Washington, DC. March 21, 2023 – The Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy will once again mark Financial Literacy Month by honoring outstanding individual and organizational achievements in the financial literacy effort at its Annual Awards Luncheon on April 25, 2023 at the Park Hyatt Washington, DC.

Federal Leadership Award
In November 2022, U.S. Representative David Scott (D-GA-13), ranking member of the House Committee on Agriculture, introduced H.R. 9272, the Consumer Financial Education and Empowerment Act, to provide consumers with necessary resources to achieve their financial goals and generate economic stability. This bipartisan legislation would allow a portion of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Civil Penalty Fund to be used for financial education programs in schools, libraries, nonprofits, and similar organization.

Rep. Scott began his public service in the Georgia General Assembly in 1974.  He is currently serving his tenth term in the U.S. House of Representatives, where he has been a strong voice for farmers, jobs, healthcare, education, veterans, children, and transportation.  He serves on the Agriculture Committee, Financial Services Committee, and NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

As a senior member of the Financial Services Committee, Rep. Scott has stood with homeowners and neighborhoods during financial crises.  He helped to create the Home Assistance Mortgage Program (HAMP), Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP), and Making Home Affordable Program, and has long professed his belief in improving financial education as a key component of the home-buying process.

Rep. Scott will receive the Jump$tart Federal Leadership Award, which was first introduced as the Federal Legislator Award, recognizing support from Members of the United States Congress, and later renamed the Federal Leadership Award, extending recognition to other leaders from federal government who are using their platform to promote financial literacy and financial education.

William E. Odom Visionary Leadership Award
A personal finance columnist for more than 25 years, Michelle Singletary has been an advocate for financial education and a longtime friend and supporter of the Jump$tart Coalition, having twice in the past, served as emcee of our annual Awards event. To the public, she is perhaps best known for her award-winning column, “The Color of Money,” which is syndicated by the Washington Post New Service and appears in dozens of newspapers across the country.

Singletary is the author of four books: “What to do With Your Money When Crisis Hits: A Survival Guide,” “The 21-Day Financial Fast: Your Path to Financial Peace and Freedom,” “Spend Well, Live Rich: How to Live Well With the Money You Have,” and “Your Money and Your Man: How You and Prince Charming Can Spend Well and Live Rich.”  She is a frequent contributor to NPR programs “1A,” “Morning Edition,” and “All Things Considered.” She has appeared on CNN, PBS, and NBC’s “Today Show,” and hosted her own program, “Singletary Says,” on TV One.

Among numerous honors, she recently received the prestigious Gerald Loeb Award for commentary for “Sincerely, Michelle,” a 10-part series on race and money. Singletary is the director of Prosperity Partners Ministry, a monthly personal finance program she founded at her church, where she and her husband volunteer to teach financial literacy to incarcerated individuals in various prisons in her home state of Maryland.

Singletary will receive the William E. Odom Visionary Leadership Award, which is given to individuals whose unique vision has led to substantial and groundbreaking gains in the financial literacy effort. The Odom Award is named for its first recipient, Bill Odom, former Chairman of Ford Motor Credit Company, whose vision led to the creation of the Jump$tart Coalition.

Innovation Award
The Singleton Foundation for Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship uses the power of entertainment to enlighten and educate and its goal is to help give everyone the financial skills they need to better manage their lives and their businesses.

As a leader in creating high quality, impactful, and innovative financial education content that continues to reach millions of viewers throughout the world, the Singleton Foundation offers and array of unique initiatives, powerful tools, and partnerships, such as Venture Valley, a fast-paced business simulation video game where players take on the role of an entrepreneur, pitting their learned business savvy against others.

The foundation’s Million Stories Series is a “first-of-it-kind” mobile entertainment channel designed to help people care about their finances. It uses the power of storytelling to “capture attention and inspire action” to create real changes within individuals and their relationship to money. The content is created with top directors, writers, celebrities, and influencers to change the opinion that money is boring, hopeless, or complicated.

Shelley Miles, CEO, will accept the Innovation Award on behalf of the Singleton Foundation for Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship. The award was first introduced in 2015 as a special recognition for our longtime partner, Experian, for the innovative ways in which it was using social media to educate consumers. Today, it is presented to organizations that are not only doing exceptional work in the financial literacy field, but are doing it in new, different, and inspiring ways.

State Coalition of the Year
Alabama Jump$tart represents the resilience and dedication of Jump$tart State Coalition volunteers who work tirelessly and unassumingly at the local and grassroots levels to ensure that educators and students get the support they need to advance financial literacy in their states.

In 2021, Alabama Jump$tart found itself in a rebuilding phase, proactively recruiting new leadership from state and federal government agencies, nonprofits, and the educational arena. Despite added challenges caused by the pandemic, the coalition rebuilt its board and partner rosters with representation the Alabama Department of Education, federal agencies including the FDIC, nonprofit organizations, the Alabama Cooperative Extension system, the Alabama Securities System, credit unions and banks.

The coalition has been a steady and committed force within the state, advocating for partnerships and collaboration amongst organizations committed to increasing financial education and literacy for youth. Its leadership has put great effort into holding annual teacher training events and workshops throughout the years for K-12 educators. They have provided free or reduced cost quality curriculum and resources for use in the classroom to break down barriers of underserved school systems.

Buffy Murphy, Vice President and Regional CRA Specialist for Cadence Bank, and volunteer state coalition leader will accept the State Coalition of the Year Award on behalf of Alabama Jump$tart. This award, first presented in 2005, recognizes outstanding achievements by a Jump$tart-affiliated state coalition over the past year, emphasizing not only the financial literacy mission, but also the coalition’s commitment to achieving it through collaboration. While only one state coalition is recognized each year, the award draws attention to the collective achievements of the entire state coalition network.