Leadership Awards


Please contact the California Democracy program if you have questions about the awards.

1.866.586.6465 (toll-free)

Congratulations to the 2014 Leadership Award Recipients Print E-mail
Susan Burton Susan Burton

A New Way of Life Reentry Project, Los Angeles

J. Eugene Grigsby III and Paul Leon J. Eugene Grigsby III and Paul Leon

National Health Foundation and Illumination Foundation, Los Angeles

Eloy Ortiz Oakley Eloy Ortiz Oakley

Long Beach City College,
Long Beach

Mari Riddle Mari Riddle

Centro Latino for Literacy, Los Angeles

Meet nine extraordinary Californians who are successfully addressing some of the state’s most critical challenges. As recipients of the 2014 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards, each leader or leadership team will receive $125,000 to support their work benefiting the people of California.

This year's award recipients are helping to improve the lives of thousands of Californians every day. Whether it is improving academic achievement and health or reducing recidivism, these individuals are improving the lives of thousands of Californians through strategies that are responsive, collaborative and forward-looking.

"These leaders have found effective solutions to some of California's most difficult problems," said Don Howard, Interim President and CEO of the James Irvine Foundation. "They do this by listening to the people they serve, working with the community, maximizing every dollar they use, and then sharing what they learn."Please join us in honoring and celebrating these inspiring leaders. Our aim is to shine a spotlight on their success, so that their proven solutions can inform state policymaking and better the lives of more Californians. We want to encourage others to help grow and replicate their models for an even greater impact on our state.

About the Awards

Now in its ninth year, the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards recognize and support individuals who are advancing innovative and effective solutions to significant state issues. Nominees may be working in any field — such as education, health, housing, economic development or the environment — in the public, private or nonprofit sector.

Since the program was launched, we have recognized 51 recipients, including both individuals and groups.

Nominate a Leader

Nominations for the 2015 awards are now closed.

The Foundation provides each award recipient with $125,000 to support his or her work to benefit the people of California. At least $100,000 is designated for core support of the leader’s project or organization, and up to $25,000 may be used for professional or organizational development activities. The Foundation also assists recipients in sharing their promising approaches with policymakers and practitioners.

Learn more About the Awards.