JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Jacksonville Jaguars ended a special season this weekend, and for the leader of a Jacksonville non-profit, it’s one she’ll never forget.
904WARD’s Chief Executive Officer Dr. Kimberly Allen won the NFL team’s inaugural Duval Diversity Playmaker Award earlier this month.
For Allen’s family, the Jags stadium will always hold a special memory – the night the team recognized the 904WARD CEO for her work to make Jacksonville a better place to live.
“When I found out I was getting the award, I cried like a baby,” Allen said.
The honor is for individuals who make a difference in social justice, and 904WARD's mission is to end racism through meaningful dialogue.
“The work we do every day to champion diversity in our city to make sure that people see themselves represented here,” Allen said. “We really want this to be a choice destination for people to bring their families, their businesses, their children.”
It happened at the game against the Titans about two weeks ago.
Allen said having her three children and husband alongside her on the field to accept the award meant everything.
“I could not do this work without their support,” Allen said. “It means a lot of hard work, a lot of tough conversations in our household, and it was one of the ways where they got to see the proof, really, of the labor that we put in as a family.”
As a Jacksonville native, Allen said she’s thrilled to have an organization like the Jags recognize 904WARD’s dedication to the community.
“Having the message: it’s in the end zone,” Allen said. “It takes all of us to end racism in the north and south end zones. I think it’s evolving. Not just the Jaguar’s commitment, the NFL’s commitment, but also our city’s commitment to this work.”
The Jags gave her a jersey with “Dr. Allen” printed on the back. She said it’ll go with the rest of her family’s Jags memorabilia.