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Prairie Meadows recognized for philanthropic contributions to Iowa

19 October 2012

Des Moines, Iowa -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- Prairie Meadows has been selected the 2012 Iowa Restaurant Association Restaurant Neighbor Award winner and national award nominee in the large business category. Prairie Meadows Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Ann Atkin accepted the award on behalf of the entertainment facility at the Restaurant Association’s annual awards ceremony and gala.

“More than 90 percent of hospitality establishments give back to their communities through philanthropic programs. The Restaurant Neighbor Award recognizes and celebrates those contributions,” said Jessica Dunker, president and CEO of the Iowa Restaurant Association. “Prairie Meadows is not only one our industry’s philanthropic leaders, they are also one of the Greater Des Moines area’s most charitable organizations.”

State and National Recognition

The Restaurant Neighbor Award honor was presented to Atkin by the Chairmen of both the Iowa Restaurant Association and National Restaurant Association Board of Directors Mike Rastrelli of Clinton, Iowa and Phil Hickey of Atlanta, Georgia. Prairie Meadows was also recognized with other state winners by the National Restaurant Association at their annual legislative event in Washington D.C.

Minority Scholarship Program

In 2011 Prairie Meadows made $38 million in cash contributions to community projects. However it was one project in particular that caught the attention of the awards committee—their founding role in the establishment of the Luther and Willie Glanton Scholarship program. The scholarship was created to honor a husband and wife who dedicated their lives to professional leadership and community service. He was the first African American judge in Iowa; she was the first African American female assistant county attorney and the first African American person from Polk County to serve in the Iowa Legislature. The scholarship provides greater access to medical and health sciences education for minority students at Des Moines University.

“Ours is an industry of opportunity,” said Dunker. “This scholarship program is also a commitment to providing opportunity by making it possible for more people to pursue their careers of choice.”

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