Xfinity series pilot Josh Williams, Sherry Pollex and Jes Ferreira have been selected as the finalists for the 2022 Comcast Community Champion of the Year award.
The award was created to recognize the philanthropic efforts of individuals within the NASCAR industry.
The 2022 Comcast Community Champion of the Year will be selected by a panel of executives from Comcast and NASCAR, as well as Curtis Francois, owner of World Wide Technology Raceway, who received the award in 2021 for his work with The Raceway Gives Foundation, which is focuses on STEM education and diversity.
Comcast will award $60,000 to the champion’s affiliated charity and $30,000 to each of the charities selected by the remaining two finalists. The 2022 Comcast Community Champion will be announced at a reception during NASCAR Champions Week.
Comcast’s Xfinity brand entered NASCAR as a Title Partner of the NASCAR Xfinity Series in 2015 and is now a Premier Partner of the NASCAR Cup Series as well. Since then, the company has donated $840,000 to more than 21 different NASCAR-affiliated organizations to honor their efforts and help further the impact of their worthy causes. Fans can visit ComcastCommunityChampion.com to learn more about past and present finalists and their selfless acts.
Comcast Community Champion of the Year 2022 Finalists:
joseph williams — Many would argue that despite his NASCAR resume, Josh Williams, driver of the #92 DGM Racing car for the Xfinity Series, has even more impressive accomplishments off the track. Throughout his career, Josh has spent his time visiting over 150 hospitals in person and recently even more via Zoom during the pandemic. Through these visits, he has had the opportunity to meet with countless children, as well as their families, to show them his support.
As an extension of these visits, Josh enlisted the help of OhmniLabs to use their telepresence robots, which provide the opportunity for some of these children to virtually experience garage tours of the track from their hospital beds. Josh’s efforts have also formed a relationship with the Ryan Seacrest Foundation, which builds closed-circuit TV and radio studios in children’s hospitals across the country to increase the experiences of patients who can’t make the journey to the track.
To show his support for these children to the world, Josh collects a painted handprint from each child he visits. For his final race of each NASCAR season, his race car is wrapped with a composite image of the handprints of each of those children, honoring them and the work of children’s hospitals around the world.
Sherry Pollex — After being diagnosed with stage 3c ovarian cancer, Sherry Pollex knew she wanted to help others who would one day be overtaken by this terrible disease.
In 2016, Sherry launched SherryStrong.org; a website created to empower women to know their bodies and recognize the symptoms of ovarian cancer with a focus on healthy living through holistic and integrative medicine. However, the launch of Sherry Strong was not the beginning of Sherry’s community outreach efforts, but rather a continuation of them.
Sherry Strong serves as an arm of the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization she developed with her longtime partner, Martin, in 2007. The foundation was originally formed to help children with cancer . When Sherry received her diagnosis, the foundation’s mission was refocused to raise awareness, drive advocacy and generate financial support for underfunded cancer initiatives specific to childhood and ovarian cancer; two of the most prevalent and underfunded diseases affecting children and women in the United States today.
Through SherryStrong.org, social media channels, and appearances across the country, Sherry has spent years educating women about the choices they have for their bodies, integrative and holistic medicine, self-care practices like yoga, acupuncture, exercise , meditation, supplements and more. Sherry inspires women every day to find joy in the midst of life’s trials and not let illness rob them of gratitude or peace. Sherry educates women on the symptoms of ovarian cancer and how to continually fight back until the answers are found.
Jesus Ferrera — Amidst all the turmoil of the pandemic, CSM Production’s Senior Director of Live Shows, Jes Ferreira, looked for an opportunity to give back. Despite her heavy workload, she decided to take on an even bigger challenge, becoming a foster mother to two girls ages 5 and 8.
Jes originally obtained a foster license to become a foster parent to a child, but a few months later, the child’s younger brother needed a new foster home. Although Jes already had a crazy work schedule that included traveling to the race track most weekends in addition to raising a child as a single mom, he knew without a doubt that these two brothers deserved to be together while in foster care. . Now, two little brothers who are going through the most difficult time of their lives have been reunited thanks to the generosity and big heart of Jes.
On any given day, there are almost 424,000 children in foster care in the United States. In 2019, more than 672,000 children spent time in foster care in the US. On average, children remain in state care for more than a year and a half, and five percent of children in foster care they have languished there for five years or more. Now, Jes has given two of those nearly half a million children a safe home, as well as new experiences that will help improve their lives.
Jes’s affiliated charity is Foster Village Charlotte, an organization that allows foster parents to connect and support each other. FVC collaborates with 16 private foster parent licensing agencies, local government, child welfare organizations and the community to serve families holistically and represent the voice of the foster family to the Department of Social Services (DSS) of Mecklenburg County.