Awards for Scholars and Alumni

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is offering two monetary awards in 2020 for Cooke Scholars and Alumni. The awards are described below and separate guidelines are provided, as nomination and selection differ for the awards.

This achievement award is given annually to one or more current Cooke undergraduate scholars, in honor of Dennis I. Belcher, former counsel to the Cooke Foundation and Mr. Cooke’s estate lawyer. Current undergraduate scholars demonstrating outstanding achievement during the prior two years (January 2018 through December 2019) are eligible.* Such achievements might include the development of an innovative solution to a societal problem, creation of a significant community program, or publication of an important work. In all cases, it is important that the outstanding achievement touches the lives of others in meaningful ways and demonstrates impact. The Dennis I. Belcher Award will be presented by the Foundation’s Board of Directors to the individual(s) selected. Winners will receive a cash prize of up to $5,000 and the recipient(s) will be honored at Scholars Weekend.

* Undergraduate scholars who applied previously to the Undergraduate Scholar Award are eligible for reapplication. Previous winners are ineligible to reapply.

APPLY HERE

 

Selection Process

Any Cooke Foundation staff, scholar, or alumnus/a may nominate one current Cooke undergraduate scholar for the Undergraduate Award. Cooke Scholars may also nominate themselves. Nominators must fill out a brief Nomination Form with a description of the achievement and the nominee’s relevant characteristics. The nominee will then be contacted by Foundation staff to provide an Award Application, including a resume or CV, and a letter of recommendation discussing the nominee’s achievement.

Scholars wishing to self‐nominate may directly submit the Award Application without a nomination form. The Foundation will review additional supplemental materials on a case‐by‐case basis. Select staff will review all applications and make final recommendations to the selection committee. This selection committee of senior staff will recommend the finalist(s) to the Board of Directors.

Selection Criteria

The Foundation will select one or more prize recipients who best exhibit the following accomplishments and characteristics:

  • Extraordinary achievement in an academic field, the arts, or public service.
  • The traits that marked Dennis Belcher’s life and career: empathy, love of learning, innovation, community, and leadership.

Funding

The Belcher Award of up to $5,000 is a cash award given directly to the recipient(s). The recipient(s) may use the award for any purpose and it will not count towards the $40,000 scholarship annual cap. The Foundation may award prizes of less than $5,000 or divide the prize among multiple recipients.

The deadline for the Nomination Form is February 26, 2020 and for the Award Application is March 26, 2020. The Belcher Award will be presented at Scholars Weekend 2020.

Instruction for Nominations

The Nomination Form deadline is February 26, 2020. Once received by the Foundation, the nominee will receive an email from the Foundation with the Award Application link.

Whether a Cooke Scholar self-nominates or is nominated by another person, they will be asked to complete an Award Application. The application and supporting documents are due to the foundation by March 26, 2020. The supporting documentation must include:

  • A resume/CV
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher, community leader, or some other person who can write about the nominee’s achievement in specific terms

The supporting documents must be submitted by the nominee, not the nominator. Any additional supporting documents a nominee would like to submit must receive prior approval. Please submit request for approval to alumni@jkcf.org.

NOMINATE A SCHOLAR HERE

About Dennis I. Belcher

Dennis I. Belcher was one of America’s pre-eminent trusts and estates attorneys and co-chairman of McGuire Woods’ nationally renowned Private Wealth Services Industry Team. Mr. Belcher served Jack Kent Cooke, his estate, and the Foundation that bears his name for over two decades. He was instrumental in forming the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, and continued to provide his guidance and expertise until his passing.

Belcher was long recognized as a visionary within trusts and estates law. A past president of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and former chairman of the American Bar Association’s Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law, his insights were sought out by clients, colleagues and Congress, where his testimony helped influence the direction of federal tax legislation.

