Ithaca, N.Y. — Mayor Svante Myrick was named the recipient of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library Foundation’s “New Frontier Award” on Thursday, according to a press release from the organization.
“My grandfather believed that talented young Americans can fulfill our country’s promise through public service,” said Jack Schlossberg, John F. Kennedy’s grandson and a member of the New Frontier Award Committee, in a press release. “Svante Myrick’s leadership is helping to build a better future for the city of Ithaca.”
Also winning the award was Nina Dudnik, Founder and CEO of Seeding Labs, an innovative nonprofit that “empowers talented scientists in developing countries to conduct life-changing research.”
The John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and Harvard University’s Institute of Politics started the award to honor Americans under age 40 who “are changing their communities and the country with their commitment to public service,” according to the Associated Press.
The press release said the following about Ithaca’s mayor:
“Svante Myrick became Ithaca’s youngest mayor in 2011, at the age of 24. Since his election, he has championed innovative partnerships and development to spur economic growth and entrepreneurship in Ithaca. Under his leadership, Ithaca has enjoyed the lowest unemployment rate in the state of New York. Myrick also revised zoning policies aimed at increasing downtown Ithaca’s density and livability, and encouraged the adoption of a living wage for city workers. Myrick, whose childhood included periods of homelessness and poverty, began his political career while he was an undergraduate at Cornell University, when he sought and won a seat on the Ithaca Common Council.
Previous award winners include US Senator Cory A. Booker and Mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti.