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For 72 years, NCCJ St. Louis has honored those leaders who, in their own lives, embrace the tenets of NCCJ’s work to make St. Louis a community where all people are valued and respected.

Don Danforth III, President and Co-Founder of City Academy was honored with a Brotherhood Sisterhood Award on June 6. The award honors individuals whose work demonstrates the power of diversity, inclusion, and equity. Friends and family in the City Academy community came out to celebrate Don’s deserving recognition
(Jerris Kirkwood ’10 (CBC ’16, Saint Louis University ’20) and his family are pictured above with Don at the ceremony).

In a 2014 article in St. Louis Magazine, Don reflected on City Academy and why it was important to start a school, stating, “I met many talented, bright children with limitless potential but limited opportunities. I was inspired and determined to change their educational options. I’ve followed my mentor Martin Mathews’ advice ‘to provide children with the same opportunities that you expected for your own children’… we must provide all children with quality education, exceptional teachers, and a variety of comprehensive extracurricular activities. When we do, they will flourish.”

In addition to his tireless commitment to educational excellence for City Academy students, he is a community leader. Don serves on numerous nonprofit boards including the American Youth Foundation, KIPP: St. Louis, and Teach for America. His work has been recognized for more than 15 years by the community: St. Louis Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 (2002), CORO Leadership Center Emerging Leader Award (2004), St. Louis American Salute to Excellence Stellar Performer (2007), The Princeton Award for Community Service, the Opportunity Maker Award from Boys Hope Girls Hope of St. Louis, and the Voices for Children Superhero Award.

We are grateful to Mr. Danforth for his vision, commitment and passion for providing excellent education that is available for all.

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