Nominations for the 2021 Spirit of Youth Award are now open, for further information, email Tom McBride or call at (402) 366-6515

Spirit of Youth Award

2021 Nomination deadline April 2, 2021.


The Spirit of Youth Award recognizes a young adult who has made great strides following involvement with the juvenile justice system; has overcome personal obstacles; and is making significant contributions to society.

The award provides an important opportunity to learn from a young person about the hard work and dedication it takes to build a better life, and how juvenile justice professionals and systems can most effectively support the youth they serve. This honors the commitment the young person and those that have supported them to help them find their success.


The award recipient must be:

  • Under 24 years of age,
  • A person who was adjudicated delinquent/involved in the juvenile justice system.
  • Currently involved, directly or indirectly, in bettering the lives of youth; and
  • Nominated by a former system worker or member of the community.


The Nebraska Juvenile Justice Association (NJJA) Board of Directors will review nominations utilizing a rubric. All nominees will be informed of the decision made by February 28th, 2020. The awardee’s nomination will be forward to the National Juvenile Justice Coalition for consideration in the National Spirit of Youth Award. Nomination forms will be seen only by those reviewing nominations to protect confidentiality.


The recipient will be honored at the NJJA Annual Conference at 12:00pm on May 6th, 2021. Due to cancellation of the conference this year, awards presentations are to be determined. The recipient will receive an honorary plaque, a one-time, $500 scholarship to any Nebraska post-secondary institution or training program of the recipient’s choice (must be used within 12 months of receiving the award), free conference registration and travel and/or lodging expenses to attend the NJJA 2021 Annual Conference award ceremony to accept their award. The NJJA conference is held at the Younes Conference Center in Kearney, NE. The recipient will be asked to sign a media release to allow for pictures to be publishing on the NJJA website and social media about their recognition.

Deadline for Nominations

All nominations must be received by April 2, 2021. Electronic submission is encouraged. OR please mail or email 2021 Spirit of Youth Award Nomination Form to:

Tom McBride
Nebraska Juvenile Justice Association
635 South 14th, Suite 200
Lincoln, NE 68508