The Human Relations Council of the Santa Monica Bay Area (HRC Santa Monica) has announced the launch of the Mark J. Benjamin Community Impact Awards nominations process.

The goal of HRC Santa Monica’s Mark J. Benjamin Community Impact Awards Program is to recognize individuals whose involvement with community organizations contributes to and impacts building a respectful, inclusive community. Honorees are people who (1) promote understanding within the diverse community, (2) make a difference, and (3) demonstrate compassion for others.

The program is named for former Morley Builders CEO Mark J. Benjamin who died in a tragic aviation accident in October, 2013. Organizers said Benjamin, a HRC Santa Monica long-time board member, was a true hero who gave generously and thoughtfully in support of the Santa Monica and Los Angeles County community.

HRC Santa Monica invites community nonprofits, businesses, faith communities and neighborhood organizations in West Los Angeles to participate in the Mark J. Benjamin Community Impact Awards Program by nominating someone who represents the organization’s mission and the HRC Santa Monica’s goals. The Nomination Form may be found on HRC Santa Monica’s website at

The nominating period is open from Jan. 5 – Feb. 2. Nominations will be reviewed between Feb. 2 and March 2 and the recipients will be announced on April 1. Awardees will be honored at a special event on Thursday, April 23, at the Santa Monica Bahai Center. There can only be one nominee per organization.

Nominating organizations also agree to participate in the selection process during the month of February. Recommendations will be submitted to the HRC Santa Monica Board of Directors who will make the final decision.

HRC Santa Monica believes it is the sum of the modest, ongoing activities of many that leads to enduring change. Too often, these efforts go unrecognized. HRC Santa Monica is asking the local community to help identify community members who are making a significant impact and bring their work to center stage.

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