2024 Strengthening Democracy Awards

Join Civic Nebraska in honoring seven outstanding Nebraskans who strengthen our democracy in remarkable ways. We invite you to join us for an evening celebrating the power of collective voice with Tennessee Rep. Justin J. Pearson, whose experience being ousted from office for using his voice speaks to the urgency of being loud and clear – even in the face of oppression.

We’ll be celebrating at the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts in Lincoln this year – and we’re eager for you to join us! 

June 27, 2024

5 to 7 pm CDT

Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts

1300 Q St., Lincoln

Heavy hors d’oeuvres provided

OUR 2024 HONOREES

Community
Builder

BOB REEVES
Clinton Neighborhood, Lincoln

Civic
Catalyst

JUAN CARLOS HUERTAS
Lincoln

Champion of
Learning

EDGE
Stacie Higgins, Sue Little, Teresa Albers, Nebraska City
 

Young Civic
Leader

CHLOE PATZLOFF
Lincoln Northeast High School

Defender of 
Democracy

BRAD CHRISTIAN-SALLIS
Omaha
Justin J. Pearson, District 86 State Representative from Tennessee
Justin J. Pearson of Memphis is a member of the Tennessee House of Representatives. He was elected in 2023, at 28 years old. When a mass shooter killed six people at The Covenant School in Nashville on March 27, 2023, Pearson and two fellow representatives staged a protest on the statehouse floor for common-sense gun legislation. Lawmakers retaliated by expelling Pearson and another representative, but local government panels in Memphis and Nashville reinstated them days later. Pearson again ran for the seat in August and handily won it back.
Pearson graduated from Bowdoin College in 2017 with degrees in government and legal studies as well as education studies. Pearson co-founded Memphis Community Against the Pipeline, now known as Memphis Community Against Pollution. The group defeated a multibillion-dollar crude oil pipeline project that would have risked Memphis’ drinking water and taken property from South Memphis residents. The Sierra Club honored Pearson as its 2023 National Changemaker of the Year, and The Root included him in its list of the 100 Most Influential Black Americans 2023.

Locations

After School Programs

  • Sherman Elementary School

    5618 N 14th Ave.
    Omaha, NE 68110

  • Lewis and Clark Middle School

    6901 Burt St.
    Omaha, NE 68132

  • Lothrop Magnet Elementary

    3300 N. 22nd St.
    Omaha, NE 68110

  • Campbell Elementary School

    2200 Dodge St.
    Lincoln, NE 68521

  • Lincoln High School

    2229 J St.
    Lincoln, NE 68510

  • Lincoln Northeast High School

    2635 N. 63rd St.
    Lincoln, NE 68507