Dorothy J. Pollon to receive the 2020 Shore-Whitehill Award

Dorothy J. Pollon to receive the 2020 Shore-Whitehill Award

On Sunday, November 1, 2020, The Friendship Circle of Pittsburgh will present the 2020 Shore-Whitehill Award to Dorothy J. Pollon honoring her outstanding voluntary work. The award presentation will occur virtually at 2:00 PM at the conclusion of the Friendship Circle’s Walk 4 Friendship. The Shore-Whitehill Award, created in 1996, is named for Robert Whitehill and the late Barbara Shore and celebrates volunteers who promote inclusion of people with disabilities in the fabric of Jewish life through advocacy or direct service to individuals and families. The award is given annually by Jewish Residential Services and Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh. The Shore-Whitehill Award committee is made up of volunteers from the Jewish Community including past award winners. Recent winners of the Shore-Whitehill Award include: Lisa Lederer, Dr. Matthew Keller, Daniel Leger, Janie Yahr, Judy Greenwald Cohen, and Carol Tabas. Awardees receive an original sculpture by the late Sylvia Plutchok, a Pittsburgh-based artist and recognition at an event planned by the nominating agency.

Dorothy Pollon was nominated by Rabbi Mordy Rudolf, Executive Director of the Friendship Circle of Pittsburgh, where she serves on the Board of Directors and is the chair of the Development Committee.  In his nomination of Dorothy, Rabbi Mordy highlights, “[how she has] dedicated her life to working toward a more inclusive and accessible world for individuals with disabilities. Dorothy has contributed her knowledge of fundraising, development, and disability-related issues to our organization and others doing work in the inclusion field. She has gained immense knowledge throughout her professional career and through her personal experiences which inform her work, and she has been a powerful voice for inclusion in the Pittsburgh community.”

Since 1992, Dorothy has been an advocate for children with special needs, working with families on obtaining appropriate behavioral and medical services, and developing Individualized Education Plans (IEP’s) for their schooling. She has written for and contributed to discrete trial, autism, and sensory processing disorder training programs. She has also worked extensively on in-home and school-based sensory programs, served as an advocate for Medicaid, and met with Congress as an advocate for children with special needs. Dorothy was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation in 2008 and has worked with them for over 10 years in developing various initiatives which build awareness and ensure quality care for patients and their families. Additionally, Dorothy is a longtime board member for the Merakey Foundation based in Philadelphia, a behavioral health organization which provides a range of mandated services across several states, including services for children and adults with intellectual and developmental challenges. She has also worked with numerous other mission-oriented organizations throughout her many years of advocacy.

In her work with The Friendship Circle, Dorothy has been a consistent voice for inclusion and has spoken with passion about her own personal experiences and her hope for a more inclusive world. Serving on the Friendship Circle’s Board of Directors and chairs the Development Committee, playing a large role in the development of the organization, in efforts to broaden our reach, and in working towards sustainability as a nonprofit. Dorothy’s son, Ben Pollon, is a valued member of The Friendship Circle and works at The Friendship Circle as an office assistant. “Dorothy’s dedication to inclusivity on behalf of her family, our members, and our community is something for which we are very grateful. By lending her voice and her time to advocacy, Dorothy has embodied the values of inclusion in her life and been an ally to people of all abilities”, concludes Rabbi Mordy.

The Shore-Whitehill Award event is free, but advance registration via The Friendship Circle of Pittsburgh is required. Click here to register today!