Since its inception in the 1950s, the G.B. Winston Scholarship has stood as a beacon of hope and opportunity for the youth of Sangamon County. Established by the former Executive Director of the Springfield Urban League, Reverend George Beverly Winston, this scholarship embodies the spirit of community empowerment and educational advancement. With its longstanding commitment to supporting the dreams and aspirations of local students, the G.B. Winston Scholarship continues to make a meaningful impact on the lives of countless individuals.

To be eligible for the scholarship, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a first-time graduating high school senior
  • Be a resident of Sangamon County
  • Show proof of maintaining a "C" average during their junior and senior years or demonstrate possible completion in a field of interest (e.g., vocational studies)
  • Demonstrate financial need

(Past recipients of the G.B. Winston Scholarship pictured above.)

Who is G.B. Winston?

Rev. George Beverly Winston, assumed the role of Executive Director of the Springfield Urban League in 1945, marking the beginning of a tenure that spanned fourteen years until 1959. His dedicated service paved the way for significant advancements in community empowerment and educational opportunities.

During his tenure, Rev. Winston spearheaded transformative initiatives, including the establishment of the Carver Trade School in 1946, which provided vital training in the printing trade. This initiative proved instrumental in facilitating the reintegration of returning G.I.s into civilian life, as they availed themselves of educational opportunities afforded by the G.I. Bill of Rights. Notably, the school attracted students from diverse backgrounds, with one individual hailing from as far as the Virgin Islands.

In collaboration with the Welfare Council of Sangamon County, Rev. Winston orchestrated the Urban League's inaugural institute aimed at preparing new board members, thereby strengthening the organization's governance and outreach capabilities.

Rev. Winston's commitment to education and opportunity was further underscored by the establishment of the Springfield Urban League Scholarship Fund, later renamed the G.B. Winston Scholarship Fund, ensuring that deserving individuals could pursue their academic aspirations despite financial barriers.

Beyond his contributions to education, Rev. Winston was instrumental in fostering a spirit of camaraderie and service within the business community through his leadership in founding the Springfield chapter of Frontiers International.

Rev. George Beverly Winston's enduring legacy in Springfield's history embodies compassion, equity, and progress, inspiring generations to advocate for social justice and educational excellence through his visionary leadership.

Rev. George Beverly Winston