Acts of Aloha – Mainland & Abroad

Dr. Judith Palier (in memoriam)
Identity, Inc.

"I have known Judy for many years. We taught together at San Juan College, and occasionally co-taught courses of a cross cultural nature. Judy retired from the college in 2017, and passed away shortly thereafter. What was incredible about her, and why I am nominating her in memoriam, is because of the impact she made not only at the college, but also as founder of Identity Inc, an LGBTQ Community Center that is serving one of the most conservative corners of New Mexico. At San Juan College, Judy – this amazing combination energy, intelligence, strength, loyalty, and humor – was the heart, brains, and force behind the establishment of many programs that are now taken for granted, including International Studies, for which she had a special love. She was incredible to teach with, seemingly able to expound on almost any topic with wide-ranging knowledge, often backed up by personal experience, and was deeply respected by both students and faculty. In the last few years of her life, Judy worked tirelessly to establish “safe zones” at the college, as well as a safe, welcoming, and enduring place within the community for LGBTQ individuals. Her work on behalf of Identity Inc ranged from grant-writing and fund-raising, finding and maintaining a long-term facility, establishing a Board of Directors and working to obtain status as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, coordinating with and training police and other city officials as a support network, developing programs to meet the needs and interests of the members, and so on. I miss her deeply, as do other members of the community, and want her sister Mickey to know how much Judy’s work meant to us all. Judy was the embodiment of someone who lived the spirit of Aloha.Nominated by Karen Benally

Coleen Sullivan
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio

"Coleen Sullivan is my mom and while we all think our moms are the best mom out there my mom really is amazing!! She is the most thoughtful, kind, loving, selfless and caring person I have ever known. She would give you her shirt off her back and she literally does. Any time one of her sisters or friends compliments her outfit or dress she usually ends up giving it to them later to wear. She is so quick to say yes to helping a good cause like raising money for kids battling cancer or cooking and preparing meals for those going through tough times to help get them through their week. She is a mail carrier in Ohio and everyone on her mail route loves her because she cares and makes them feel special even though she is simply delivering their mail. My mom has been through so much over the years and regardless she always has a smile on her face and never lets those tough times keep her from helping others. I LOVE my MOM and I wish everyone had a mom like mine in their life!"  Nominated by Anna Grove, Art by Anna

 

William Ratliff III
Mountain Brook, Alabama

"Carlton and I are nominating Will Ratliff because he has a huge heart and he helped us immensely a few months ago during a family emergency. Will is Carlton's brother-in-law, and he flew from AL to FL to be by Carlton's bedside when Carlton unexpectedly ended up in the ICU under sedation. I didn't ask Will to fly out to be with us; he just knew I was alone and needed help. He arrived first thing the next morning and stayed for a few days. He stayed by Carlton's bedside when I needed breaks and he was such a calming presence. Will was there to speak with the many doctors and specialists and he helped me sort through all of the decisions that needed to be made and questions that needed to be asked. Will was literally our rock during that time and he provided us with so much support and love. We love Will dearly and believe he deserves the Route 99 Hawaii Acts of Aloha Award. " Nominated by Kellie Stewart

Dr. Kim Langmaid, Co-Founder
Walking Mountains, Vale, Colorado

Walking Mountains is the FIRST organization in the United States to become a certified sustainable destination -- meeting and maintaining progress on over 40 sustainability criteria including: environmental stewardship, climate change adaptation, greenhouse gas reductions, cultural heritage protection, low impact transportation, waste reduction, public health and safety, workforce housing, sustainability education, and more.  Photo of Dr. Langmaid & Melissa Kirr.

 

Cassandra Smith
Health, Wellness & Financial Freedom
Victoria, Australia

"Cassie has such a beautiful soul! She cares so much about others and is always helping people. After tragically losing her partner to a car accident while pregnant with their child, she has raised their daughter alone. She has used her grief and struggles to inspire others and despite her own problems is always a shining light for others." Nominated by Kim Vance

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