KCU congratulates Jennifer Ingraham, vice president of Philanthropy and Alumni Relations, as the 2023 recipient of the esteemed Bernard Powell Award. The award is given annually to an alumnus or alumna of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce Centurions program, and is chosen by past award winners.
“Jennifer Ingraham is a champion of women, the arts, healthcare, and the Kansas City philanthropic spirit. She has dedicated her professional career to bettering this city through her roles in the nonprofit sector including the UMKC Foundation, the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Park University, and the Kansas City Symphony,” according to the Chamber’s announcement of the recognition, noting Ingraham’s success in philanthropy for KCU’s new College of Dental Medicine in Joplin, Missouri.
Members of her colleagues in the Centurions remarked that Jennifer carries on the spirit of Bernard Powell through her unwavering commitment and passion for improving Kansas City.
“It is very humbling that a colleague, a peer or a friend thought I was worthy of this acknowledgment,” Ingraham said. “Giving back is how I was raised. It’s a value that was instilled in me simply because my parents volunteered.”
Ingraham believes the award closely aligns with the mission of KCU because of the University’s dedication to educating individuals who will, through their chosen health care profession, devote themselves to improving the well-being of the communities they serve.
Bernard Powell was a Black Civil Rights Activist in Kansas City who founded the Social Action Committee of 20 and led a life of service and advocacy for civil rights. In 1965, he joined Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the Selma-to-Montgomery March.