Governor Steve Beshear's Communications Office
Gov. Beshear Hosts Kentuckians at 2014 Governor’s Prayer Breakfast, Presents William Cooper Award

Press Release Date:  Thursday, March 13, 2014  
Contact Information:  Kerri Richardson
Terry Sebastian

Kentucky native, Denver Bronco tight end Jacob Tamme delivers keynote address

FRANKFORT, Ky.— Governor Steve Beshear today hosted Kentuckians from across the Commonwealth at the 2014 Governor’s Prayer Breakfast and presented the William Cooper Award for faith and service to the late R.J. Corman and to Elizabeth’s Place, a transitional home for women and children.

Kentucky native and current NFL tight end Jacob Tamme delivered the keynote address.

The Governor’s Prayer Breakfast is a long-standing tradition in Kentucky dating back to 1965 and includes representatives of all three branches of government. Each year, this nondenominational gathering provides Kentuckians with an opportunity to give thanks for blessings and ask for strength to lead the Commonwealth toward a better future.

“For decades, the prayer breakfast has provided the opportunity for people to slow down for a moment, take a deep breath and reflect on how to personally grow and serve during the upcoming year,” said Gov. Beshear. “Today’s breakfast is about recommitting to our faith and remembering to work together to make Kentucky a better place now and for generations to come.”
The keynote speaker at this year’s breakfast was Tamme, a tight end for the 2014 American Football Conference Champion Denver Broncos. Tamme was born in Danville, Ky., and went on to play college football at the University of Kentucky and graduated with a Master of Business Administration degree before being drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in 2008. Tamme has played in two Super Bowls and received many athletic and academic accolades throughout his career, including the prestigious Bobby Bowden Athlete of the Year Award from the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in 2007.

Tamme’s family still lives in Kentucky, and he keeps strong ties with his hometown, supporting the local community and speaking out about the importance of faith and family in both his personal and professional life. He and his wife, Allison, are founders of the “Swings for Soldiers Classic” charity event to benefit wounded soldiers. The money raised from the golf classic goes directly to “Homes for Our Troops,” a program that builds specially adapted homes for wounded veterans.

William Cooper Award
The William Cooper Award is given annually at the Governor’s Prayer Breakfast to a Kentuckian or group of Kentuckians who embody the heart of the Commonwealth, working tirelessly in service to others with a motivation of faith and leaving a lasting impact. For the first time, this year’s award was presented to both an individual and a group.

The individual award was presented posthumously to Kentuckian R.J. Corman for his remarkable character and philanthropic efforts. Corman, a highly successful railroad entrepreneur, was most known for his infectious, inspiring spirit and will be remembered for his generosity and devotion to giving and community service. Corman passed away in August 2013 after a long battle with cancer.

The group award was presented to Elizabeth’s Place, a transitional home for women and children. Located in Georgetown, Elizabeth’s Place provides housing to homeless families working toward self-sufficiency. The home’s staff provides case management, financial counseling and referrals to additional support services while they help women stabilize their lives and find permanent housing.

Kentucky Student Leadership Seminar
In conjunction with the Governor’s Prayer Breakfast, the Governor is hosting college students from across the Commonwealth for the annual Kentucky Student Leadership Seminar. Each year, all Kentucky colleges and universities, both private and public, are asked to submit the names of two students to attend the seminar.

The students are treated to a day of guest speakers from government, business and academia, and are provided the opportunity to network with fellow student leaders, sharing best practices of principled leadership on college campuses.