(Whoever writes press releases at Time Turner, it’s RoSSana Rosado, not RosaNNa Rosado… btw. thanks.)
Beginning at 1 pm ET and continuing hourly through 10 pm on Thursday, October 1, CNN’s Anderson Cooper will announce a Top 10 2009 CNN Hero, culminating in an 11 pm ET special called Change the World, You Vote, CNN Heroes¸ spotlighting all Top 10 CNN Heroes. The Top 10 Heroes announcements will also be featured on CNN.com, HLN, CNNI, CNN Radio and CNN en Espanol.
Culled from over 9,000 submissions – a new record for the CNN HEROES initiative, which began in 2007 – and selected by an esteemed Blue Ribbon Panel, these Top 10 CNN Heroes will each receive a $25,000 award at CNN HEROES: AN ALL-STAR TRIBUTE, airing Thanksgiving, November 26, at 9 pm ET on CNN. One Top 10 CNN Hero will be named CNN HERO OF THE YEAR, as voted upon by the public via cnn.com/Heroes, and will be awarded an additional $100,000. Hosted by Anderson Cooper at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, the November gala is the only awards show of its kind – featuring celebrities honoring everyday people who have made an extraordinary difference in their communities and beyond. The broadcast will air globally on CNN, CNN International and CNN en Espanol. Voting for the CNN Hero of the Year will commence at 11 pm ET on October 1, and continue until 6 am ET on November 19, 2009.
Below is the list of the 2009 Top 10 CNN Heroes. Please note the time at which each Top 10 2009 CNN Hero will be announced; all times are Eastern. The information about each Top 10 CNN Hero is strictly embargoed until the time listed, and may not be posted or reported before then. Please do not report the entire list of Top 10 CNN Heroes until 10 pm ET on October 1.
1pm – JORGE MUNOZ, QUEENS, NY: School bus driver Jorge Munoz is helping hungry New Yorkers make it through tough times. Since 2004, he has handed out more than 70,000 meals from his mobile soup kitchen in Queens — for free.
2pm – JORDAN THOMAS, CHATTANOOGA, TENNESSEE: Jordan Thomas, 20, lost both of his legs in a boating accident in 2005. Since then, his Jordan Thomas Foundation has raised more than $400,000 to provide prosthetics for children in need.
3pm – BUDI SOEHARDI,SINGAPORE: Budi Soehardi founded a children’s home in one of the poorest areas of Indonesia. Today, Roslin Orphanage in West Timor provides food, shelter and education to more than 45 children.
4pm – BETTY MAKONI,ESSEX, ENGLAND: Zimbabwe native Betty Makoni founded the Girl Child Network to provide a haven for young victims of sexual abuse. The organization has rescued more than 35,000 girls since 2001.
5pm – DOC HENDLEY, BOONE, NORTH CAROLINA: Bartender Doc Hendley is providing clean water to communities worldwide. Through creative fundraising, his nonprofit Wine to Water has brought sustainable water systems to 25,000 people in five countries.
6pm – EFREN PENAFLORIDA, THE PHILLIPINES: Efren Peñaflorida gives Filipino youth an alternative to gang membership through education. His Dynamic Teen Company’s 10,000 members have taught basic reading and writing to 1,500 kids living in the slums.
7pm – DERRICK TABB,NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA: Derrick Tabb started The Roots of Music to give young people an alternative to New Orleans’ streets. His music education program provides free tutoring, instruments and music instruction to more than 100 students.
8pm – ROY FOSTER,WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA: Army veteran Roy Foster started Stand Down House to help veterans struggling with addiction and homelessness in Florida. Since 2000, his program has provided life-changing services to nearly 900 veterans.
9pm – ANDREA IVORY,MIAMI, FLORIDA: Breast cancer survivor Andrea Ivory is bringing early detection to the doorsteps of uninsured women. With mobile mammography vans, her group has provided more than 500 free screenings.
10pm – BRAD BLAUSER,DALLAS, TEXAS: Brad Blauser, currently residing in Baghdad, is providing hope and mobility to disabled children and their families in Iraq. Since 2005, his Wheelchairs for Iraqi Kids program has distributed nearly 650 free pediatric wheelchairs to children in need.
This year’s Blue Ribbon Panel includes retired Retired Gen. Colin Powell, Whoopi Goldberg, Ted Turner, Shakira, Rossana Rosado, Mariane Pearl, Malaak Compton-Rock, and Sir Elton John, among other humanitarians.
More information, including video of the Top 10 CNN Heroes, links to the Heroes’ organizations, and highlights from previous CNN HEROES programming can be found at CNN.com/Heroes. To download art of any of the Top 10 CNN Heroes, please visit: