EDITORIAL: Newspaper seeks nominations for Spirit of America award

Southeast Missourian publisher Jon K. Rust (left) and 2019 Spirit of America Award winner Blair Moran pose for a photo with a $1,000 check Wednesday, June 3, 2020, in front of the mural outside the newspaper’s office in Cape Girardeau. Blair was nominated by the Sikeston Veterans Park Committee, which is the beneficiary of the cash prize. The Southeast Missourian is soliciting nominations for the 2020 Spirit of America Award. Nominations can be made by organizations or individuals online at semissourian.com/spirit or by using the form that will run periodically in the newspaper. Deadline for nominations is June 19.
Jacob Wiegand ~ Southeast Missourian

Each year the Southeast Missourian solicits nominations for the newspaper's Spirit of America Award. This is an honor bestowed on an individual who represents the American spirit through patriotism, community involvement or entrepreneurial ingenuity, among other noble traits.

We are now accepting nominations for the 2020 award, which will be presented on Independence Day at the City of Cape Girardeau's Great American Fourth of July Celebration.

Individuals, civic clubs and other organizations are encouraged to submit nominations. Nominees will be recognized in the newspaper, and a $1,000 cash prize will go to the nominating organization of the award recipient. If the award recipient is nominated by an individual, the honoree will select a charity to receive the monetary donation.

Nominations are accepted from the following counties: Cape Girardeau, Perry, Bollinger, Stoddard and Scott counties in Missouri and Union, Pulaski and Alexander counties in Illinois.

Past winners include: Blair Moran (2019), Raymond Buhs (2018), Pete Poe (2017), Jim Bollinger (2016), Jerry Ford (2015), Mary Kasten (2014), Kenneth Bender (2013), Kent Zickfield (2012), David Hitt (2011), Rob Callahan (2010), Harry Rediger (2009), Jane Randol Jackson (2008), James Harnes Sr. (2007), Neal Edwards (2006), Melvin Gateley (2005), Dr. Dan Cotner (2004) and John "Doc" Yallaly (2003).

Nominations can be made online at www.semissourian.com/spirit or by using the form that will regularly appear in the Southeast Missourian. Print forms should be mailed to: Southeast Missourian, Spirit of America Award, P.O. Box 699, Cape Girardeau, MO 63702. The nomination should be 250 words or fewer, include nominee's charitable and social memberships and why you believe the nominee embodies the American spirit through patriotism, loyalty, generosity, civility and a strong work ethic.

The deadline for nominations is June 19.

We encourage you to consider nominating deserving individuals as we seeks to shine a light on those who embody the American spirit.