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Rusty Awards


Rusty Awards Nominations

Please provide as much information as possible i.e., bio, news clippings, and other documentation to explain why you feel this nominee should be honored by the Committee. A member of the Committee will be contacting you for further information if your nominee is selected. The Committee reserves the right to change the category of the nominee as deemed appropriate or to not select a winner in any specific category.

Award Criteria

  • JOHN C. GARTH PERSON OF THE YEAR: Must have a disability under ADA Guidelines and live in Bell County. This person must have made a significant achievement in their lives – social, economic, effort, inspirational, etc. – and contributes to the community.
  • JIM AND DAURICE BOWMER FAMILY MEMBER OF THE YEAR: A citizen of Bell County who has had a positive impact on a relative or relatives with one or more disabilities. An entire family can be nominated for this award.
  • SHIRLEY BIELS HEALTH CARE WORKER OF THE YEAR: Must have been in the health care or fitness related field in Bell County during the past 12 months and made a positive impact on a person or persons with disabilities. This can be any field in the health care profession.
  • LAURA “PAT” TAYLOR ADVOCATE OF THE YEAR: An government, non-profit employee or a volunteer or individual within Bell County who has made a positive impact on persons with disabilities through their work or effort. Pat Taylor was a public employee known for “going the extra mile” to help people in need.
  • JENNIFER PHILLIPS AWARD FOR COURAGE: Does not have to be a Bell County resident, but must be a resident of Texas. The award is for courage and spirit in the face of disability. This person is a “fighter.” Can be a disability the person is still facing, or a disability a person has overcome. A person’s effort, not just the results, will receive heavy consideration.
  • EMPLOYER OF THE YEAR: Any business, industry or organization that employs persons with disabilities in Bell County. The number hired or business size does not matter. It is important how the employer gives persons with disabilities an equal opportunity to work in an environment that allows them to do their best on the job.
  • MEDIA PERSON OF THE YEAR: Any member of the media that has contributed, through public communications, to eliminate attitudinal, social and physical barriers regarding persons with disabilities. Also, accurately portrays people with disabilities. Any type of media available to the public in Bell County is eligible for this award. The Committee reserves the right to forward the awarded nomination for consideration of a Barbara Jordan Award.
  • BELL COUNTY JUDGE’S MERITORIOUS SERVICE AWARD: Must be a Bell County resident, or organization, that has made an impact on the life or lives, of persons with disabilities. This award is an “open” award and can be awarded to any resident, group, or organization.
  • ARMED FORCES PERSON OF THE YEAR: Must have served on Active Duty in the Fort Hood/Bell County area during the preceding 12 months. This award is to recognize an individual service member whose efforts, actions, or contributions have significantly enhanced the quality of life for disabled persons within the military or civilian community.
  • HARRY WILSON ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Must be a Bell County resident with a disability and associated with athletics. Winning or losing in the aforementioned athletic competition is not criteria.
  • PAT ELLIOTT INSPIRATIONAL AWARD: A Bell County resident who is an inspiration to people with disabilities. This person does not have to have a disability.

Awards Nomination Form



EMAIL Melissa.Ingriola@HOCTILC.ORG