Please vote for Michael Jackson

A recent Duluth East graduate, Michael Jackson, is one of four finalists for a NASCAR-sponsored humanitarian award. He has already generated a $25,000 donation to the Starlight Children’s Foundation by being a finalist; the winner will be able to direct $100,000 to the charity of his or her choice.

The process involves online voting at nascar.com/award. There are stories and videos about the finalists, and the voting process. A person can vote daily until the end of November. If you were so inclined to visit the link, view the video and story, and vote (daily if possible), and send this info and link to bunches of people … that would be great.

Michael is an amazing young man, he started studies last week at the College of St. Scholastica, planning to go into pediatric psychology. He has cerebral palsy, confined to a wheelchair, has undergone over sixty surgeries (at one point when he was four years old, he had ten surgeries in twelve weeks), yet he is filled with optimism and is committed to helping make the world a better place.

Michael has been recognized for numerous humanitarian efforts: volunteering at Essentia Health, fundraising for ALS, Polinsky Rehab, the Starlight Children’s Foundation, Susen G. Komen and more.

In 2005 Michael was a featured speaker at the Starlight Children’s Foundation annual gigantic fundraiser in Beverly Hills. He was also the recipient of the Junior Journey Award from Essentia Health, recognizing how people who live with disabilities adapt and achieve.

All of the finalist are deserving because of the way they give back. Please visit nascar.com/award and vote.

Michael is my son, my wife and I used to refer to him as “our blessing later in life,” indeed watching him grow into young adulthood has been incredible. We learned early on that Michael has the ability to significantly impact the people around him.

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