Dennis gave generously of his time and expertise to numerous community organizations. He was a member of the Board of Directors of Bessemer Trust. He was instrumental in the founding of Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens where he was General Counsel. Dennis served as Trustee of the James Madison University Foundation and on the Board of Directors of the Commonwealth Club of Virginia. He served as a member of the Board of Governors for St. Christopher’s School from 1993 to 2002, Chairman from 1999 to 2002 and as President of the St. Christopher’s School Foundation from 1993 to 1996, Chairman from 1993 to 1996 and Counsel to the Foundation from 1996 to 2017. He also was very involved with the family trucking company, Good’s Transfer, Inc.

His greatest impact, however, was on the people who knew him. Dennis enjoyed spending time with his family, including the love of his life, his wife Vickie, together since their teenage years, their three children, and one grandson.

In honor of the Cooke Foundation’s founding executive director, Matthew J. Quinn, the Foundation created an award that may be given annually to one or more current Cooke Graduate Scholars or Alumni recognizing outstanding achievement during the prior two years (January 2018 through December 2019).* Winners will receive a cash prize of up to $10,000. Such achievements might include the development of an innovative solution to a societal problem, creation of a significant community program, or publication of an important work. In all cases, it is important that the outstanding achievement touches the lives of others in meaningful ways and demonstrates impact. The Matthew J. Quinn Prize will be awarded by the Board of Directors of the Foundation to the individual(s) selected. The Foundation may award prizes of less than $10,000 or divide the prize among multiple recipients. The recipient(s) will be honored at Scholars Weekend.

* Scholars who applied previously are eligible for reapplication. Previous winners are ineligible to apply again.

APPLY HERE

Selection Process

Any Cooke Foundation staff member, scholar, or alum may nominate one current Cooke Graduate Scholar or alum for the Quinn Prize. Graduate Scholars and Alumni may also nominate themselves. Nominators must fill out a brief Nomination Form with a description of the achievement and the nominee’s relevant characteristics. The nominee will then be contacted by foundation staff to complete an Award Application, including a resume or CV and letter of recommendation discussing the nominee’s achievement.

Scholars wishing to self‐nominate may directly submit the Award Application without a nomination form. The Foundation will review additional supplemental materials on a case‐by‐case basis. Select staff will review all applications and make final recommendations to the selection committee. This selection committee of senior staff will recommend the finalist(s) to the Board of Directors.

Selection Criteria

The Foundation will select one or more prize recipients who best exhibit the following accomplishments and characteristics:

  • Extraordinary achievement in an academic field, the arts, or public service.
  • The traits that marked Mathew Quinn’s life and career: concern for others, love of learning, creativity, integrity, and leadership.

Funding

The Quinn Prize of up to $10,000 is a cash award given directly to the recipient(s). The recipient(s) may use the award for any purpose and, for current Cooke Graduate Scholars, it will not be considered in the determination of their scholarship amounts.

The deadline for the Nomination Form is February 26, 2020 and for the Application Form is March 26, 2020. The Quinn Prize will be presented at Scholars Weekend 2020.

Instructions for Nomination

The Nomination Form deadline is February 26, 2020. Once received by the Foundation, the nominee will receive an email from the Foundation with the Award Application.

Whether a Cooke Scholar self-nominates or is nominated by another person, they will be asked to complete an Award Application. The application and supporting documents are due to the foundation by March 26, 2020. The supporting documentation must include:

  • A resume/CV
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher, community leader, or some other person who can write about the nominee’s achievement in specific terms

The supporting documents must be submitted by the nominee, not the nominator. Any additional supporting documents a nominee would like to submit must receive prior approval. Please submit request for approval to alumni@jkcf.org.

NOMINATE A SCHOLAR HERE

About Matthew J. Quinn

Matthew J. Quinn was born in Brooklyn in 1935. His parents were Irish immigrants with less than grade-school educations. Dr. Quinn’s father drove a streetcar; his mother cared for their home and raised three children.

