Each member of the Peace Corps family contributes to the agency’s success. The John F. Kennedy Service Award honors just a few of these individuals who go above and beyond for the Peace Corps and America every day.
The Peace Corps established the John F. Kennedy Award in 2006 to honor the hard work and sacrifice of six individuals who have given outstanding service to the Peace Corps at home and abroad. The award is presented every five years to two current Peace Corps Volunteers, one returned Peace Corps Volunteer, one returned Peace Corps Response Volunteer and two Peace Corps staff members.
Award recipients demonstrate exceptional service and leadership and further the Peace Corps mission and its three goals:
- To help the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained Volunteers
- To help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served
- To help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans
- Theresa Govert (Botswana 2013–16)
- Lauren Breland (Thailand 2014–17)
- Dr. Brian Goff Smith (Guatemala 2003–06)
- Bob Arias (Colombia 1964–66; Peace Corps Response Panama, Paraguay, Colombia 2009–13)
- Bryan Dwyer (El Salvador 2002–04; Staff/El Salvador, Belize, Honduras, Rwanda 2005–16)
- T. A. “Froggy” Chance (Jamaica 1982–present)
Franklin H. Williams Award
The Franklin H. Williams Award was initiated in the New York Regional Office in 1998. It was conceived during a conversation between Regional Manager John Coyne and Recruiter Leslie Jean-Pierre. It grew out of an idea by Leslie Jean-Pierre that the New York Recruitment Office recognize outstanding RPCVs of color in the New York Region. John Coyne then recommended to Acting Director Chuck Baquet that he take the award nationally, and it was the following year. Coyne named it the Franklin H. Williams because Williams was a key figure in the early days of the agency as the Regional Director for Africa and later U.S. Ambassador to Ghana.