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2013 Director’s Community Leadership Awards

Carl Kenneth Cannon

Director Comey and Carl Kenneth Cannon

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The Springfield Division honors Carl Kenneth Cannon, a youth outreach pioneer in Peoria, Illinois, for spreading his motivational “do right” message to more than 250,000 youth in Illinois, Kansas, Michigan, Ohio, and Washington D.C.

In 2006, after leaving a career with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Mr. Cannon founded the ELITE youth program, an 11-week business boot camp for high school sophomores and juniors in Peoria. The weekly one-hour, in-class program is taught by teams of trained community leaders and business professionals who advise youth on how to land and keep a job. In the first five years, the ELITE program provided more than 500 youth with jobs that gave them spending money, kept them occupied and off the street, and helped them build self-confidence and a resume for their next job. The program has since expanded and now includes the K-8 ELITE youth program, which has been implemented at a local elementary school. The new program includes home visits during the summer where both students and parents are involved and sign a Code of Conduct Covenant.

The students that graduate from the programs go on to mentor K-8 ELITE program students and perform community service. Mr. Cannon uses his previous career as a correctional officer to bring work-release men from the Department of Corrections to attend school assemblies to share their stories and emphasize making good decisions. The students participating in the ELITE programs learn the meaning of respect and good manners. Upon hearing about the program, more than 700 teachers applied for 60 ELITE program positions, eager to bring that mutual respect and good manners back into their classrooms.


FBI Director Recognizes
Distinguished Community Leaders
Director’s Community Leadership Awards

In a ceremony at FBI Headquarters on April 4, 2014, Director James B. Comey recognized the recipients of the 2013 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.

“This year’s honorees have distinguished themselves in remarkable ways through their hard work, their leadership, and their strength of character,” said Director Comey. “They are ordinary citizens, but what they have accomplished is nothing short of extraordinary.”

Recipients of the 2013 Director’s Community Leadership Award are:

- 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
- Pittsburgh
- Portland
- Richmond
- Sacramento
- Salt Lake City
- San Antonio
- San Diego
- San Francisco
- San Juan
- Seattle
- Springfield
- St. Louis
- Tampa
- Washington Field
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