Dr. Quinn’s life changed when he had the opportunity to attend Brooklyn Prep, a highly selective Jesuit high school, where the teachers helped him discover his love of learning. He went on to spend 12 years with the Society of Jesus, during which time he received three degrees: a B.A. in classics and an M.A. in English from Fordham University and a Ph.L. in philosophy from Woodstock College. He also served in the Society’s mission in the Philippines for three years. As part of his extracurricular activities while a Jesuit, he sang lead for the Woodstock Singers, a group of seminarians that gave frequent concerts on tour, appeared on TV, and recorded for CBS Records.

After leaving the Jesuits, Dr. Quinn joined a Manhattan advertising firm and then began a distinguished career in higher education spanning 45 years. He earned two additional degrees—a Ph.D. in management of higher education from Boston College and a J.D. from Fordham University—and held significant positions at Saint Joseph’s University, Iona College, the New Jersey Department of Higher Education, Boston College, and College of the Holy Cross. He became president of Carroll College in Helena, Montana, in 1989.

Dr. Quinn served as founding executive director of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation from 2000 to 2010, leading the creation of the Foundation’s scholarship programs. This position was an ideal intersection of his many interests and talents: his knowledge of higher education, his curiosity about many academic disciplines, his management and leadership skills, and his commitment to helping people grow and develop to their fullest potential. The Foundation benefited significantly from his creativity, open-mindedness, wisdom, congeniality, strong ethical compass, and commitment to serving others.

Dr. Quinn will be remembered for providing the leadership and vision that first brought the mission of our Foundation to life. We have been able to cultivate our vibrant community of Cooke Scholars due largely to his contributions, and his legacy has endured beyond his tenure in the Matthew J. Quinn Prize. It also lives on in the support we provide each year to every student impacted by our work. He was a unique and wonderful man who is dearly missed.

Undergraduate Scholar Award in Honor of Dennis I. Belcher

This achievement award is given annually to one or more current Cooke undergraduate scholars, in honor of Dennis I. Belcher, former counsel to the Cooke Foundation and Mr. Cooke’s estate lawyer. Current undergraduate scholars demonstrating outstanding achievement during the prior two years (January 2018 through December 2019) are eligible.* Such achievements might include the development of an innovative solution to a societal problem, creation of a significant community program, or publication of an important work. In all cases, it is important that the outstanding achievement touches the lives of others in meaningful ways and demonstrates impact. The Dennis I. Belcher Award will be presented by the Foundation’s Board of Directors to the individual(s) selected. Winners will receive a cash prize of up to $5,000 and the recipient(s) will be honored at Scholars Weekend.

* Undergraduate scholars who applied previously to the Undergraduate Scholar Award are eligible for reapplication. Previous winners are ineligible to reapply.

APPLY HERE

 

Selection Process

Any Cooke Foundation staff, scholar, or alumnus/a may nominate one current Cooke undergraduate scholar for the Undergraduate Award. Cooke Scholars may also nominate themselves. Nominators must fill out a brief Nomination Form with a description of the achievement and the nominee’s relevant characteristics. The nominee will then be contacted by Foundation staff to provide an Award Application, including a resume or CV, and a letter of recommendation discussing the nominee’s achievement.

Scholars wishing to self‐nominate may directly submit the Award Application without a nomination form. The Foundation will review additional supplemental materials on a case‐by‐case basis. Select staff will review all applications and make final recommendations to the selection committee. This selection committee of senior staff will recommend the finalist(s) to the Board of Directors.

Selection Criteria

The Foundation will select one or more prize recipients who best exhibit the following accomplishments and characteristics:

  • Extraordinary achievement in an academic field, the arts, or public service.
  • The traits that marked Dennis Belcher’s life and career: empathy, love of learning, innovation, community, and leadership.

Funding

The Belcher Award of up to $5,000 is a cash award given directly to the recipient(s). The recipient(s) may use the award for any purpose and it will not count towards the $40,000 scholarship annual cap. The Foundation may award prizes of less than $5,000 or divide the prize among multiple recipients.

