Civility Awards

Civility Award Acknowledges Those Who
Take the High Road

The annual Consensus Civility Award breakfast is the feel-good event that kicks off the holiday season. Moderated by KCPT’s Nick Haines, the event is held in November.

The Civility Awards honor people, organizations, and businesses working across differences to solve problems. Every day, in every community, people are working to build bridges, engage in public policy, and tackle the big issues we face in society. Often, this work goes unnoticed. We created the Civility Awards to make sure it doesn’t.

Consensus’ 8th annual Civility Awards Breakfast will be held on Thursday, November 5, 2020 at Grand Street Cafe. Nomination, ticket and sponsorship information will be available soon.

2019 Civility Award Winners:

  • Crescent Peace Society, a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness of different Muslim cultures. Its mission is to build bridges among faith communities, encourage dialogue, and promote justice and mutual understanding. Nominated by Rabbi Moti Rieber, Executive Director of Kansas Interfaith Action.
  • KC Common Good, an initiative of American Public Square at Jewell, was founded to give all 2.2 million members of the Greater Kansas City community a path forward toward hope, opportunity and a successful future. The initiative was based on the knowledge of an existential problem plaguing the Metropolitan Region: Too much crime and violence leading to too many deaths by homicide and suicide. KC Common Good began with a listening tour and community forums and has evolved into a multisectoral effort to develop a Community Resources Platform, due to launch in 2020. Nominated by Alana Muller, Community Development Director at American Public Square.
  • Shirley’s Kitchen Cabinet, a nonprofit, non-partisan organization dedicated to amplifying the voices and power of Black women through education and advocacy, so they can be effective advocates for the issues that matter to them and the communities they serve. Nominated by Lauren Conaway, CEO of InnovateHER KC and Tracy Hull, Manager of Civic Engagement and Highest Awards at Girl Scouts of NE Kansas and NW Missouri.
  • Sarah Smarsh, a Kansas-based journalist who has covered socioeconomic class, politics and public policy for The Guardian, The New York Times and many other publications. Her first book, Heartland: A Memoir of Working Hard and Being Broke in the Richest Country on Earth, was a finalist for the National Book Award. A 2018 research fellow at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Smarsh is a frequent speaker and commentator on economic inequality. She is host and executive producer of The Homecomers, a new podcast series featuring rural and working-class community advocates across the U.S. Nominated by Kendra Bozarth, Communications Manager for The Homecomers with Sarah Smarsh.
  • Dr. Tiffany Willis, a pediatric psychologist at Children’s Mercy Hospital, has dedicated her life to health equity. She provides therapy and assessment for babies, as well as support for parents who are processing trauma and loss. She also founded Birthing Hope, a support group designed to reach minority parents by meeting them where they are, in their own communities, a less intimidating environment. She has led Diversity and Equity efforts throughout Children’s Mercy, is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine, and is an active community volunteer. Nominated by Erica Forrest of Thermo Fisher Scientific.

All proceeds from the event go to continue the vital work of Consensus to engage the public in public policy. We welcome event sponsors and detail the levels available and advertising options in the sponsorship packet.

The award criteria stress respect, integrity, engagement, inclusiveness, objectivity and common ground.

2019 sponsors:

2012-2018 Awardees


Rep. Emanuel Cleaver
Rep. Kevin Yoder
Airick Leonard West, President, Kansas City School Board
Teresa Kelly, Roeland Park Mayor & City Council Councilperson
Sly James, Mayor, Kansas City, Missouri
Darryl Forte, Chief, Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department
Mark Holland, Mayor, Kansas City, Kansas

Lifetime Achievement

Father Norman Rotert
Al Brooks, Founder, Ad Hoc Group Against Crime
Frank Pogge, President, Missouri and Associated Rivers Coalition (MOARC)
SuEllen Fried, founder, Reaching Out from Within and BullySafeUSA
Carol Marinovich, former mayor, Kansas City, Kansas
Sisters Corita Bussanmas and Berta Sailer, Operation Breakthrough

Young Adult

Rachel Gonzalez

Engaging the public

Miriam Pepper, The Kansas City Star editorial page editor
Ann Norbury and Diane Kuhn, Johnson County League of Women Voters, co-presidents


Carol Grimaldi, Brush Creek Community Partners
Steve Roling, Retired CEO, Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City
Corinna West, Founder, Wellness Wordworks
RESPECT Institute
Kate Corwin
, Green Works, founder
Mindy Corporon, founder, “Seven Days”
Debbie Wilson, Saint Luke’s Hospital
Brad Grabs, founder, The Learning Club
Tyrone Flowers, Higher M-Pact
Grandview Park Presbyterian Church
Troost Festival
The Anytown Team
Officer Orlando Singleton, 
Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools
Officer Octavio “Chato” Villalobos, Kansas City Police Department
Kansas City Public Library
Damon Daniel, Ad Hoc Group Against Crime
Sunayana Dumala, Forever Welcome
Rosilyn Temple, KC Mothers in Charge


Greg Graves, Burns & McDonnell
John Couture, Bier Station
The Kansas City Royals