FBI Chicago Announces Recipient of Director’s Community Leadership Award
CHICAGO—Jeffrey S. Sallet, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced today Concepcion Rodriguez has been named the 2018 recipient of the FBI’s Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA) for the Chicago Division. For over a decade, Mrs. Rodriguez has served the Chicago area as a community activist who specializes in giving gang intervention presentations at local schools and organizations to educate parents, teachers, and students about the realities of gang life. Mrs. Rodriguez is also a former gang member and currently a local funeral director.
The FBI presents this award annually on behalf of its Director, Christopher Wray. It was established in 1990 as a way to honor individuals and organizations for their efforts to prevent federal crimes and to enhance law enforcement efforts in their communities.
Mrs. Rodriguez was selected by the Chicago Division for the direct and positive impact her work has had on the community. Her presentation, “Tough Talk/Straight from the Funeral Home,” is dramatic and inspired by her first-hand experience of burying over 200 youths involved with gangs. While speaking to at-risk youth, Mrs. Rodriguez will stand at the front of a full-size casket that has a mirror inside. She then invites each of the attendees to come to the casket and look into the mirror telling them “This could be you, but it doesn’t have to be”.
“The creative and innovative way Mrs. Rodriguez reaches out to young people has made her an invaluable resource—not only for law enforcement – but for all of the Chicago area as she does her part to combat violent crime,” said SAC Sallet.
An awards presentation honoring Mrs. Rodriguez is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on April 24, 2019, at the FBI Chicago Field Office, 2111 W Roosevelt Road, Chicago. She will also join DCLA recipients selected by other FBI field offices across the nation at an awards ceremony to be held in Washington, D.C., on May 3, 2019, where she will be personally recognized and honored by Director Wray.