The Ford Foundation announced this week that Boise and Moscow's own United Vision for Idaho is one of 29 national finalists for the Leadership for a Changing World Award program. Out of the 29 finalists, UVI was one of only six nominated as an entire organization, rather than an individual member.
For those unfamiliar with their expansive work, United Vision is somewhat of a meta-advocacy group, tying together 23 smaller grassroots organizations with an astonishing range of goals and members. Where else could you find both Church Women United and the gay and lesbian advocates Your Family Friends and Neighbors? Or the Idaho Conservation League and the AFL-CIO? But aside from these disparate affiliates (a complete list is available at www.uvidaho.org), UVI's own program staff-including director Roger Sherman, Judy Brown of the Idaho Center on Budget and Tax Policy, Lucinda Hormel of the Idaho Working Group for Fair Elections and Don Schwietzer of the Idaho Center on Democracy and Open Government-still spearhead numerous agendas on their own. Most recently, Hormel has been leading Idahoans United To Protect Social Security, an anti-privatization initiative that recently met with Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo to discuss Social Security Policy (see: BW, News, "Privatization, Take 2," June 29, 2005).
The 17 winners of the national award will receive $100,000 each to advance their work and an additional $15,000 for supporting activities. The winners will be announced on October 13.