Governor Rell & Senator Boucher Announce Wilton’s Madaras Among Finalists Considered for Prestigious National Citizen Award

March 9, 2010

Governor M. Jodi Rell and State Senator Toni Boucher (R-26th) today announced that Bill and Shalini Madaras of Wilton are among 20 finalists being considered for the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation’s Citizen Above Self Honors award.

The Madaras, nominated by Governor Rell last month, are ten finalists in the category for people who demonstrate a prolonged series of selfless acts. Two other Connecticut residents are also being considered for the Citizen Above Self Honors award for their single acts of extraordinary heroism – Tom McGuire of Meriden and Peter Procyk of Stratford.

Bill and Shalini founded Kick for Nick and Female Soldiers: Forgotten Heroes (FSFG). After losing their son to a roadside bomb on September 3, 2006, the Madaras have continued fulfilling their son Nick’s mission: Kick for Nick, distributing soccer balls to Iraqi and Afghani children as an opportunity for soldiers to connect with the children they safeguard. They have received recognition from General David Petraeus and other senior military officials for the significant impact of Kick for Nick. For more information on Kick for Nick, please visit

In addition, the Madaras helped lead an effort to develop Female Soldiers: Forgotten Heroes (FSFH). They are determined to establish Connecticut’s first transitional supportive housing facility exclusively for female veterans who are homeless and having trouble returning to civilian life.

“It is impossible for a lot of us to understand and know what Bill and Shalini have gone through over the past four years with the loss of their son. However, what we do know is that Bill and Shalini have an unwavering dedication to helping others and are committed to honoring the memory of their son through awe-inspiring acts of their own,” said Governor Rell. “They have started a national movement that represents what their son Nick stood for – goodwill, kindness and friendship.”

“Bill and Shalini embody all that is exceptional about our state and our nation through their highest ideals of valor and service,” said Senator Boucher. “Faced with tragic loss, they have been able to turn something so horrible into something so good and so remarkable. They are not only an inspiration to their friends and neighbors in Wilton but they are truly national and international heroes.”

From the ten finalists in the “single act of extraordinary heroism” category and the ten finalists “prolonged series of selfless acts” category, three individuals will be selected by a second panel of Medal of Honor recipients to receive the Citizen Service Above Self Honors award. The winners will be announced on Monday, March 22 and honored at a ceremony on Thursday, March 25 in a ceremony in the shadow of the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington Cemetery in Washington D.C.

The Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to perpetuate the Medal of Honor’s legacy of courage, sacrifice and patriotism. For more information on the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation, please visit