Monument To Freedom, Justice & Courage Recognition Criteria


Those whose work significantly impacts the African American community in Jackson County, Missouri. Some emphasis will be given to those whose work has impacted the area from 12th Street to 27th Street North to South and Benton Blvd. to Troost Ave. East to West. These boundaries are used to emphasize the area where African Americans historically lived in Jackson County.

The Jackson County Freedom Wall Commission seeks to recognize outstanding individuals who have demonstrated either currently or in the past, exceptional leadership qualities in their ongoing efforts to enhance the African American community in a variety of sustainable ways. Individuals will be considered who possess one or more of the qualities listed below:

  • portray a positive attitude and project hope for individuals and the forward movement of the African American community
  • a commitment to the values of justice and caring
  • willingly take risks
  • articulate a positive sense of direction for individuals and/or the community

Criteria for Nomination

Individuals nominated for this recognition will have demonstrated several of the following examples of exceptional community leadership and service:

  • Nominees can be living or honored posthumously;
  • Demonstrate a passion to serve others;
  • Create opportunities for engagement and/or involvement;
  • Think critically and creatively;
  • Exhibit particular tenacity or energy in pursuing equality for the African American community;
  • Demonstrate creative initiative in progressing equality and welfare of the community;
  • Develop awareness of equality/welfare in others (i.e. through positive role modeling, through teaching & learning initiatives or curriculum development);
  • Identify opportunities to enhance the quality of life of vulnerable individual(s);
  • Collaborate, communicate or cooperate to enable or enhance welfare or equality provisions;
  • Demonstrate outstanding leadership skills with external partners/agencies/organizations, to strengthen the engagement with county, city, and/or state, to forge active collaborations and alliances to enhance the well-being of the African American community;
  • Have influence in the development and mentoring of future leaders (youth & young adults) in the community or involvement in professional or community  leadership development experiences;
  • Have influence in the community in terms of environmental, cultural, social, financial, and personal sustainability practices and principles;
  • Made significant accomplishments in and efforts toward promoting the principles of diversity within the greater community;
  • Motivate and inspire the people around them to accomplish more than they would have normally;
  • Create a compelling vision for the future and help others understand their role in achieving it;
  • Create opportunities and provide the tools, information and resources when working towards achievement of projects that benefit the African American community;
  • Take prompt and decisive action to resolve community issue(s) that effectively benefit the African American community directly or indirectly;
  • Set a high standard of integrity by leading by example and maintaining high personal standards

Nomination Subject Areas

  • Neighborhood Leadership
  • Politics
  • Education
  • The Arts/Entertainment
  • Mentoring
  • Healthcare/Medicine
  • Sports
  • Community Organizing/Engagement
  • Media
  • Civil Rights/Activism
  • Social Engagement
  • Law/Criminal Justice
  • Faith/Religion
  • Business

This list of subject areas is not exclusive and is meant to be helpful when thinking about potential nominees.

Nomination Selection & Procedures

Each year for the next 10 years, 100 individuals will be selected to be added to the Freedom Honor Wall as directed by the Commission. Nominees not selected can be reconsidered for the next year’s honoree cycle.

Based on submitted nominations, all nominees will be evaluated by the Commission on the quality of their leadership and community experience and the extent to which they have made meaningful contributions to the development, growth and sustainability of the African American community as defined in the eligibility requirements.

The more information provided about the nominee the better, as this information is key in considering them for this recognition.  When nominating an individual, be sure to include a thorough description of his or her contributions to the community, including all of their achievements. The nomination packet will include the following:

  • A nominator is required to provide a picture (if available) and bio (typed, not handwritten) along with a full description (in 1000 words or less) of the accomplishment(s) of their nominee. Explain why he/she believes the individual should be considered for the recognition. What impact has the nominee’s accomplishment had on them or the community?
  • The nominator should ensure the nomination package is as complete as possible. Nominators are asked to assess the contribution of a nominee against the criteria set forth by the Commission. The nomination form and prescribed supporting documentation (bio and picture) should make the full case for the nominee. The nominator will not have a further opportunity to submit additional information nor make the case for a nominee after the deadline.
  • Nominators will be required to submit the nomination form and supporting documentation in one packet or uploaded as one document.

MonumentThe Monument will surround the statue of Leon M. Jordan in the Kansas City park that was bears his name. Leon Jordan was a Kansas City Police lieutenant, who later served in public office and founded Freedom, Inc.

Submission Information

Nominations will not be considered:

  • if received after the closing date;
  • if the nomination form is not used or is incomplete;
  • if the supportive documentation is not submitted with the nomination form

Deadline for receipt of nomination form with supporting documentation is 4:30 pm CST, May 3, 2018.  

Nominations can be submitted by completing the Online Nomination Form or downloading the fillable PDF Nomination Form. 

The PDF Nomination forms (with supporting documentation) can be submitted by doing one of the following:

Mail Or Drop Off To:

Dawn Hickman
Jackson County Courthouse
415 E. 12th Street
2nd Floor
Kansas City, MO 64106

Drop Off:

Urban Summit Friday Breakfast Meetings
1229 Garfield Avenue
Kansas City, MO 64127
(8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.)

(Any nominations received after May 3 at 4:30 p.m. CST will not be considered.)

For more information contact Dawn Hickman at 816-881-3163 or at