Giraffe Heroes Database
Letter "V"
Entries beginning with "V"

Van Duyne, Margaret

Margaret Van Duyne of Brighton MA has put in years of round-the-clock days getting new immigrants up and running on productive new lives. Her non-profit, One with One, matches newcomers with citizen mentors who coach them on US language, work and customs.

  • community development
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Massachusetts
Home when commended: North America, US, Massachusetts
Home now: North America, US, Massachusetts
Gender: F (female)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Van Ee, Jeffrey

Environmental scientist Jeffrey van Ee of Las Vegas NV was threatened with dismissal by the EPA for speaking out against a waste of taxpayers' money by the Department of the Interior. Van Ee responded with a legal challenge to his Agency's gag rule on what employees say on their own time, as citizens. Van Ee won.

  • government
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Nevada
Home when commended: North America, US, Nevada
Home now: North America, US, Nevada
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

van Heerden, Ivor

Scientist Ivor van Heerden had warned New Orleans and the Army Corps of Engineers about the disaster that a major storm would bring, but nothing was done. After Hurricane Katrina proved van Heerden right he pressed for rebuilding that would solve the original problems. His reward was being fired from the Louisiana State University Hurricane Center along with his entire team.

  • public safety
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Louisiana
Home when commended: North America, US, Louisiana
Home now: North America, US, Louisiana
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Van Hengel, John

John Van Hengel lived a high and fast youth in Beverly Hills, but in 1967 chose a life of cast-off clothes, rattletrap cars and small, shabby apartments. Van Hengel started St. Mary's, the world's first food bank, gleaning surpluses from grocery stores. He went on to organize the national Second Harvest programs, and an information clearinghouse for food banks around the world.

  • poverty
Giraffe work location(s): National
Home when commended: North America, US, Arizona
Home now: North America, US, Arizona
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Van Leer, Carlos

For over three decades, long past normal retirement age, Carlos Van Leer has been a regular fixture at demonstrations and political gatherings, singing his a message of peace and justice with lyrics he created. He was the official church jester of St. Stephen and the Incarnation Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C., but the “official” title didn’t keep the police from arresting him time after time.

  • international peace
Giraffe work location(s): North America, U.S., Washington, D.C.
Home when commended: North America, U.S., Washington, D.C.
Home now: deceased
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

van Rossum, Maya

Maya van Rossum combined her legal training and her knowledge of the environment and came up with a way to be one of the most unpopular people in the Delaware River flood plain. As head of Delaware Riverkeeper, van Rossum has worked against a proposed plan to stop floods in the area by telling its proponents that it’ll never work. She’s also protected the river from the Army Corps of Engineers, new dams and expanded airports.

  • environment
  • government
  • public safety
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Pennsylvania; Delaware
Home when commended: North America, US, Pennsylvania
Home now: North America, US, Pennsylvania
Gender: F (female)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Van White, Whitney

Whitney Van White of Atlanta GA leads Black Teen Advancement, a program that greatly reduced violence in Atlanta schools. Van White and BTA members mediate interschool rivalries, putting themselves on the line to prevent violence.
  • ethnicity/minorities
  • public safety
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Georgia
Home when commended: North America, US, Georgia
Home now: North America, US, Georgia
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Vande Zande, Ernest

Ernest Vande Zande of Vancouver WA risked his financial security and his place in competitive shooting to conduct a successful campaign that made the US Olympic shooting team independent from the National Rifle Association.

  • business/workplace issues
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Washington
Home when commended: North America, US, Washington
Home now: North America, US, Arizona
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Vantine, Bruce

Bruce Vantine of Saint Louis MO formed and funds a professional vocal and brass ensemble called the Cornerstone Chorale. Its performances are all tied to the theme of social justice, and have received rave reviews for both their musical quality and their social impact--ticket sales go to nonprofit causes.

  • poverty
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Missouri
Home when commended: North America, US, Missouri
Home now: North America, US, Missouri
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Vanunu, Mordechai

Mordechai Vanunu of Jerusalem, Israel, was imprisoned for treason after blowing the whistle on his government's illegal production of nuclear weapons. Held in solitary confinement, he became the subject of an international campaign to secure his release.

  • international peace
  • whistle blowers
Giraffe work location(s): Asia, Israel
Home when commended: Asia, Israel
Home now: Asia, Israel
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Varela, Maria

  • community development
  • poverty
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, New Mexico
Home when commended: North America, US, New Mexico
Home now: North America, US, New Mexico
Gender: F (female)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Vargas, Philip

Philip Vargas of Arlington VA was a respected government official until he wrote a report on government secrecy that ruffled too many feathers. When the report was suppressed, Vargas went public, saying the citizens have the right to know how their government is functioning, or failing to do so. Fired and blackballed, Vargas has not changed his opinion of the rights of citizens.

  • business/workplace issues
  • government
  • whistle blowers
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Washington DC
Home when commended: North America, US, Virginia
Home now: North America, US, Virginia
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Vargha, Janos

Biologist Janos Vargha of Budapest, Hungary, lost his job as a science writer for fighting loudlu against the building of a huge dam on the Danube River. He founded the Danube Circle, an environmental group that continues to fight governmental and industrial leaders trying to dam the great river.

  • environment
  • whistle blowers
Giraffe work location(s): Europe, Hungary
Home when commended: Europe, Hungary
Home now: Europe, Hungary
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Varnadore, Charles

Mechanic Charles Varnadore reported dangerous practices to managers at the Oak Ridge nuclear weapons facility, and when they failed to end the threats to workers and to public safety, he talked to the media about suspiciously high cancer rates in and around the plant. Management's response was to move Varnadore, a recovering cancer patient himself, into “work spaces” filled with radioactive wastes, asbestos, mercury, and hundreds of other chemicals. Varnadore sued, becoming an inspiration to other whistle-blowers.

  • health/public health/disabilities
  • public safety
  • whistle blowers
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, Tennesse
Home when commended: North America, US, Tennesse
Home now: deceased
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Velasquez, Alejandro

Alejandro Velasquez, Angie Camacho, Paloma Camacho, Sarah Cardona, Fernando Becerra, Annette Martinez, Dana Page, Horacio Romero, Rosalinda Ugalde and Raul Velasquez are leaders of Earth Niños at the Humphreys School in East Los Angeles. Giving up endless hours of their own time and braving the ridicule of other kids, these 6th-graders planted more than 100 trees at their school and at Occidental College, beautified their neighborhood by planting flowers, picked up tons of litter on their school grounds and around the neighborhood, and led Los Angeles' Unified School District in starting an aluminum recycling project.

  • environment
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, California
Home when commended: North America, US, California
Home now: North America, US, California
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.

Velasquez, Raul

Raul Velasquez, Angie Camacho, Paloma Camacho, Sarah Cardona, Fernando Becerra, Annette Martinez, Dana Page, Horacio Romero, Rosalinda Ugalde and Alejandro Velasquez are leaders of Earth Niños at the Humphreys School in East Los Angeles. Giving up endless hours of their own time and braving the ridicule of other kids, these 6th-graders planted more than 100 trees at their school and at Occidental College, beautified their neighborhood by planting flowers, picked up tons of litter on their school grounds and around the neighborhood, and led Los Angeles' Unified School District in starting an aluminum recycling project.

  • environment
Giraffe work location(s): North America, US, California
Home when commended: North America, US, California
Home now: North America, US, California
Gender: M (male)
For more information, click on the Giraffe's name.
Powered by Sigsiu.NET

Giraffe Hero Search

Search for:
Name
Field(s) of Giraffe work
Location
Gender
Age when commended
Occupation

Share Giraffe

| Click here to share...