children battling cancer. He has served Camp Sunshine in many capacities, including counselor, photographer, swimming instructor, lifeguard and supervisor on fishing, rafting and snow-skiing trips.
Lisa Hall (Bedford, N.H.) has served over the past 10 years as a court appointed special advocate (CASA). CASA volunteers support children who are in the court system and often times removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect. As a CASA volunteer, Hall advocates for a child’s best interest in court and the community, and participates in continuing education courses related to courtroom procedures, social service, the juvenile justice system and the special needs of abused and neglected children. For many abused children, their CASA volunteer will be the one constant adult presence in their lives. Volunteers like Hall typically spend an average of 1.5 years working with and serving their children until they are in a safe and permanent home.
Don Post (Kansas City, Mo.) was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as "Lou Gehrig's Disease," in 1980 and was told he only had three to five years to live. He retired from his professional job and embarked on a 33-year mission of donating his time and talent to charities in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Post has been a volunteer for the March of Dimes "Bikers for Babies" motorcycle ride for 18 years and committee chairman since 2010. His leadership has been instrumental in making this event the No. 1 charity ride in the nation, helping to raise $6.8 million for March of Dimes. His humility is matched by his wisdom, sense of humor, and desire to help the tiniest and most helpless of all. Post has received a number of volunteer service awards from multiple non-profit organizations in recognition of his dedication and loyalty. He spends most of his days organizing volunteers for the annual "March for Babies" and "Bikers for Babies" events.
Richard Johnson (St. Johns, Fla.) has more than five years of experience working with charities to organize events and fundraise for children with Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency. A tireless advocate in raising awareness and funds to get desperately needed help for children with Alpha-1, Johnson has organized and hosted an annual “Friends for a Cure Golf Tournament” in which the proceeds benefited Alpha-1 Foundation research programs. To set an example for others and reinforce the importance of family testing, Richard helped launch the Alpha-1 Foundation’s “It’s All in The Family” campaign by creating a video testimonial with his two children, who were diagnosed with the genetic condition in 2008. He has also been active in the Alpha-1 Kids program by developing educational materials and supporting parents with children who have recently been diagnosed.