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Two Colorado women recognized for work in public service and civil rights

Annual Governor's Citizenship Medals to be awarded Thursday
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Posted at 8:39 AM, Jan 24, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-24 10:39:31-05

On Thursday, Governor Jared Polis will present six Coloradans with his highest civic honor – the Colorado Governor’s Citizenship Medals. Denver7 morning anchor Nicole Brady spoke to two of this year’s recipients - Lauren Young Casteel and Dr. Carlotta Walls Lanier.

Young Casteel will receive the Public and Community Service Medal. She is the CEO of the Women’s Foundation of Colorado.

Her career in public service includes serving in the Federico Peña administration and running two other philanthropic foundations.

"It is oftentimes the small gestures that one makes. One of my neighbors drivers migrants who have come into the city. That is philanthropy. That is being a good member, community member of our state," Casteel reflected on how she thinks a person becomes a "good citizen."

Dr. Walls Lanier will receive the Vanguard Legacy Medal. Lanier was the youngest member of the “Little Rock 9” who enrolled in Little Rock Central High School in 1957 after it was ordered to integrate. Despite racial discrimination, Walls was committed to receiving an equal education. She moved to Colorado in the 1960s to attend college and has been an advocate for education and civil rights ever since.

"I saw opportunities. I saw the opportunity to do whatever you want to do as long as you put the work in," Lanier said.

Other recipients are Osvaldo Garcia Barron.

John Street, Rob Perlman and John Fielder will be honored posthumously.

Colorado citizenship medals honor service & inspiring excellence

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