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Springfield artist receives national recognition

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Springfield artist Susan Sommer-Luarca is among a group of 106 recipients to be recognized with the 2011 Ellis Island Medals of Honor.

Sommer-Luarca - whose work has been featured on NBC, ABC and CBS, and in the LA Times, Life and People magazines - will be awarded the honor May 6-7 in New York City, according to a news release.

Other recipients of the award this year include:
  • comedian Jerry Lewis;
  • actress Doris Roberts;
  • actor John O'Hurley;
  • National Football League coach Don Shula;
  • Paul Brinkley, U.S. Department of Defense deputy under secretary of defense;
  • Salvatore Cassano, New York City fire commissioner; and
  • Ken Kendrick Jr., owner of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The full list is available online.

The Ellis Island Medals of Honor are presented by the National Ethnic Coalition, an organization that aims to honor and preserve diversity and foster tolerance and respect among religious and ethnic groups, according to its Web site.

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