ASPEN, Colo. (11/6/08)--William Bynum, founder of the Hope Community CU in Jackson, Miss., is one of five finalists for the inaugural John P. McNulty Prize. The prize was created to help address social, economic and political challenges of the time. The $100,000 McNulty Prize winner will be announced tonight at the Aspen Institute Leadership Awards, to be moderated by Barbara Walters. Bynum founded the $63.5 million asset credit union to serve the "unbanked" of the Mississippi Delta region. The credit union has helped thousands of members get resources they needed to rebuild their lives and homes after Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast area in 2005. The other finalists are:
* Dr. Jordan Kassalow, chairman and co-founder of VisionSpring, which delivers affordable reading glasses to poor communities; * Patrick Awuah, founder of Ashesi University, the first liberal arts college in Ghana; * Mehrdad Baghai, founder of High Resolves Initiatives, Australia, which teaches high school students about leadership; and * Sylvia Gereda, founder of Switch, a magazine by and for young people in Guatemala.