James Lawson, pastor emeritus of the Holman United Methodist Church in Los Angeles, received the 2005 Distinguished Alumnus Award from Vanderbilt University. In fact, Lawson never earned a degree from the university. He was expelled from the Vanderbilt University Divinity School in 1960 because of his participation in lunch counter sit-ins in Nashville. After a major controversy on campus including the resignation of several faculty members, a compromise was later reached that permitted Lawson to return to Vanderbilt. But he decided to finish his divinity studies at Boston University. A long time ago he reconciled his differences with Vanderbilt and even spent a year on campus during a sabbatical.

Cato Laurencin, Lillian T. Pratt Distinguished Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Virginia, will be presented with the Nicolas Andry Award from the Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons at their annual convention this coming April in Buenos Aires. Dr. Laurencin is being honored for his work in the field of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.

David Swinton, president of Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina, was presented with the Samuel Z. Westerfield Award by the National Economic Association. The award, named after a former U.S. ambassador to Liberia, is given to a black economist in recognition of his or her scholarly achievements, institutional leadership, or service to the community.


Copyright © 2006. The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education. All rights reserved.