➣ Annual Opus Peace Award
Each year, Opus Peace recognizes someone whose personal and professional life acts as a beacon for peace. Nominees must demonstrate leadership in addressing the SOUL INJURY that veterans and traumatized people often experience. This year, for the first time, we have TWO recipients: Amber Nikolai Public Relations Director, Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs and Tracy Rosinski, Manager of Business Development at Heartland Home Health Care & Hospice, Green Bay.
Amber Nikolai and Tracy Rosinski
You two are a team who know how to work together in a partnership that exemplifies the leadership required to bring attention to SOUL INJURY — a topic that most people avoid. You two have had the courage to not only raise awareness about SOUL INJURY, but to address it, TOGETHER. I cannot tell you how proud Opus Peace is of both of you and how inspired we are by your devotion to the men and women who have served our country and communities. In fact, our whole team has been so inspired by you two, that we are launching a campaign to name 9-11 as “National Soul Injury Awareness” day in your honor.
Amber, you are an Iraq War veteran, and you have taken the needs and concerns of your comrades to heart, “rallying the troops”at King Veterans Home and us at Opus Peace to get the job done. Your passion is fierce, tireless, and unrelenting. And I know this passion comes from a single source – your love for your fellow comrades.
Tracy: You are NOT a veteran, which in some ways make your contributions even more remarkable. Your compassion for responding to the soul injuries that Veterans, First Responders, and traumatized people have sustained is nothing short of astonishing. You demonstrate to every civilian here the responsibility that we have, as citizens, to help heal our nation after war and trauma. You demonstrate to every organization how agencies such as Heartland Home Care and Hospice can be trustworthy stewards of veterans’ and first responders’ hopes for healing soul injuries.
Jim Rudolph 2014 Recipient
It is with great respect and admiration that the first Opus Peace award is presented to Jim Rudolph, proprietor of Veterans Funeral Care in St. Petersburg Florida. Jim’s passion for Veterans and their families is quickly evident to anyone who is around him for even a few minutes. His courageous advocacy for responding to the Soul Injuries that veterans and their families sustain has allowed Opus Peace to develop a powerful, effective ceremonial workshop. “I heard the term ‘soul injury’ and something leapt out. I had to respond because I had listened to the stories of hundreds of Veterans and their families and ‘soul injury’ captured what I had heard. Now, I’ve used the term with others and they have the same reaction. I just want to help as many veterans as possible have the opportunity to heal from their soul injuries.” Jim and Veterans Funeral Care sponsored the first Soul Injury Ceremonial Workshop that allowed a national prototype to be developed. When asked to provide the opening welcome at the workshop, Jim said: “I’d rather not. I’m doing this for the Veterans. I don’t need to get anything else out of it. I just want to be in the background and support what you are doing to heal soul injuries. I don’t even want our logo used. No one needs to know.” Humility…Thank you Jim for reminding us how it creates the space so we can be fueled by Grace.