Past recipients of this award:
2015 - Karen Rudys
In the summer of 2015, Karen Rudys as APS Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources discovered a new APS Deputy Superintendent had been hired by his friend the then APS Superintendent without the proper background checks and fingerprinting. Ms. Rudys repeatedly contacted the new deputy in June, July and August asking him to comply, which he did not. She also kept her boss--- the APS Superintendent--- apprised of the situation. Had the new deputy complied or the superintendent backed her requests, the APS board would have avoided another scandal when it was learned the new deputy was to stand trial in another state for alleged child molestation and was on probation and not allowed to leave that state. Even under threat of reprisals, Ms. Rudys stood up for her employees, tenaciously held her ground and told the truth. That truth being the superintendent did know his new deputy had refused to comply with the APS hiring policies. The new deputy resigned and the superintendent was fired. Karen Rudys kept her job.
2013 - Ona Porter and Miriam Rand have set an example of community care in their chosen professional fields. Ona is the founder, CEO and President of Prosperity Works. Miriam is the Director of Adoptions for Family Matters. Ona and Miriam received their Giraffe Award for their courageous stand on marriage equality. They have been partners for over 25 years. When denied a marriage license in February, 2013, they filed a lawsuit, which they won on August 26, 2013 claiming the current ban on same-sex civil marriage violates the New Mexico Constitution and equal rights for all.
2012 - Anne Marie Wallace, MD
Dr. Wallace did her specialty training in breast surgery at Stanford University Medical Center where she was selected as the 2003-2004 Susan G. Komen Breast Multidisciplinary Fellow. She came to UNM Health Sciences in the fall of 2004 to serve as the Associate Director of the Breast Multidisciplinary Program at the Cancer Center where she practiced as a breast cancer surgeon and clinical researcher until August 2010 when she was dismissed from her position after raising concerns regarding quality of patient care by her superiors.
2011 - Grace Watson Williams
Grace was the Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico from 1975 to 1993, and was also a founding member of the organization.
2010 - Hon. Gene E. Franchini (1935-2009)
New Mexico Supreme Court Justice. His generosity to NM youth is legendary both as a mentor to young lawyers and as the major force behind the NM Mock Trail competition.
2009 - Michael L. "Mikey" Weinstein founder of the Military Religous Freedom Foundation working to ensure religious freedom to all members of the U.S. Armed Forces.
2008 - Valerie Plame & Joe Wilson stuck their necks out to seek justice and to provide truth to the American people.
2007 - Emily (Cheromiah) Hunt-Dailey took a stand for women's equality in the Laguna tribe by securing a place for women in tribal government.
2006 - Laura Berg battled for the right of a government employee to express their personal opinions of the government.
2005 - Captain Marie Miranda, of the Albuquerque Police Department for her work to improve conditions in the APD evidence room
2004- Judy Bierbaum, a longtime activist and children’s sexual abuse counselor.