The RecognizeGood Legends program started in 2010, almost by necessity. RecognizeGood: The Foundation launched in 2008 with the goal of providing a way for anyone in the world to say a special, public Thank You to someone who had made a positive impact on their life. Before long, public Thank You posts were pouring in. But some of these Thank You posts were different – they told of exceptional selfless acts that made readers sit back and exclaim “Wow”! The RecognizeGood Legend award was created to celebrate these incredible stories, inspiring others by telling of the extraordinary GOOD that surrounds us every day.
Since then, 50 Legend awards have been presented, a milestone we at RecognizeGood are tremendously proud of. Each of those 50 Legend awards have included pay-it-forward donations – over the course of those 50 presentations and five corresponding Say Thanks, Austin campaigns more than $130,000 has been donated to local nonprofits in the names of RecognizeGood Legend award winners.
When something is done 50 times, there’s a chance that thing might get old or become stale – but each of our Legend presentations have been distinctive and unique, just as each of our Legends themselves have been truly special. Award recipients have been as young as 16 and as old as 89. Presentations have been held all over Austin, not to mention Round Rock, Georgetown, Lakeway, Dripping Springs, Leander, Fredericksburg, Taylor and Bartlett. They’ve been hosted by businesses and nonprofit offices large and small, along with churches, municipal buildings, schools, restaurants, nursing homes, YMCAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, country clubs, hospitals, a baseball field, a soccer field, a medical clinic lobby, an elementary school auditorium, and a high-end car dealership. Those pay-it-forward donations have gone to support education, veterans, youth, seniors, healthcare, animals, homelessness, Central Texans with special needs and even more crucial causes. The individual Legends themselves have taught us something new with each presentation, showing us what true dedication really looks like – volunteering for 70 years with the Red Cross, donating more than 40 gallons to the local blood bank, single-handedly providing more than 92,000 meals to Austin’s underprivileged, or driving over 30,000 miles to simply deliver smiles.
Looking back and celebrating this wonderful milestone for our RecognizeGood Legends program might leave us overlooking all that 50 Legend awards represents, but let’s not forget – 50 Legend awards means raising awareness for 50 worthy nonprofits around Central Texas who nobly support our community and undoubtedly make it a better place to live. It means making significant donations to those nonprofits so that their essential work can continue. It means recognizing 50 individuals who spend their time and talents giving back to our community with no desire for acclaim, and it means sharing 50 amazing stories with our community in hopes of inspiring more Central Texans to realize what a difference one person can make.
Discovering these legendary folks 50 times so far, with no shortage of new candidates being submitted each month, should tell us all we need to know about what type of community we’re blessed to share with each other.