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2012 Director’s Community Leadership Awards

Buffalo Nestor Hernandez

Anchorage field office Director’s Community Leadership Award 2011

The Buffalo Division is pleased to honor Nestor Hernandez, former executive director of The Belle Center, as a recipient of the 2012 Director’s Community Leadership Award.

The Belle Center, located in Buffalo, New York, is a community center in a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood known for gang activity. Since 2006, Mr. Hernandez has worked to create and implement a strategic plan to expand and fund the services of The Belle Center, increasing the operating budget from $544,000 to $2.4 million. Mr. Hernandez’s goal was to develop The Belle Center as a beacon in the community, provide a safe place for children to learn and play, offer a convenient location for adult immigrants to learn English, and provide day care on a sliding fee scale.

Mr. Hernandez, a Citizens Academy graduate, collaborates with FBI Buffalo and its Safe Streets Task Force to provide an FBI fitness activity for at-risk youth participating in the center’s summer program. He’s also worked with the FBI to educate The Belle Center staff on gang recognition and awareness. Mr. Hernandez has demonstrated leadership in supporting youth and educational programming; raising community awareness; helping to deter violent crime, gangs, and drugs within the neighborhood; and advancing cooperation between law enforcement and the Hispanic community in Buffalo.

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FBI Director Recognizes
Distinguished Community Leaders
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In a ceremony at FBI Headquarters, Director Robert S. Mueller, III recognized the recipients of the 2012 Director’s Community Leadership Award. These leaders, selected by their area FBI field office, have demonstrated outstanding contributions to their local communities through service. The FBI is grateful for the work of each of these individuals and organizations on behalf of their communities.

“Whatever the motivation—an unfilled need, a tragic occurrence, a desire to give back—these are people who make things happen and enlist others in their cause,” said Director Mueller. “They are activists who have earned their prestige through good works.”

Recipients of the 2012 Director’s Community Leadership Award include:

- Albany
- Albuquerque
- Anchorage
- Atlanta
- Baltimore
- Birmingham
- Boston
- Buffalo
- Charlotte
- Chicago
- Cincinnati
- Cleveland
- Columbia
- Dallas
- Denver
- Detroit
- El Paso
- Honolulu
- Houston
- Indianapolis
- Jackson
- Jacksonville
- Kansas City
- Knoxville
- Las Vegas
- Little Rock
- Los Angeles
- Louisville
- Memphis

- Milwaukee
- Minneapolis
- Mobile
- New Haven
- New Orleans
- New York
- Newark
- Norfolk
- Oklahoma City
- Omaha
- Philadelphia
- Phoenix
- Portland
- Richmond
- Sacramento
- Salt Lake City
- San Antonio
- San Diego
- San Francisco
- San Juan
- Seattle
- Springfield
- St. Louis
- Tampa
- Washington Field
Office of Public Affairs 

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