FBI Salt Lake City
Press Office
June 28, 2024

FBI Honors Utah Community Leader with National Award

Special Agent in Charge Shohini Sinha presented Zeynep Kariparduc with the 2023 FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA) for her service to the greater Salt Lake area during a ceremony on Friday, June 28, 2024, at the Emerald Hills Institute in Cottonwood Heights, Utah.

Kariparduc serves as Board Member and Director of Community Engagement for Emerald Hills Institute, a non-profit organization whose mission is to build an inclusive community through active conversations among different faiths, cultures, and world views.

In 2023, Kariparduc played an instrumental role securing EHI’s Community Center for All (CCFA). The center serves as a safe haven for many of the members who are immigrants, refugees, or of Muslim faith. She is regarded as a lifelong educator, interfaith and community leader, and a professional Turkish artist in Utah.

Kariparduc’s work greatly impacts the FBI’s mission because it helps breaks barriers with members of the Muslim and refugee communities in Utah. She spearheads many educational programs and community events which allows for FBI interaction and education to foster a more inclusive state.

“The relationship we have with Zeynep is extremely valuable,” SAC Sinha said. “She is a strong supporter of our outreach program and has helped the FBI and law enforcement build bridges with underserved communities. For her dedicated service to the citizens of Utah, the FBI proudly honors her with the Director's Community Leadership Award."

Kariparduc was also recognized at a ceremony for all 2023 DCLA recipients at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. on April 24, 2024, with FBI Director Christopher Wray.

The DCLA was formally created in 1990 to honor individuals and organizations for their efforts in combating crime, terrorism, drugs, and violence in America. Recipients of this award are recognized for their service above and beyond the call of duty to help keep America and its residents safe and are selected based on nominations from each of the FBI’s 56 field offices.

Learn more about the DCLA: Director’s Community Leadership Award — FBI