2012 Corn Mother Honoree
Amy Banker was born and raised in the small community of Russell, Kansas, one of four girls. Her parents ran a retail business that had been in the family since 1881. Books opened a world of ideas far beyond her farming town, as Amy attempted to read all the volumes in its tiny library. After graduating from the University of Kansas, she moved to the East Coast and then to the West Coast, on a quest for adventure, hoping to bring positive change into the world. Disillusioned by politics in D.C., she worked for grass roots justice movements in Portland, Oregon, such as Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (Northwest Tree Planters and Farm Workers United). In 1998, Amy came to Denver, where she worked at Metro State’s Center for Visual Arts, implementing programs that reached throughout the community and combined her love of arts and learning. In 2007, she joined the Denver Housing Authority in developing the Youth Employment Academy, where she leads young adults in the philosophy, “If you can dream it, you can achieve it.” Amy has a global circle of family and friends, whose love and inspiration have supported her in being able to accomplish her own dreams.
Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.
— Harriet Beecher Stowe
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