Company: America Works of New York, Inc
Company Description: America Works of New York, Inc places needy individuals into employment. Found in 1984, AWNY employs 70 employees in NYC. AWNY has won awards for innovation in public policy.AWNY serves TANF recipients and applicants,SNAP applicants and recipients,ex-offenders, non-custodial parents,children aging out of foster care Veterans and individuals with HIV/AIDs, among others
Nomination Category: Individual Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Lifetime Achievement Award
Nomination Title: Dr. Lee Bowes, CEO and President
Describe for the judges the nominated individual's lifetime of accomplishments (up to 500 words):
Dr. Lee Bowes has placed over 250,000 needy individuals into employment and over 17,000 this year alone in NYC. Dr. Bowes has been instrumental in the welfare reform and has dedicated her career to helping needy populations obtain and retain employment. She began her career in the late-1970s, as Director of a large CETA program placing over 2,000 people in public sector employment. In 1978 she joined a non-profit that specialized in placing welfare recipients, developmentally challenged and the physically disabled in jobs, where she designed the private sector model (which is run by America Works of New York, Inc. (AWNY)). Twenty-seven years ago, she helped establish AWNY and in 1987 became President/CEO of America of AWNY. In 1987, with a toddler at home and another baby on the way, Dr. Bowes balanced her role as CEO/President of AWNY with raising two babies. Her mission was to change people's lives by lifting them from dependence into the productive world of employment.
AWNY is funded through Federal, State and Local funding and Dr. Bowes operates AWNY fully performance based, meaning that her company does not get paid from the government funding unless AWNY places and retains needy individuals into employment. When Dr. Bowes first became CEO, she was tasked with responding to all government grants on her own, since initially there was not enough money to employ a grant writer and AWNY was equipped with only a handful of employees. It has been 25 years since she became President/CEO of AWNY and she now employs approximately 70 employees throughout NYC. She has subsequently expanded her operations into the America Works network of companies, with currently thirteen offices across the nation in eight states, all of which she is intimately involved in, employing over 150 employees nationwide.
Despite the recent high unemployment rates and tight job market, Dr. Bowes has consistently been able to place and retain needy populations into employment. While placing them into employment, she ensures all of her staff wrap individuals in support services,such as free child care, to maintain long-term employment.For over 27 years, Dr. Bowes has been successful in placing hard-to-serve individuals into employment, including TANF recipients and applicants, SNAP applicants and recipients, ex-offenders, non-custodial parents, children aging out of foster care Veterans, individuals with HIV/AIDs, homeless and sheltered individuals/families, and SSI/SSDI beneficiaries, among others. Dr. Bowes ensures that she and her staff act as mentors and advocates for the populations she serves. She knows that it is difficult for needy populations to be able to afford car fare, so she provides free car fare to individuals placed into employment until they are able to afford it on their own. She often pays for client’s uniforms when they cannot afford to. She offers her assistance when her clients are having difficulty on the job, acting as a buffer between the employer and employee.
Governor Cuomo touts Dr. Bowes’s program for breaking the cycle of poverty.
List the URLs (web addresses) of any online news stories, press releases, or other documents that you would like the judges to see that support your entry. IMPORTANT: List each URL on a separate line, begin each URL with http://, and enclose each URL in square brackets. For example, [http://www.yourcompany.com/pressrelease.html]:
Provide a brief biography of the nominated individual (up to 100 words):
Dr. Bowes received her PhD in Sociology from Boston University, her MSW from Columbia School of Social Work and her BS from the University of Massachusetts. She was an adjunct professor at Columbia University from 1996- 2002. She received national awards for her work in public policy innovation from the Kennedy School at Harvard University and from the Ford Foundation, and recognition/awards for her innovation and creative program model from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the U.S. Department of Equal Employment Opportunity, and the National Welfare-to-Work Partnership. She has written numerous articles and a book entitled No One Need Apply: Getting and Keeping the Best Workers, published by Harvard University.