The deadline for the Nomination Form is February 26, 2020 and for the Award Application is March 26, 2020. The Belcher Award will be presented at Scholars Weekend 2020.

Instruction for Nominations

The Nomination Form deadline is February 26, 2020. Once received by the Foundation, the nominee will receive an email from the Foundation with the Award Application link.

Whether a Cooke Scholar self-nominates or is nominated by another person, they will be asked to complete an Award Application. The application and supporting documents are due to the foundation by March 26, 2020. The supporting documentation must include:

  • A resume/CV
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher, community leader, or some other person who can write about the nominee’s achievement in specific terms

The supporting documents must be submitted by the nominee, not the nominator. Any additional supporting documents a nominee would like to submit must receive prior approval. Please submit request for approval to alumni@jkcf.org.

NOMINATE A SCHOLAR HERE

About Dennis I. Belcher

Dennis I. Belcher was one of America’s pre-eminent trusts and estates attorneys and co-chairman of McGuire Woods’ nationally renowned Private Wealth Services Industry Team. Mr. Belcher served Jack Kent Cooke, his estate, and the Foundation that bears his name for over two decades. He was instrumental in forming the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, and continued to provide his guidance and expertise until his passing.

Belcher was long recognized as a visionary within trusts and estates law. A past president of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and former chairman of the American Bar Association’s Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law, his insights were sought out by clients, colleagues and Congress, where his testimony helped influence the direction of federal tax legislation.

Dennis gave generously of his time and expertise to numerous community organizations. He was a member of the Board of Directors of Bessemer Trust. He was instrumental in the founding of Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens where he was General Counsel. Dennis served as Trustee of the James Madison University Foundation and on the Board of Directors of the Commonwealth Club of Virginia. He served as a member of the Board of Governors for St. Christopher’s School from 1993 to 2002, Chairman from 1999 to 2002 and as President of the St. Christopher’s School Foundation from 1993 to 1996, Chairman from 1993 to 1996 and Counsel to the Foundation from 1996 to 2017. He also was very involved with the family trucking company, Good’s Transfer, Inc.

His greatest impact, however, was on the people who knew him. Dennis enjoyed spending time with his family, including the love of his life, his wife Vickie, together since their teenage years, their three children, and one grandson.

Matthew J. Quinn Prize

In honor of the Cooke Foundation’s founding executive director, Matthew J. Quinn, the Foundation created an award that may be given annually to one or more current Cooke Graduate Scholars or Alumni recognizing outstanding achievement during the prior two years (January 2018 through December 2019).* Winners will receive a cash prize of up to $10,000. Such achievements might include the development of an innovative solution to a societal problem, creation of a significant community program, or publication of an important work. In all cases, it is important that the outstanding achievement touches the lives of others in meaningful ways and demonstrates impact. The Matthew J. Quinn Prize will be awarded by the Board of Directors of the Foundation to the individual(s) selected. The Foundation may award prizes of less than $10,000 or divide the prize among multiple recipients. The recipient(s) will be honored at Scholars Weekend.

* Scholars who applied previously are eligible for reapplication. Previous winners are ineligible to apply again.

APPLY HERE

Selection Process

Any Cooke Foundation staff member, scholar, or alum may nominate one current Cooke Graduate Scholar or alum for the Quinn Prize. Graduate Scholars and Alumni may also nominate themselves. Nominators must fill out a brief Nomination Form with a description of the achievement and the nominee’s relevant characteristics. The nominee will then be contacted by foundation staff to complete an Award Application, including a resume or CV and letter of recommendation discussing the nominee’s achievement.

Scholars wishing to self‐nominate may directly submit the Award Application without a nomination form. The Foundation will review additional supplemental materials on a case‐by‐case basis. Select staff will review all applications and make final recommendations to the selection committee. This selection committee of senior staff will recommend the finalist(s) to the Board of Directors.

