On Monday, Jaguars owners Wayne and Delores Barr Weaver were recognized by Junior Achievement of North Florida's Board of Directors as the recipients of the 2010 Thompson S. Baker "Solid as a Rock" Award. The Thompson S. Baker Award, which was presented at a downtown luncheon, celebrates the accomplishments of individuals who have shown outstanding leadership through civic and philanthropic works that have positively influenced business and education in the Jacksonville community.
"The Weavers have had a substantial impact on Jacksonville since the November 20, 1993 announcement of the franchise of the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars are without doubt their most public accomplishment," said Steve St. Amand, President of Junior Achievement of North Florida. "Their most important accomplishments, however, are measured in terms of lives saved, lives changed, low-income homes built, teen pregnancies prevented, equalization of the playing field for women, cancer research, and a myriad of other positives they have brought to our community."
The Weavers are particularly fond of the JAGirl$ program, which was started locally in Jacksonville. Girls are taught the basics of money management including how to balance a check book, save money and manage a household. By giving the girls the information and tools they need to succeed, JAGirl$ is hoping to turn out young leaders among their peers and families.
This is the 12th year that Junior Achievement has presented the "Solid as a Rock" Award, named for Thompson S. Baker, the founder of Florida Rock Industries, for his unselfish devotion to the Jacksonville community. Past honorees were Preston Haskell, Pete Carpenter, O'Neal Douglas, Delores Kesler, Jim Winston, John Fryer, Luther and Blanche Coggin, Tillie Fowler, Bill and Eloise Gay, and David Stein.
Junior Achievement of North Florida is affiliated with JA Worldwide™, the world's largest organization dedicated to educating young people about business, economics, and free enterprise. Junior Achievement has been operating locally since 1963 and during the 2008-2009 school year reached 22,946 students through in-school partnerships with educators.