Mellody Hobson



Each fall, an outstanding senior from each of the four-year degree-granting institutions of higher learning in Illinois is awarded the Abraham Lincoln Civic Engagement Award and thereby becomes a Student Laureate of The Lincoln Academy of Illinois. In the spirit of Lincoln, Student Laureates are honored for their leadership and service in the pursuit of the betterment of humanity and for overall excellence in curricular and extracurricular activities.

Proceeds from the Annual Convocation Celebration are used toward the Student Laureate Program.

Since the program’s inception in 1975, over 2,000 students have been so honored.

Supporters of the Lincoln Academy of IllinoisBeth & Ed HowardEmily, Andrea & Dr. Brian BearWanda & Don Tracy, Lincoln LegacyCourtney Shea, Lincoln LeadershipMajor General John Borling (USAF-ret)Dr. Vera & Frank ClarkThe Lincoln Academy of Illinois


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previous Laureates

Edward L. McMillan

Nancy Goodman Brinker

Chad Pregracke

The Lincoln Academy of Illinois


To honor individuals whose outstanding contributions to the betterment of mankind have been accomplished in or on behalf of the State of Illinois, or whose achievements have brought honor to the State because of their identity with it, whether by birth or residence, or by their dedication to those principles of democracy and humanity as exemplified by the great Illinoisan whose name we bear. These individuals, reflective of the diverse populace of the State of Illinois, are named Laureates of the Academy and receive the “Order of Lincoln,” the State of Illinois’ highest award, at an annual Convocation.

To honor one outstanding senior from each of the four year not-for-profit degree granting institutions and one outstanding senior from among all of the community college students who, in the spirit of Abraham Lincoln, demonstrated leadership and service in his or her campus or community and excellence in curricular and co-curricular programs, to be named Student Laureates and receive the Abraham Lincoln Civic Engagement Award and the Lincoln Medallion.

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Laureate John H. Bryan

Our condolences to the family of Laureate John H. Bryan

Our condolences to the family of Laureate John H. Bryan, who was named as a laureate in 1993 at a Convocation ceremony held on the DePaul University campus in Chicago at the Merle Reskin Theatre.

John H. Bryan was a 1993 Lincoln Laureate in the area of Business and Social Services. He was a Mississippi native who moved to Chicago in 1969 and was the 1992 Crain’s Chicago Business Executive of the Year. Under his leadership as Chairman of the Board and CEO, Sara Lee Corporation contributed to non-profit organizations promoting culture and the arts and providing assistance to the needy and disadvantaged. Bryan was honored by the French Republic with the Legion of Honor for his cultural and civic contributions, including playing a major role in the United State’s participation in the French Bicentennial celebration.

Chicago Sun Times Article