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(Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) – Former Miami Dolphins and the team’s current director of youth and community programs Twan Russell spoke enthusiastically to a crowd of more than 150 community leaders and educators at the recent kick-off of the Broward Education Foundation’s 30thAnniversary. His passion for kids and the importance of investing in their education lit up the room as he encouraged all attendees to get involved, support the Foundation and help identify outstanding graduates of Broward public schools.

He announced the call for nominations for the Broward Education Foundation Hall of Fame Distinguished Alumni Awards, which will recognize alumni of the Broward County Public School System who have left an incredible imprint on education, made significant contributions to society or have been recognized for outstanding achievement in any field.

“There’s no better investment in the future of our community than through our kids,” said Russell. “I’m proud to be serving as the Foundation’s anniversary spokesperson so I can be a part of supporting our schools and recognizing the proud graduates of the Broward school system.”

Nominations are being accepted now through May 1 for candidates to be recognized in three categories: Outstanding Achievement Award, for the alumnus who has made significant achievements in any field; Lifetime Achievement Award, for the alumnus who has dedicated him or herself to improving public education; and the Education Achievement Award, presented to the public school graduate who has donated his or her career to public education. Nomination forms are available online at or by calling 754-321-2030.

Anniversary sponsors include Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and the Sun-Sentinel. For sponsorship information, contact Shea Ciriago, director of development, at or 754-321-2033.

Anniversary celebrations will continue throughout the year with the 18th Annual Scholarship Celebration on May 10 at the Broward County Convention Center and the Hall of Fame Awards ceremony in October.

Anniversary host committee members include (do we want to continue to use this list?) Gale Butler, Maroone/AutoNation; Ginny Miller, Miller Construction; Dr. Dorothy Orr, Broward Public Schools; Kim Bentley, JM Family; Mike Long, Broward Partnership for the Homeless; Anne McMichael, retired; Margarita Castellon, AT&T; Dr. Abe Fischler, Nova Southeastern University; Joe Cobo, Cobo Cobo, Welzien, Bowers & Co.; Maureen Dinnen and Ann Murray, School Board of Broward County; Alan Levy, Great American Farms and Broward Workshop; and Tracy Clark, Broward County Public Schools.

About the Broward Education Foundation

Established in 1983, the non-profit Broward Education Foundation (BEF) seeks private contributions to supplement the public funding schools receive. The Foundation raises support from the private sector and charitable foundations to provide scholarships to college- or trade-bound high school graduates who have exhausted all other sources of support, grants to support innovative curriculum in the classroom and free school supplies to teachers in Title I low income schools through the Tools for Schools Broward center in Pompano Beach.

BEF was ranked as the 10th best education foundation in the nation for its effectiveness in generating and sustaining financial resources and distributing funds to students in the district, according to a 2012 study conducted by the Dewey & Associates consulting firm. During the 2011-12 fiscal year, the Foundation contributed more than $1.7 million in scholarships, school supplies, teacher grants and other school support.

For more information, call 754-321-2030, visit, like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter.