Joe Vaughn of Woodruff, SC has been chosen as one of four finalists for The NASCAR Foundation’s ninth annual Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award. The award, named in honor of the foundation’s late founder and chairwoman, is presented to a NASCAR fan who has done exceptional volunteer work on behalf of children in their community.
A month-long online vote will determine the award winner. If Vaughn wins, the NASCAR Foundation will donate $100,000 to Project HOPE Foundation in his honor.
Vaughn has been supporting Project HOPE Foundation, a non-profit organization offering a lifespan of autism services, since 2005. He currently serves as the organization’s Board Chair, a position he’s held since 2010. Vaughn has devoted countless amounts of time, energy and money to support HOPE’s mission, despite having no direct ties to autism. Vaughn is always thinking outside the box about ways to broaden HOPE’s reach, like putting the logo on dump trucks, cement mixers and most recently, a race car, through a sponsorship in Project HOPE Foundation’s name.
“Joe Vaughn is one of the most kind, generous, caring people you will ever meet,” says Project HOPE Foundation Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Lisa Lane. “He gives selflessly, and he helps simply because he wants to.”
Under Vaughn’s leadership, HOPE has grown to 7 campuses across Upstate South Carolina and quadrupled in size. “Joe doesn’t have any direct ties to autism, but he has become an autism expert and advocate at will,” says HOPE Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Susan Sachs. “He’s helped us find new property and design spaces to meet the autism population’s unique needs.”
Fans can vote online for their favorite Champion for Children at nascarfoundation.org/award, once a day – every day – until December 3, 2019 at 5pm ET. The winner of the $100,000 will be announced on December 5. The NASCAR Foundation will donate $25,000 to each of the other three finalists’ charities.
About Project HOPE Foundation
Project HOPE Foundation provides a lifespan of services for the autism community, through programs that help families, open minds, promote inclusion and expand potential. We are broad in our scope, serving across ages (from two to young adults), across the spectrum of autism, and across programs (ABA therapy, classroom options, adult employment, social groups, life skills, community outreach, professional training). Founded in 1997 by moms looking for services for their young sons with autism, Project HOPE Foundation offers programs that benefit the child affected with autism as well as the entire family. www.projecthopesc.org