Each year, the American Red Cross of Chicago & Northern Illinois honors individuals and groups for acts of great bravery, dedication and service to the community at our Heroes Breakfast. Those honored at this event embody the mission at the American Red Cross: to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies.
These heroes have saved lives, created programs that serve others and changed systems to strengthen the vulnerable. The 2016 Nurse Hero, Darice Bohne, encapsulated her worldview succinctly by saying, “Rise up. Do what is right. Make a difference in this world.”
Who in your life embodies that motto? Read the Hero Award descriptions below and nominate a hero.
Heroes are selected from 11 categories:
- Blood Services: Nominee(s) involved in creating awareness of the importance of blood donation in the community and/or acts as an activist for the blood community at large
- Community Impact: Individual(s) who has displayed leadership and commitment to community by making a positive and significant impact
- Disaster Services: Individual(s) who has exhibited heroic efforts in any or all of the areas of disaster services, including preparedness, response or recovery during a natural disaster or emergency situation
- Emergency Medical Services: Individual(s) who has exhibited heroic efforts as a paramedic, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) representative, OR a non-medical professional with any type of training to prepare them for the emergency (i.e: lifeguard training, CPR training, or first aid)
- Firefighter: The nominee(s) is a professional, reserve or volunteer firefighter or medical personnel related to dispatch operations of a fire department
- Global Citizenship: The nominee(s) has volunteered or worked to meet the needs of the world’s potentially vulnerable populations by building safer, more resilient communities and providing relief
- Good Samaritan: The eligible nominee(s) is 18 years or older and has performed an act of heroism involving an unusual, significant or unexpected incident requiring a courageous or unselfish reaction in a crisis or time of need
- Law Enforcement: The nominee(s) is a professional police officer or related law enforcement official
- Military: The nominee(s) is an active or retired military service member, a member of the military reserves or a member of the military reserve training corps or a military supporter
- Nurse: The nominee(s) is a licensed and practicing nurse, nursing student or retired nurse
- Youth: The nominee(s) must be 17 years old or under at the time of the incident or act. The eligible nominee(s) has performed an act of heroism involving an unusual, significant or unexpected incident requiring a courageous or unselfish reaction in a crisis or time of need
Please note that professional nominees (medical services, firefighters, law enforcement, military, or nurses) do not have to be on-duty at the time of the event. Likewise, all nominees can be heroic in a single event, or can be committed to an ongoing situation.