Honors & Awards

Talladega College Recognizes Its President by Naming a New Building in His Honor

Talladega College Recognizes Its President by Naming a New Building in His Honor

The board of trustees of historically Black Talladega College in Alabama voted to name the newly constructed 47,000-square-foot student center/arena in honor of the college’s 20th and current president, Billy C. Hawkins. Dr. Hawkins has led the college since 2008.

Ann Brothers Smith Honored by the American Association of University Administrators

Ann Brothers Smith Honored by the American Association of University Administrators

Dr. Smith, a retired public school administrator, has served as a member of the West Virginia State University Board of Governors since 2011, serving as chair, vice chair, and chair of several board committees. She is the former associate superintendent for school leadership for the Detroit public school system.

Fatimah Jackson to Receive the Charles R. Darwin Lifetime Achievement Award

Fatimah Jackson to Receive the Charles R. Darwin Lifetime Achievement Award

Fatimah Jackson is a professor of biology and the director of the W. Montague Cobb Research Laboratory at Howard University in Washington, D.C. She is the first woman of African descent to receive this prestigious award from the American Association of Physical Anthropologists.

Three Black Women Named Winners of National Book Critics Circle Awards

Three Black Women Named Winners of National Book Critics Circle Awards

Each year, the National Book Critics Circle presents awards for the finest books published in English in six categories: Fiction, Nonfiction, Biography, Autobiography, Poetry, and Criticism. Three of the six winning authors this year are Black women. Each has some ties to higher education.

Cornell University's Derrick Spires Wins the St. Louis Mercantile Library Prize

Cornell University’s Derrick Spires Wins the St. Louis Mercantile Library Prize

The award, given by the Bibliographical Society of America, honors research in the bibliography of American literature and history. Dr. Spires is an associate professor of English at Cornell University. He joined the faculty last fall after teaching at the University of Illinois.

A Trio of African American Men Receive Notable Honors and Awards

A Trio of African American Men Receive Notable Honors and Awards

The honorees are J. Marshall Shepherd, the director of the atmospheric sciences program at the University of Georgia, H. Carl McCall, former chairman of the State University of New York Board of Trustees, and Linwood Whitten, director of diversity and international affairs at Alabama State University.

Texas Woman's University Scholar to Be Honored by the Public Leadership Education Network

Texas Woman’s University Scholar to Be Honored by the Public Leadership Education Network

Mary Saunders, a retired major general of the U.S. Air Force and the founding executive director of the Jane Nelson Institute for Women’s Leadership at Texas Woman’s University, has been selected to receive a lifetime achievement award from the Public Leadership Education Network.

Four African American Scholars Receive Notable Honors or Awards

Four African American Scholars Receive Notable Honors or Awards

The honorees are Paul Adams of the University of Arkansas, Constance Smith Hendricks of Tuskegee University in Alabama, Sakeena Everett of the University of Georgia, and the late Judge Damon Keith, a distinguished alumnus of Howard University School of Law.

University of Chicago Scholar Receives Book Award From the College Art Association

University of Chicago Scholar Receives Book Award From the College Art Association

Darby English, the Carl Darling Buck Professor of Art History and the director of the Scherer Center for the Study of American Culture at the University of Chicago, was selected to receive the Frank Jewett Mather Award for Art Criticism from the College Art Association.

Four Black Faculty Members Receive Notable Honors and Awards

Four Black Faculty Members Receive Notable Honors and Awards

The honorees are Tressie McMillan Cottom of Virginia Commonwealth University, Mejai Bola Mike Avoseh of the University of South Dakota, Cle Cousins of the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, and Derek D. Bardell of Delgado Community College in New Orleans.

Suzanne L. Weekes Received Teaching Award From the Mathematical Association of America

Suzanne L. Weekes Received Teaching Award From the Mathematical Association of America

Suzanne L. Weekes, a professor in the mathematical sciences department at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts, has received the prestigious Deborah and Franklin Tepper Haimo Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching of Mathematics.

