Stephens received the recognition for his work with the Kids Center for Pediatric Therapies, for which he recently was named a board member. The agency, located on Eastern Parkway, provides outpatient therapy and family support services for children with such development disabilities as Down syndrome, autism and cerebral palsy.

“It’s really exciting and it’s a great recognition,” Stephens said. “It’s a buildup of a lot of small things.”

Stephens’ award included $1,000 for the Kids Center. He also competed in and won a Facebook and ticket sales contest with the other four honorees and earned the Kids Center another $2,000 from the Community Foundation of Louisville.

The Kids Center plans to divide the $3,000 equally to support initiatives including:

  • Fund therapy for children whose families are unable to pay. A year’s worth of therapy costs about $1,000. 
  • Sustain the Cards for Kids program, a marketing and development internship for UofL students at the Kids Center. Stephens and student Katlyn Nasseri founded the program.
  • Start a match program to purchase iPads for therapists to use to, among other things, teach children handwriting and to help nonverbal children learn to communicate effectively. The Cards for Kids program is organizing the match program and is taking donations.