Submit your nominations for the Spirit of America Award

One of our great honors each year is recognizing one individual with the Southeast Missourian Spirit of America Award.

While many of the previous award recipients have served in the military, the award criteria is not specific to patriotic service. Other aspects we consider: generosity, civic commitment and volunteerism, among other noble traits at the core of the American spirit.

Nominations can be made by individuals or organizations in Cape Girardeau, Perry, Bollinger, Stoddard and Scott counties in Missouri and Union, Pulaski and Alexander counties in Illinois. The winner's nominating organization will receive a $1,000 cash prize, or if nominated by an individual the honoree will select a charity as beneficiary.

Nominations can be submitted online at semissourian.com/spirit. A printed form will also appear regularly in the Southeast Missourian and can be used for submissions. Mail print forms to: Southeast Missourian, Spirit of America Award, P.O. Box 699, Cape Girardeau, MO. 63702. The deadline for nominations is June 15.

Previous Spirit of America Award winners include: David Cantrell (2020), 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).

The 2021 award winner will be recognized in the July 1 edition of the Southeast Missourian and at the City of Cape Girardeau's Great American Fourth of July celebration.

We encourage you to submit your nominations of deserving individuals as we collectively celebrate the American spirit.