Tai R. and You H. Shin Establish Humanitarian Award with $2 Million Gift

Jul 25, 2022 10:29 AM
Tai R. (Terry) Shin and You H. (Catherine) Shin

The award will honor extraordinary humanitarians and provide funding to programs at the University of Illinois.

The University of Illinois System is pleased to announce an award has been established to honor individuals who have had an exemplary impact on humanity. This new award is thanks to Tai R. (Terry) Shin and You H. (Catherine) Shin, who have generously pledged $2 million to establish the Dr. Tai R. Shin and Mrs. You H. Shin Humanitarian Award.

The Shin Humanitarian Award will be given to individuals and organizations that promote the betterment of society; exhibit courage and integrity to better lives; improve environmental sustainability; take action on equality issues; or strive in other ways to protect human rights and the human condition. Recipients of the annual Shin Humanitarian Award will be invited to present a lecture on the campus of their choosing and will have the opportunity to select a college or department at one of the University of Illinois campuses to receive funds distributed from the Shin’s endowed gift to be used at the discretion of the department. 

“We have always been interested in promoting humanity by mutually respecting and dignifying one another to help ultimately enhance peace and love,” said Terry and Catherine Shin. “We hope this gift and award will help recognize others that are doing this work.”

Shin, who has both his master’s and a doctorate in food science and human nutrition from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), founded Swagger Foods Corporation in 1978. He has steadily grown this business over the years to supply a wide range of customers in the industrial and retail markets. Dr.  and Mrs. Shin have made other notable philanthropic contributions, including scholarships and a gift to UIUC for its Food Science Pilot Plant renovation.

“We are honored the Shins have established this humanitarian award and appreciate their continued loyalty and support,” said University of Illinois System President Tim Killeen. “This gift is particularly important because it provides recognition for our alumni, faculty, and others who are respected individuals devoted to making our world a better place.”

Honorees will be selected by a diverse committee of faculty, academic professionals, and students convened by the president of the University of Illinois System.