The Salisbury Award, the community’s first and most prestigious civic award, was presented to the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore at the Foundation’s 25th Anniversary Jubilee celebration on May 8th at the Fountains Conference Center.
The Salisbury Award was established in 1926 by local businessman G. William Phillips for the purpose of recognizing, "service that has been the greatest benefit to the happiness, prosperity, intellectual achievement or moral growth of the community." The award may be given to an individual or an organization in the greater Salisbury region for a specific achievement or a body of work over time.
This year the trustees of the Salisbury Award voted unanimously to recognize the Community Foundation as the 2009 recipient. Stephanie Willie, a trustee of the Salisbury Award, said during the award presentation that the trustees felt the Community Foundation’s approach to meeting community needs with the creation of the "Help Your Neighbor Campaign" in 2008 was especially worthwhile.
Using its own funds, the Community Foundation issued a $10,000 challenge match to the community to support an emergency fund that provides money to local charities that assist families and seniors struggling to meet expenses for basic human needs. The campaign raised a total of $41,760 which is being distributed directly to agencies that help struggling families on the Lower Eastern Shore.
The Salisbury Award has been presented 54 times since 1926. Past recipients of the award include such notable citizens as: Fred A. Grier, Jr.; Dr. George Todd; Ruth Powell; James M. Bennett; Charles Chipman; Avery W. Hall; Richard Henson; Frank Morris; Sister Mary Elizabeth Gintling; Frank Perdue; Dick Hazel; Sam Seidel; Dave Grier; Dick Moore; Paul Martin; Dr. Nevins Todd; Virginia Layfield and Mitzi Perdue. In recent years the Salisbury Award has been presented to: Ben’s Red Swings (2005); Lewis R. Riley (2007); and Phillip "Pete" Cooper (2008).