Selection Criteria

The Foundation will select one or more prize recipients who best exhibit the following accomplishments and characteristics:

  • Extraordinary achievement in an academic field, the arts, or public service.
  • The traits that marked Mathew Quinn’s life and career: concern for others, love of learning, creativity, integrity, and leadership.

Funding

The Quinn Prize of up to $10,000 is a cash award given directly to the recipient(s). The recipient(s) may use the award for any purpose and, for current Cooke Graduate Scholars, it will not be considered in the determination of their scholarship amounts.

The deadline for the Nomination Form is February 26, 2020 and for the Application Form is March 26, 2020. The Quinn Prize will be presented at Scholars Weekend 2020.

Instructions for Nomination

The Nomination Form deadline is February 26, 2020. Once received by the Foundation, the nominee will receive an email from the Foundation with the Award Application.

Whether a Cooke Scholar self-nominates or is nominated by another person, they will be asked to complete an Award Application. The application and supporting documents are due to the foundation by March 26, 2020. The supporting documentation must include:

  • A resume/CV
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher, community leader, or some other person who can write about the nominee’s achievement in specific terms

The supporting documents must be submitted by the nominee, not the nominator. Any additional supporting documents a nominee would like to submit must receive prior approval. Please submit request for approval to alumni@jkcf.org.

NOMINATE A SCHOLAR HERE

About Matthew J. Quinn

Matthew J. Quinn was born in Brooklyn in 1935. His parents were Irish immigrants with less than grade-school educations. Dr. Quinn’s father drove a streetcar; his mother cared for their home and raised three children.

Dr. Quinn’s life changed when he had the opportunity to attend Brooklyn Prep, a highly selective Jesuit high school, where the teachers helped him discover his love of learning. He went on to spend 12 years with the Society of Jesus, during which time he received three degrees: a B.A. in classics and an M.A. in English from Fordham University and a Ph.L. in philosophy from Woodstock College. He also served in the Society’s mission in the Philippines for three years. As part of his extracurricular activities while a Jesuit, he sang lead for the Woodstock Singers, a group of seminarians that gave frequent concerts on tour, appeared on TV, and recorded for CBS Records.

After leaving the Jesuits, Dr. Quinn joined a Manhattan advertising firm and then began a distinguished career in higher education spanning 45 years. He earned two additional degrees—a Ph.D. in management of higher education from Boston College and a J.D. from Fordham University—and held significant positions at Saint Joseph’s University, Iona College, the New Jersey Department of Higher Education, Boston College, and College of the Holy Cross. He became president of Carroll College in Helena, Montana, in 1989.

Dr. Quinn served as founding executive director of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation from 2000 to 2010, leading the creation of the Foundation’s scholarship programs. This position was an ideal intersection of his many interests and talents: his knowledge of higher education, his curiosity about many academic disciplines, his management and leadership skills, and his commitment to helping people grow and develop to their fullest potential. The Foundation benefited significantly from his creativity, open-mindedness, wisdom, congeniality, strong ethical compass, and commitment to serving others.

Dr. Quinn will be remembered for providing the leadership and vision that first brought the mission of our Foundation to life. We have been able to cultivate our vibrant community of Cooke Scholars due largely to his contributions, and his legacy has endured beyond his tenure in the Matthew J. Quinn Prize. It also lives on in the support we provide each year to every student impacted by our work. He was a unique and wonderful man who is dearly missed.

Contact Us

Email
College Scholarship Program: collegescholars@jkcf.org
Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship: undergradscholars@jkcf.org
Graduate Scholarship: gradscholars@jkcf.org
Award, bill, payment, or other finance inquiries: finances@jkcf.org

Phone
Toll-free: 800-846-9025
Receptionist: 571-799-8000

Fax
Main fax: 703-723-8030
Finance fax: 571-209-1775