2nd District Service Awards
Dorothy Rupert High School Service Award
“A powerful way of truly seeing another person is to look into each other’s face and with no words say ‘I am glad you are here. You have every right to be here.’”
- Dorothy Rupert
In 2019, Congressman Joe Neguse established the Dorothy Rupert High School Service Award, to be given annually to the high school student in Colorado’s Second Congressional District who best exhibits commitment to the service of others and dedication to social justice that are the foundation of Dorothy Rupert’s life and career.
Dorothy Rupert was a beloved high school teacher and counselor for 35 years. Dorothy cared deeply for her students and witnessed injustices that she was passionate about addressing, so she followed her conviction and ran for the Colorado State Legislature. Dorothy served for nine years in the state House of Representatives and five years in the state Senate. During her time in office, she worked tirelessly for civil rights for minorities, women, the LGBTQ community, as well as for the well-being of Colorado's children. Dorothy has been a pillar of her community for decades and has inspired and mentored countless young people to pursue social justice and to create a better, more caring and compassionate world.
This January, Congressman Neguse invites high school principals, counselors, and teachers throughout the second congressional district to nominate one student who they believe best exhibits commitment to the service of others and dedication to social justice. Dorothy embodies compassion, empathy, open-mindedness, commitment, sincerity, never-give-up determination, and joy, and we ask that nominees reflects these qualities.
Josie Heath Community Service Award
“In order to lead, you need to be out where people are, listening to them, putting yourself in their shoes, and giving them a voice when they don’t have one.” - Josie Heath
In 2019, Congressman Joe Neguse (CO-2) established the Josie Heath Community Service Award, to be given annually to the community member in Colorado’s Second Congressional District who best exhibits commitment to the service of others, betterment of the community, and dedication to social justice that were the foundation of Josie Heath’s life and career.
Since 1970, Josie Heath has made Colorado history as a community activist, educator and elected official who is committed to improving the quality of life for all who live in Colorado.
Her extensive experience in public service includes more than twenty years (1995-2017) as CEO and President of the Community Foundation - Boulder County and serving for eight years as Boulder County Commissioner (l982-1990). She is the founder of the Mile High Youth Corps and is one of the founders of the Women's Foundation of Colorado. During the Clinton administration she was the Assistant to the Director of the White House Office of National Service and played a key role in the establishment of Americorps.
In the mid-1990s she was a teaching fellow at the Kennedy School of Government and served as a consultant for Harvard University's Project Liberty that provided leadership programs for locally elected officials in Central and Eastern Europe. She was the Colorado Democratic 1990 and 1992 candidate for the United States Senate. Josie has been the recipient of many local and national service awards, including being inducted into the Colorado Women's Hall of Fame." She is currently a Commissioner for the Colorado State Land Board.
Every December, Congressman Neguse invites community members throughout the second congressional district to nominate one person who they believe best exhibits commitment to the service of others, betterment of the community, and dedication to social justice. Josie Heath embodies compassion, empathy, open-mindedness, commitment, sincerity, never-give-up determination, and joy - we ask that community members nominate a person who reflects these qualities.
The Mollie H. Beattie Congressional Award for Distinguished Environmental Scholarship
“As environmental scientists and policy leaders we must ask ourselves, ‘What have I done that actually helped the balance of ecosystems and preserved and protected all species – including our own?’” – Mollie H. Beattie
In 2020, Congressman Joe Neguse established the Mollie H. Beattie Congressional Award for Distinguished Environmental Scholarship to be presented annually to college students within Colorado’s Second Congressional District, whose clear passion, scholastic excellence, and desire to serve and impact their fields of studies display the potential for environmental vision and leadership exemplified by the late Mollie H. Beattie, director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under President Bill Clinton.
Mollie Beattie’s path toward environmental leadership did not follow a straight line, but it was driven by a lifelong relationship with the natural world, early and growing concern for the health of habitats and ecosystems, and her unique ability to articulate the risks and complexities of environmental issues in passionate and understandable terms, whether to landowners and farmers in Vermont - or Congressmen and Senators in Washington, DC. Her many accomplishments at each stage in her career stem from the same traits: a clear and informed science-based understanding of the issues; an ability to listen and discuss differences with compassion; a dedication to truth and honesty; the courage to stand by her convictions in the face of political heat; and her deep, deep sense that by speaking up to protect wildlife habitat and wilderness – she was speaking on behalf of all the wild species who had no voice.
Mollie’s path became the clearest as a young woman in Colorado – where she was an Outward Bound instructor based in Leadville for many years. Along the way she studied forestry, biology, and wildlife habitat and became one of only a few female foresters in New England. She served in Vermont State government as director of Forests, Parks, and Recreation; received a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government; and ultimately was appointed by President Clinton, and confirmed by the Senate, to become the first woman to serve as director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service overseeing thousands of USFWS employees, hundreds of National Wildlife Refuges, and notably – administering the Endangered Species Act. One of her most rewarding efforts as USFWS director was the successful reintroduction of gray wolves to Yellowstone National Park in 1995. After a year-long battle with cancer, Mollie died in 1996 at the age of 49.