Orlando Hotelier and Philanthropist Harris Rosen Awarded Coretta Scott King A.N.G.E.L. Award by The King Center, Atlanta
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ORLANDO (Jan. 23, 2015) – Orlando hotelier and philanthropist Harris Rosen, President & COO of Rosen Hotels & Resorts®, received the Coretta Scott King A.N.G.E.L. Award at the 32nd Annual Salute to Greatness Awards Dinner presented by The King Center in Atlanta. The King Center, formally known as The Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change, was established in 1968 by Mrs. Coretta Scott King. The awards ceremony took place on Jan. 17, 2015 (in observance of the late Dr. King’s 86th birthday) at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Atlanta.
The awards event recognized just four honorees. The Salute to Greatness Award, one of the King Center’s highest honors, was awarded to former President Bill Clinton, the 42nd president of the United States, and to Bernard J. Tyson, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Permanente. The Coretta Scott King A.N.G.E.L. (Advancing Nonviolence through Generations of Exceptional Leadership) Award was given to Harris Rosen and to Aidan Thomas Hornaday, founder of the Aidan Cares Foundation. The award is given in honor of and in keeping with the spirit of the late Coretta Scott King and recognizes a youth or young adult and a youth organization/initiative which exemplifies exceptional leadership in the areas of peace, social justice and nonviolent social change. The honor was established and awarded for the first time in 2013.
Rosen was being recognized for his more than 20 year commitment to the Tangelo Park Program, a three-fold educational community service initiative within the once drug- and crime-ridden Tangelo Park neighborhood of Orlando. In 1992, as Rosen was planning his seventh property, Rosen Shingle Creek, he was struck with an overwhelming sense of gratitude for his many blessings and decided it was time to give back to his community. By 1993, he had created the Tangelo Park Program, a personally funded concept. His innovative program provides free preschool for every two-, three-, and four-year-old child living in the neighborhood and a full community college or four-year college, or a vocational or technical school scholarship for every graduating high school senior. In addition, the program provides a Neighborhood Center for Families where parents can take parenting courses and obtain counseling and other resources to help them become positive role models for their children.
When Rosen created the Tangelo Park Program, the community’s high school dropout rate was 43 percent higher than the national average. Not long after the program began, high school graduation rates soared with an almost zero dropout rate. To date, more than 280 young people have now attended college or vocational school.
“I am so honored that the Tangelo Park Program has been recognized by The King Center and I am truly humbled to receive an award given in the spirit of Mrs. Coretta Scott King,” said Rosen. “I will be happy to accept the honor on behalf of the Tangelo Park community and especially all of the youngsters who have worked so hard over the past 20 years to better themselves through the gift of education.”
Established in 1968 by Mrs. Coretta Scott King, The Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change (“The King Center”) has been a global destination, resource center and community institution for over a quarter century. Nearly a million people each year make pilgrimage to the National Historic Site to learn, be inspired and pay their respects to Dr. King’s legacy.
Both a traditional memorial and programmatic nonprofit, the King Center was envisioned by its founder to be “no dead monument, but a living memorial filled with all the vitality that was his, a center of human endeavor, committed to the causes for which he lived and died.” That vision was carried out through educational and community programs until Mrs. King’s retirement in the mid-1990s, and today it is being revitalized.
Celebrating more than 40 years in business, Rosen Hotels & Resorts comprises nearly 6,500 guest rooms at seven Orlando hotels: three convention properties – Rosen Plaza®, Rosen Centre® and Rosen Shingle Creek®, as well as four value-priced leisure properties – Rosen Inn International; Rosen Inn, closest to Universal; Rosen Inn at Pointe Orlando; and Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista. For more information, visit www.rosenhotels.com.