The deadline to submit nominations for the 2014 Charlie Smith Award is Friday, August 15. The board and staff at Access Press, Minnesota’s disability community newspaper, await your nominations. It is hoped that there will be the usual strong field of candidates to choose from.
The Charlie Smith Award is named in honor of the late Charlie Smith, founding editor of Access Press. He was a well-known Minnesota disability rights advocate. With the support of his family, Smith founded the newspaper in 1990. He died in 2001.
The award is given to an individual or group, in recognition of outstanding service to Minnesota’s disability community. The nominee and finalists are honored in the September issue of Access Press. The winner is celebrated at the annual award banquet, which is Friday, Nov. 7. Pictures and information about all nominees will be displayed at the banquet. That event includes a delicious meal, a silent auction and raffle, speeches and social time at the Minneapolis Airport Marriott 2020 E. American Blvd., Bloomington. Interpretation is offered for guests. The venue offers ample parking and plenty of space for banquet guests to enjoy themselves.
Nominees can be from anywhere in Minnesota. Nominations and questions about the nominations can be sent via email to CSAnominations@testing.accesspress.org via fax to 651-644-2136, or mail to Access Press, c/o Charlie Award Committee, 161 St. Anthony Ave. #910; St. Paul, MN 55103. If possible, send the newspaper office either a jpeg photo or an actual picture of the nominee, or be prepared to tell the editors where a picture can be obtained.
The nomination form is on the Access Press website, at www.testing.accesspress.org and can be downloaded in .pdf and .docx formats. Anyone who needs accommodations to fill out the form or needs the form in another format can call the newspaper office at 651-644-2133.
Reservations can now be made for the Nov. 7 banquet, which starts at 5:30 p.m. with the dinner and ceremony at 7 p.m. Cost is $45 per person for early registration, $50 per person at the door or $325 for an eight-person table. The table rate represents a saving of $35. Registrations can be made online.
Groups that purchase tables can have a sign posted denoting themselves as table hosts.
Checks with the name and number of guests can be mailed to Access Press, Attn: Dawn, 161 St. Anthony Ave. #910, St. Paul, MN 55103. Please make checks payable to Access Press and note “banquet” in the notation line. Credit card transactions can be made over the phone by calling the office at 651-644-2133 and speaking with Dawn Frederick, the newspaper’s business manager.
Access Press is also seeking banquet sponsors and donors for the very popular silent auction and raffle. All types of prizes are needed. Information is available by calling the office or visiting the newspaper’s website.