The International Center presented the 2022 International Citizen of the Year (ICY) award to Tamika Catchings during its annual award dinner and fundraiser at the Indiana Roof Ballroom on Tuesday, October 18.
Catchings, best known for her fifteen seasons as the WBNA Indiana Fever’s franchise player, is a four-time Olympic gold medalist, local business owner and philanthropist.
Rick Fuson, the chief executive officer of Pacers Sports & Entertainment, presented the award to Catchings.
The event also honored Yaza Swe, manager of employment programs for Exodus Refugee Immigration, Inc., with the Global Impression Award (GIA).
Over the past 12 years, Swe has connected thousands of refugee clients from across the globe to resettle their new lives in Indiana and find meaningful employment and support their families. Originally from Burma, Swe is also involved with the Burmese American Community Institute (BACI) in Indianapolis and has volunteered as a Natural Helper with the Immigrant Welcome Center.
International Center board member Kevin Henderson and 2021 GIA winner Andrea Richter-Garry co-presented the award to Swe.
Priscila Vansetti, the vice president of crop protection strategy and planning at Corteva Agriscience and board chair of The International Center, said, “It was her athletic talent that first brought Tamika to Indiana, but it’s her actions off the court that make her our International Citizen of the Year. Tamika is dedicated to uplifting the community towards success – and she has elevated our state on the global stage in the process.”
“Another example of global leadership is Yaza Swe,” Vansetti added. “It is an honor to highlight a foreign-born Hoosier with the Global Impression Award to celebrate his impact as an advocate and ally for immigrants and refugees in Indiana.”
The other Global Impression Award finalists were Tiffany Hanson, director of MBE and strategic initiatives with the Morales Group, and Olanike Olaniyi, collection development librarian with the Indianapolis Public Library. Swe is the fourth winner of the Global Impression Award, which was first established in 2018.