Recently Grand Canyon University student, John Stacey was the first recipient of the Youth Leadership Award from the Cook Native American Ministries Foundation. He was honored at the Cook Native American Ministries Appreciation and Leadership Banquet on January 11, 2019.
Check out more about the foundation and John Stacey below!
What is the Cook Native American Ministries Foundation?
Charles H. Cook had a passion for ministry to Native Americans. As a missionary to the Pima Indians in 1870, he worked with the Pima people as both a missionary and a teacher. Today the Cook Native American Ministries Foundation continues to honor his vision and passion to bring opportunities for leadership education to Native Americans outside of a traditional school setting.
Though the Cook school closed in 2008, the organization’s heart has not changed one bit and commits itself to its mission. It has been formed into a charitable foundation that assists Native American tribal communities through equipping and educating leaders. The Cook Native American Ministries Foundation was officially founded in 2015 with a vision to develop Native American leadership in churches to help serve and inspire in their communities. Programs have been taught on their former Tempe campus and in reservation churches and other locations. Through this program, many Christian leaders, pastors, teachers, educators and community leaders have been produced in the nation.
John Stacey was recommended for the award by his Student Service Counselor Johanna Vasquez for his “courage in taking the step to start the Tribal Club at Grand Canyon University.” She continues in saying, “there was a great need for a sense of community within our Native American students and a club was something I felt would help engage our students. Since only a student can start a club, I had encouraged some students to start this kind of club and as a Freshman, John came to me and said he wanted to start it. Although he knew it would be a challenge for him, he was ready to take on the task.”
John is an Honors student, volunteers with local youth, is involved in community sports and is a very caring person. His counselor states that he is, “the pioneer of starting something great within our Native American community here at GCU.” She has seen him grow in the last year as a person, student and leader and witnessed the positive results of the club he started. She felt that this type of aware was well-deserved because of his, “courage to start something that was out of the norm for him. He is a leader in the making and I believe he will do amazing things in the future.”
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Written by Lily Cooper, a professional writing major.