With an extra-special nod to Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood

By Meghan Overdeep
August 22, 2019

It's been almost a year since George H.W. Bush passed away at the age of 94, and his family is still finding new ways to preserve the 41st president's legacy of kindness.

In a Wednesday appearance on Today, granddaughter Lauren Bush Lauren, 35, announced the launch of the inaugural George H.W. Bush Points of Light Award, which celebrates individuals changing the world through volunteerism and philanthropy.

The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Award will be given to two well-known philanthropists as well as two people from different walks of life. And the first recipient of the prestigious award is none other than country singer Garth Brooks.

"We chose Garth because he is, actually, beyond being an extremely talented singer and songwriter, an amazing philanthropist," Lauren explained to co-host Savannah Guthrie, adding that Brooks' foundation Teammates for Kids has raised more than $100 million dollars for kids' causes. He and his wife Trisha Yearwood also do a lot of work with Habitat for Humanity.

"They're very hands-on-volunteers, and just do a lot of good," the philanthropist and entrepreneur added," but do it in a way too that's kind of humble, and I think, in a way that my grandfather would have really appreciated."

Points of Light was started more than 30 years ago by President Bush as a way to encourage volunteerism and recognize people who are doing great work in their community.

"With his passing, we just thought it was a really wonderful opportunity to shine an extra light on a few individuals who are really making the world a better place," said Lauren.

"I think what was such a standout during his passing...was just how kind and how empathetic [he was] and how he really made a point of going out of his way to be kind and make those gestures," she continued, "to write that letter that was really meaningful to someone, to say hello to a waiter, to ask them about their family."