Allison Johnson receives peace and justice award
By Mike Klein
Justice and Peace Studies
Allison Johnson, a senior majoring in justice and peace studies, received the 2006 Hawkinson Scholarship Nov. 12 for her demonstrated commitment to peace and justice.
Johnson volunteers with a high school youth group at her home congregation, Redeemer Lutheran Church in Fridley. She is a founding member of the ADJUST Program and is a mentor with the PeaceJam Program at St. Thomas, an international education program bringing high school youth together with Nobel Laureates to learn peace-making skills.
In accepting this award, Allison said, "My work for peace and justice has been rewarding and fulfilling. Global issues like fair trade and local issues like reconciliation and community building have motivated me to not simply cry 'peace' but to truly live it with conviction. My resolve is strong to continue the fight for equality and justice on all levels of society, and I will not rest until I feel that my contribution, no matter how big or small, has somehow impacted the lives of those around me."
The Vincent L. Hawkinson Foundation for Peace and Justice was organized in 1988 to honor Rev. Vincent L. Hawkinson, a lifelong advocate for peace. Hawkinson served as pastor of Grace University Lutheran Church for more than 30 years. He was a community leader who witnessed courageously to a vision of political and social change. He vigorously advocated peacemaking and racial equality and stood up for the poor, the oppressed and the powerless. He died in 2001 at age 86.
The foundation was founded on the belief that alternatives to violence and the use of military power must be found for a permanent resolution of interpersonal and global conflict. Seeking new avenues to peace and justice was Hawkinson's life work. The foundation keeps his dream alive by granting scholarships to students who have demonstrated a commitment to peace and justice and by honoring those who pursue these beliefs.