Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Volvo Unveils Sixth Annual Hometown Hero Award Winners

IRVINE, Calif. — Volvo announced the top three winning heroes in the 6th Annual Volvo for life Awards: Marilyn Adams from Iowa for Safety, Oregon's Lorraine Kerwood for environmental care and Minnesota's Matthew Sanford for the Quality of Life category. Each of these heroic individuals displayed courage, innovation and unyielding commitment to their causes and they have touched the lives of thousands of people throughout the United States.

After a tragic farm accident involving her son, Adams founded Farm Safety 4 Just Kids and set out on a mission to promote safe farm environments across the country. Sanford, paralyzed from the chest down, is a nationally recognized yoga teacher, author and founder of Mind Body Solutions, a nonprofit organization dedicated to revolutionizing the rehabilitation process. Kerwood created an electronics recycling and distribution center, NextStep Recycling, which brings refurbished computers to disadvantaged communities and benefits the environment by reducing electronic waste. Now, they will be honored with the country's most prestigious hero awards.

Adams, Kerwood and Sanford each will receive a $100,000 contribution from Volvo to the charity of their choice and will be recognized at the Volvo for life Awards Ceremony at New York City's Cipriani's 42nd Street on March 19. During the ceremony one overall Grand Award winner will be named "America's Greatest Hometown Hero" and will be presented with a new Volvo every three years for the rest of his or her life.

"In our sixth year of the Volvo for life Awards, we once again are in awe of the accomplishments of every one of the heroes that were nominated by the American public. The top 40 semifinalists, the 12 finalists and of course these three amazing people—Marilyn, Lorraine and Matthew—have taken it upon themselves to change and improve our communities," said Anne Bélec, president and chief executive officer for Volvo Cars of North America. "Speaking on behalf of everyone at Volvo, I want to commend and thank all of them. It is our honor to pay tribute to the great and lasting work they are doing."

The Volvo for life Awards, launched in 2002, is the largest-ever national search for and celebration of everyday heroes in the categories of Safety, Quality of Life and Environment. Volvo Cars of North America provides $1 million in awards and contributions in honor of heroes. Since the inception of the program, Volvo has contributed more than $5 million to help hometown heroes continue their extraordinary work in their communities.

Volvo has contributed almost $5 million in funding and awards since 2002 to help everyday heroes with their outstanding work in communities across the United States. Congratulations to all of the finalists.

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