For the first time in two years, the DDCE and the Office of the President hosted the annual Community Leadership Awards ceremony on campus—bringing together students, faculty, staff, alumni and supporters of the university for a night of celebration. Featured below are just a few photo highlights from the big event held on Tuesday, June 7 at the DKR Memorial Stadium. All photos can be found on our Flickr site.
UT Austin President Jay Hartzell and Dr. LaToya Smith, vice president for diversity and community engagement, gave a warm welcome to the crowd, applauding this year’s awardees for going above and beyond to serve the community.
Dr. Ryan Sutton, assistant dean for diversity, equity and inclusion at Dell Medical School, presented the awards, bringing smiles, laughter and applause to the room.
The 2022 Honorees
Helping Hand Home
Helping Hand Home (HHH) provides a safe haven for children healing from physical, emotional and sexual abuse, neglect or abandonment. A longtime partner of the UT Charter School System, HHH’s Residential Treatment Program provides the highest quality of care for children experiencing emotional and behavioral problems so severe that they are unable to remain safe in a home setting. This award recognizes their immeasurable impact on mental health and educational equity in K-12 education.
Founded in 2015, the Kind Clinic has become a leader in providing Texans access to free testing, educational resources and treatment services. A dedicated partner of the Gender and Sexuality Center, the Kind Clinic provides free education health services and STI testing to students on a regular basis. In addition to providing valuable services at no charge, the Kind Clinic creates a friendly and welcoming space where everyone feels safe and supported. This well-deserved award recognizes their significant impact on health equity in higher education, and for their generous contributions to UT Austin’s LGBTQ+ community.
River City Youth Foundation
For more than 36 years, the River City Youth Foundation (RCYF) has been supporting children and their families from the underserved neighborhoods across Austin. Today, they focus on providing programs and services to community members in Dove Springs. Their offerings include youth and family-oriented programs focused on technology training, college and career readiness, mentoring, wellness and community development. The RCYF has partnered with the university and the DDCE on several initiatives and programs including the Longhorns for Equity, Access and Diversity Initiative (LEAD). This award recognizes their support of university-community partnerships, and for their outstanding impact on K-12 education equity.
Silver Spurs Alumni Association
Founded in 1937, the Silver Spurs Alumni Association is the honorary student service organization responsible for the care and transportation of the university’s Longhorn steer mascot BEVO. For more than 20 years, they have been a proud partner of our Neighborhood Longhorns Program (NLP). During the height of the pandemic, the Silver Spurs became a lifeline for the NLP, contributing a significant amount of funding to the program as well as goods and services to schools in vulnerable communities. This award recognizes their generous support for the NLP, and for their significant impact on COVID-19 relief.
Founded in 1927, Texas Hillel works to provide a welcoming and inclusive environment where Jewish students at UT Austin can learn and grow intellectually, socially and spiritually. A longtime partner with the university and the DDCE, Texas Hillel has played an essential role in promoting educational and policy change on campus— leading the way toward positive changes that will benefit Jewish students and all members of the university community. This award recognizes their outstanding service and support for the university’s Jewish community, and for their efforts to advance civil rights on campus and beyond.
Founded in 1896, The University Co-op is a nonprofit that works to serve and meet the needs of UT Austin students. Holding true to its mission to expand access to valuable learning resources, the University Co-op has partnered with several student success programs including the Longhorn Center for Academic Equity’s College to Career (C2C) internship initiative. This award recognizes their efforts to advance equity in higher education, and for their many years of service and dedication to the university.
Special Presentation: LEAD
McCombs School of Business seniors Logan Eggleston (pictured on the right) and Moro Oromo discussed their good work as leaders of the the Longhorns for Equity, Access & Diversity Initiative (LEAD), which gives student-athletes a platform for allocating Texas Athletics funding to nonprofits of their choosing. Read more about it in Eggleston’s Q&A.
Mixing and Mingling
After the ceremony, attendees mixed and mingled while enjoying the view of the stadium from the Longhorn-themed Red Zone.
More about the Community Leadership Awards
Established in 2007, the Community Leadership Awards is hosted every year by the DDCE and the Office of the President to honor organizations and individuals for their service to the greater Austin area. The award recognizes exceptional leadership and commitment to university-community partnerships that seek to bring access and equity to underserved populations.