Nominate Someone for an African-American Achiever’s Award

Nominate Someone for an African-American Achiever's Award

African-American Achievers Award with Calvin Hughes, Local 10 Anchor and event emcee; Adrian Frances, winner of the Jerome Edmund Gray Youth Achiever award; Michael Hartline, Dean of Students, Florida State University’s College of Business; and Kim Bentley, assistant vice president of Corporate Philanthropy, JM Family Enterprises.

By: Jill Fox

If someone is making a positive difference in the South Florida community, the JM Family wants to hear about it. They are on the lookout for inspirational African-American nominees who have set an example through community involvement and leadership in the tri-county area.

Since its inception, JM Family has donated more than $600,000 on behalf of 156 individual African-American Achievers and from now until November 30, JM Family Enterprises, Southeast Toyota Distributors and JM Lexus are accepting nominations for the 27th annual African-American Achievers awards in each of four categories: Arts & Culture; Business & Entrepreneurism; Community Service; and Education.

“Nominations are rolling in now, and we’re really excited to go through this year’s choices and pick four amazing honorees,” said JM Family Enterprises Public Relations Manager, Christie Caliendo.

To nominate someone, tell a good story about what this person is doing and give good examples about why the individual you are nominating is such an outstanding contributor to the community and what he or she has done. Make sure to include how the candidate improves the lives of others, invests their talents and motivates future generations.

Lynne Martzall, Media Relations Coordinator for Coral Springs said the city has enjoyed a tremendous working relationship with JM Family Enterprises over the past decade. One example is the Martin Luther King Jr. Golf Tournament which has benefitted from their generous contributions and provides scholarships to students graduating from local Coral Springs High Schools.

Jim Moran, automotive pioneer and founder of JM Family established the African-American Achievers awards program which annually recognizes leaders for their exceptional contributions toward building stronger communities in South Florida.

“Mr. Moran started this program 27 years ago and we want to continue his vision of honoring unsung heroes in our community,” said Caliendo. “He wanted to shine a light on people who unselfishly make a difference, and not the same people who you see recognized everywhere else.”

Each person whose nominee is chosen will receive an invitation to attend a private reception at the Broward County Convention Center. The commemorative ceremony on April 24 will recognize four inspirational people in each of the four categories. Judges are made up of past achievers as well as some media partners from the event.

One past award winner in community involvement, Coral Springs’ own George Gadson, is an artist and a sculptor. For several years now, he has been designing the statues that the African-American Achievers award winners receive at this event.

Each achiever will receive $10,000 for the South Florida charity or charities of his or her choice from JM Family, Southeast Toyota and JM Lexus. Also, the person nominating the achiever will also receive $500 for the nonprofit of their choice.

“It is a fun process, but it’s tough every time,” said Caliendo.

According to Martzall, the commitment JM Family Enterprises has had in shaping the next generation of leaders is what the City of Coral Springs admires most about their long-standing partnership with the organization.

Nominees must be 18-years-old and reside in Miami-Dade, Broward or Palm Beach County. Applications are due November 30, 2018 and are available at or by calling (866) 516-2497. 


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