Greatest American Hero?
With only two weeks left in voting, CNN Hero of the Year nominee Doc Hendley will be honored at a celebratory rally at the N.C. State campus in Raleigh on Thursday.
Hendley started Wine to Water, a non-profit based in Boone, in 2004.
The organization is dedicated to providing clean water to those without across the world. To date, the organization has provided clean water to approximately 25,000 people in refugee camps, orphanages, schools, hospitals and a leper colony, as well as directly into hundreds of homes through the installation of bio-sand filters in Sudan, India, Ethiopia, Uganda and Cambodia.
Hendley was first featured in May as a community crusader hero, one of 28 heroes featured on the program between February and September. The CNN series received more 9,000 submissions from 100 countries for heroes to be featured.
A panel of CNN judges chose 20 to move on to the Blue Ribbon Panel, which was then narrowed to the Top 10 Heroes of 2009. Judges include actress Whoopie Goldberg, singer-songwriter Sir Elton John, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Turner Broadcasting founder Ted Turner, and, fittingly, Masi Oka, Golden Globe and Emmy-nominated actor and star of NBC's Heroes.
Hendley was chosen as one of the top ten and will be featured during an All-Star Tribute to air on Thanksgiving on CNN at 9 p.m. Hendley will be awarded $25,000 as one of the top ten.
During the special, the Hero of the Year will be announced. The winner will receive an additional $100,000.
The rally to be held at N.C. State will be attended by Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker and N.C. State Chancellor Jim Woodward. The event begins at 12 p.m.
The Hero of the Year will be determined by public online voting. Online voting at http://www.cnn.com/heroes will continue through Nov. 19 at 6 a.m. There is no limit to how many times a person can vote.