2023 NFDW Humanitarian Award Winner

Rita Demopoulos Haggardt was a teacher at a local elementary school for 32 years and was honored as the 2023 NFDW Humanitarian Award winner. Rita’s commitment to education continues today with the Southeast Idaho Retired Teachers Association, Delta Kappa Gamma, Idaho State University’s College of Education, and the former I Love ISU Calling campaign to raise money for student scholarships. She also created a $20,000 endowment at Idaho State University entirely through contributions from her retired teacher’s income.

Rita has been a strong supporter of the IDWC since its inception and has served in many capacities as a result. She is the 2016 IDWC Dottie Stimpson Award Winner, which is our “worker bee” award. She has been a huge supporter of Democratic candidates through the years by phone banking, door-knocking, and donating money to help their campaigns as well.

One of Rita’s greatest accomplishments has been founding My Brother’s Table in Pocatello, which provides a free meal for the hungry every Sunday over 35 years ago. She also assists with the Portneuf Valley Interfaith Fellowship’s Feeding the 5000 campaign as well. She also did not let cancer treatment, or the pandemic stop her in her efforts to serve others. She continues to help to feed the homeless by showing up rain or shine to ensure that the least fortunate among us have a hot meal.

We believe that Rita’s dedication is an example to all of us that age has no barrier when it comes to improving human and civil rights in our communities.