Mayor Jackie Biskupski named ‘Person of the Year’ by Utah Valley University’s Office for Global Engagement
SLC’s acting director of Economic Development also honored for efforts in bringing United Nations conference to City
Today, Utah Valley University’s Office for Global Engagement recognized Mayor Jackie Biskupski and acting director of Salt Lake City’s Department of Economic Development Ben Kolendar with two of their annual UVU Atlas Awards. Mayor Jackie Biskupski was honored as ‘Person of the Year’ and Ben Kolendar received the ‘Utah Business/Government’ award.
Each year the UVU Office for Global Engagement recognizes individuals or organizations who have supported, promoted, or advanced the organization’s global mission to empower students to become competent and confident leaders and world citizens through creating opportunities for successful experiences in a globally interdependent community.
The awards were presented today as part of UVU’s Utah Diplomatic Conference on International Trade Relations. Mayor Biskupski and Ben Kolendar were honored for their work in bringing the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference to Salt Lake City in August of this year.
“Led by Mayor Biskupski and Ben Kolendar, Salt Lake City made history this year by hosting the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference—the first time a UN gathering has been hosted on US soil outside of New York City,” said Baldomero Logo, UVU’s Chief International Officer. “By partnering with UVU’s Office for Global Engagement to bring this prestigious conference to Utah, Mayor Biskupski and Ben Kolendar helped elevate the state’s voice in the global conversations around sustainability and inclusivity, while demonstrating how Salt Lake City and other Utah stakeholders are making a difference globally. The faculty, staff, and students of UVU’s Office for Global Engagement are grateful for their work and are honored to present them with two of this year’s Atlas Awards.”
In August 2018, Mayor Biskupski led a delegation from Utah to UN Headquarters in New York City to announce that Salt Lake City had been selected to host the 2019 Civil Society Conference. Under the theme of Building Inclusive and Sustainable Cities and Communities, the Conference convened at the Salt Palace between August 26th and 28th. The Conference attracted more than 5,000 attendees from over 130 countries, with more than 40% between the ages of 18 and 32.
“I am truly humbled to receive the Person of the Year Atlas Award from UVU’s Office for Global Engagement,” said Mayor Jackie Biskupski in receiving the award. “The UN Civil Society Conference was not only a chance for our region to once again welcome the world, but to demonstrate that places like Salt Lake are more committed than ever to tackling issues from climate change to inequality. It was also an opportunity to send a message to the world that America’s cities are still in when it comes to global engagement.”
“To pull off an event of this scale required the commitment and cooperation of so many in our community, including City, State, and County level governments, non-profit partners, and hundreds of volunteers,” said Ben Kolendar who was tasked by the mayor to lead the City’s efforts in planning the UN event. “I am grateful to all of those who gave their time and talents to make the UN event happen and to UVU for recognizing these efforts.”
To learn more about UVU’s Office for Global Engagement visit: https://www.uvu.edu/global/
To learn more about the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference visit: https://www.slc.gov/mayor/un-conference/