All six winners of the Order of Lincoln, the state's highest award, have ties to the Quad-Cities area.|
The 60-member Lincoln Academy announced the award winners Tuesday at Augustana College. They are Brenda Barnes, William Hammer, Dr. Timothy Johnson, Robert Lane, Robert Ontiveros and Chad Pregracke.
The awards are"given to those who have spent a significant portion of their lives in Illinois or were born in the state, and those who embody the principles of our 16th president," Lincoln Academy president Julie Kellner said.
Winners are chosen in any of 10 categories -- agriculture, the arts, business, education, government and law, labor, medicine and science, religion, social services and sports.
More than 300 people have received the Order of Lincoln Award since the Lincoln Academy was established in 1964 by former Gov. Otto Kerner.Past winners include Studs Terkel, former President Ronald Reagan, and The Joffrey Ballet, the only organization to receive the award.
Gov. Pat Quinn will present the 2013 awards at a dinner and ceremony on April 13 at Augustana, the first time since 1973 the ceremony has been in the Quad-Cities. The ceremony at Centennial Hall is free and open to the public. Tickets to the dinner are $200, and proceeds will benefit the Student Laureate Award Program, funding grants of $1,000 per student winner.
The winners are:
-- Brenda Barnes, former CEO of Sara Lee and a 1975 graduate of Augustana College. Listed by Forbes magazine in 2008 as one of the "most powerful women in the world," she was president and CEO of PepsiCo and is on the board of directors for Avon, The New York Times, LucasFilm and Augustana College.
-- William Hammer, discoverer of the first dinosaur unearthed in Antarctica and holder of the Fritiof Fryxell Chair in Geology at Augustana College. His 1991 discovery ofCryolophosaurus, a large, theropod dinosaur, helped advance understanding of tectonic shift and evolutionary biology.
-- Dr. Timothy Johnson, former medical editor for ABC News, an ordained minister and 1958 graduate of Augustana College. Dr. Johnson won the National Collegiate Oratory Championship as an Augustana student and later wrote a memoir called "Finding God in the Questions".
-- Robert Lane, president and CEO of Deere & Co, from 2000 to 2009. He led the way for global expansion in China, India and Brazil, upgrading and modernizing factories. He is responsible for doubling revenues at Deere and contributing to the Illinois economy.
-- Bob Ontiveros, founder and owner of Milan-based Group O, the largest Hispanic company in the country. Group O is a marketing services and packaging company. Mr. Ontiveros played key roles in establishing the Greater Quad Cities Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and both Boys and Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Valley.
-- Chad Pregracke, founder of Living Lands and Waters. The East Moline native founded the organization in 1998 to clean up the Mississippi and Illinois rivers and their tributaries. The operation has grown to include additional rivers, 13 vessels and thousands of volunteers that have collected more than six million pounds of debris in 14 years.
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