Colin Kaepernick is the winner of the 2017 Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship
During last year’s NFL preseason thenSan Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin... more
Puffin Offices Closed for Thanksgiving
The offices of the Puffin Foundation and Cultural Forum will... more
Major New Work Arriving Soon at the Puffin Sculpture Garden
Recent visitors to Puffin have been asking about the excavation... more
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Colin Kaepernick is the winner of the 2017 Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship
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During last year’s NFL pre-season, then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began refusing to stand for the playing of the national anthem in protest of racism and police violence.

"I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color," Kaepernick said at the time. "To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."

Last September, after he began kneeling, Kaepernick announced he would donate $1 million and the proceeds from his jersey sales to organizations “working in oppressed communities.” He has nearly completed that pledge, having given to organizations like United We Dream, Black Youth Project, the Lower East Side Girls Club, Meals on Wheels, 350.org, Coalition for the Homeless, and many more.

Colin Kaepernick led the 49ers to within three points of winning the Super Bowl in 2013. He’s completed 72 touchdown passes and has a career 88.9% passer rating. Despite these successes, Kaepernick remains unsigned.

The Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship is a $100,000 prize that honors individuals that challenge the status quo through distinctive, courageous, imaginative, and socially responsible work of significance. It is intended to encourage the recipients to continue their work, and to inspire others to challenge the prevailing orthodoxies they face in their own lives.

“Colin Kaepernick is a true example of a creative citizen,” said Perry Rosenstein, President of The Puffin Foundation Ltd. “We all know he has courageously risked his position to focus attention on abuses by law enforcement against people of color and on the plague of racism in the United States. But he has also excelled as a committed activist and community organizer who has involved himself in myriad social issues. From educating youngsters on how to stand up for their rights to supporting a multitude of organizations fighting for equality and a better society, Colin Kaepernick’s creative commitment to fighting for change is a model for us all.”

 



Remarks of Neal Rosenstein, Vice President of the Puffin Foundation, awarding the Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship to Colin Kaepernick.



On behalf of Perry and Gladys and the Puffin Foundation I’d like to say it’s truly a pleasure to be here tonight in this wonderful locale, in support of the vital work of the Nation Institute, with this fantastic audience, honoring the truly extraordinary Colin Kaepernick.

The Puffin/Nation prize recognizes “Creative Citizenship.” Every year the Institute and Puffin wrestle over the outstanding individuals who are nominated for this award. Our choice this year was clear.

Colin is a true example of a creative citizen. We all know he has courageously risked his career to focus attention on the abuses by law enforcement against people of color and on the plague of institutionalized racism and oppression in the United States. But his activism and engagement go far beyond the headlines of exercising his first amendment rights to “take a knee” during the playing of the national anthem. Here’s what you may not know:

He has excelled as a committed citizen-activist. From fostering youngsters on how to stand up for their rights in society, to supporting great organizations like: Bill McKibben’s 350.org; the American Friends Service Committee; groups fighting for the rights of women and indigenous peoples and the local grassroots organizations at the forefront of confronting racism in their neighborhoods and across the country… Colin’s creative commitment to fight for change is a model for us all.

We weren’t surprised to learn that he will be donating the $100,000 that comes with this award to his “Know Your Rights Camps” a free campaign for youth to raise awareness on higher education, self empowerment, and instruction on how to properly interact with law enforcement.

Let’s face it, in these dangerous times with the rights many of us take for granted under increasing assault, we need more Colin Kaepernicks. With the ongoing oppression of people of color - and the empowerment of white supremacists and Neo-Nazis by the highest office-holder in the land, we need more Colin Kaepernicks. And with the immoral leadership of Congress and the executive branch intent on enriching the richest and harming the neediest, we need more Colin Kaepernicks. Fortunately, we have him right here…and It’s a pleasure to invite him to the stage… This year’s Puffin Nation Creative Citizenship awardee…Colin Kaepernick!

 
Puffin Offices Closed for Thanksgiving
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The offices of the Puffin Foundation and Cultural Forum will be closed Thursday November 23 and Friday November 24. We will resume normal office hours Monday the 27th at 9:00am.

Wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving!

 

 
Major New Work Arriving Soon at the Puffin Sculpture Garden
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Recent visitors to Puffin have been asking about the excavation site in the Puffin Sculpture Garden. We are pleased to announce that a new sculpture honoring the extraordinary life of activist-folk singer Pete Seeger will soon arrive. This major work, commissioned by the Puffin Foundation has been created by renowned sculptor Gary Sussman (pictured above with his son in front of the site for the sculpture.) We are proud to pay homage to Seeger's incredible life and the causes he championed in this work. For those wondering about the epic sculpture "The Warrior of Cadmus" by Stan Marcus that was previously in this location, don't fret. The piece will soon find a new home nearby in the park!


Gary Sussman and his son Spencer.

 
Journalist Juan Gonzalez speaks at Puffin Educational Forum
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Journalist Juan Gonzalez spoke at our lunchtime lecture series The Puffin Educational Forum. His topic of discussion was "Reclaiming Gotham: Bill de Blasio and the Movement to End America’s Tale of Two Cities." Juan is an American progressive broadcast journalist and investigative reporter. He was also a columnist for the New York Daily News from 1987 to 2016. He frequently co-hosts the radio and television program Democracy Now! with Amy Goodman.

For more upcoming lectures in this series please visit the Puffin Cultural Forum events page here.

He is pictured below with Professor Moshe Banai, curator of the Educational Forum, Puffin Foundation VP Neal Rosenstein, Puffin Foundation Exec. Director Gladys- Miller Rosenstein, Amy Goodman, and his fellow Democracy Now colleagues. Photo Credit: Rachel Banai

 
Puffin Is Proud To Sponsor Programs At The Museum Of The City Of New York
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Attention Educators! Puffin is proud to sponsor the following programs at the http://www.mcny.org/#mce_temp_url#


 
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The Puffin Cultural Forum is project of the Puffin Foundation Ltd. which, through the arts, encourages dialog about issues important to the community. Gallery Hours Tuesday-Thursday 12:00- 4:00pm. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!

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