Duke University School of Medicine Honors the Late Brenda Armstrong

Duke University School of Medicine Honors the Late Brenda Armstrong

Duke University commissioned a portrait of Dr. Brenda Armstrong, who was the second Black woman in the United States to become a board-certified pediatric cardiologist. She served as a professor of pediatrics, associate dean for admissions, and senior associate dean for student diversity, recruitment, and retention at the university’s medical school.

David Williams II to Be Honored Posthumously by the National Collegiate Athletic Association

David Williams II to Be Honored Posthumously by the National Collegiate Athletic Association

The late David Williams II, the former athletic director at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, is the 2020 winner of the NCAA president’s Pat Summitt Award. The award honors an individual who has demonstrated devotion to the development of college athletes.

Kishauna Soljour Receives Dissertation Award From the Council of Graduate Schools

Kishauna Soljour Receives Dissertation Award From the Council of Graduate Schools

In 2019, Kishauna E. Soljour became the first Black woman to receive a Ph.D. in History from Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in New York. Her doctorate dissertation was recently honored by the Council of Graduate Schools.

Former Tennessee State University Faculty Member Given Posthumous Honor

Former Tennessee State University Faculty Member Given Posthumous Honor

The Tennessean, the daily newspaper in Nashville, has named a conference room in its headquarters to honor the late Getahn Ward, a reporter for the paper and an alumnus and adjunct faculty member at historically Black Tennessee State University.

Hampton Honors Dean With More Than 50 Years of Service to the University

Hampton Honors Dean With More Than 50 Years of Service to the University

Jewel B. Long, dean of residence life at Hampton University in Virginia, is stepping down from her post. In recognition of her 54 years of continuous service to the educational institution, Hampton University is naming the lobby of a residence hall in her honor.

University of Georgia's John Mativo Honored by the Society of Automotive Engineers

University of Georgia’s John Mativo Honored by the Society of Automotive Engineers

John M. Mativo, an associate professor in the department of career and information studies in the College of Education at the University of Georgia, was recognized as the Society of Automotive Engineers’ Outstanding Faculty Advisor.

Winston-Salem State University Honors Retiring Chief of Police

Winston-Salem State University Honors Retiring Chief of Police

Patricia Norris stepped down as chief of campus police at Winston-Salem State University on December 31. Her husband, Robert Norris, made a secret donation to the university so that the police and public safety building on campus would be renamed in her honor.

University of Kansas Renames its Integrated Sciences Building for Bernadette Gray-Little

University of Kansas Renames its Integrated Sciences Building for Bernadette Gray-Little

Dr. Gray-Little became the 17th chancellor of the University of Kansas in 2009. She is the only woman to serve in that role. Dr. Gray-Little stepped down as chancellor after the 2016-17 academic year.

Tulane University Honors Its First African American Students

Tulane University Honors Its First African American Students

In 1966 and 1967, Deidre Dumas Labat and Reynold T. Décou became the first African American undergraduates to earn degrees from Newcomb College and Tulane University, respectively. The university recently renamed a residence complex in their honor.

Rice University Lecturer Wins the 2019 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence

Rice University Lecturer Wins the 2019 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence

The award has been given out for the past 13 years by Baton Rouge Area Foundation. It recognizes the work of African American fiction writers and honors the legacy of author Ernest J. Gaines who died last month.

Pamela Bracey Is Named Collegiate Teacher of the Year in Business Education

Pamela Bracey Is Named Collegiate Teacher of the Year in Business Education

Pamela Bracey, an associate professor in the department of instructional systems and workforce development in the College of Education at Mississippi State University, was named Collegiate Teacher of the Year by the National Business Education Association.

Texas A&M University's Roderic Pettigrew Honored by the National Academy of Engineering

Texas A&M University’s Roderic Pettigrew Honored by the National Academy of Engineering

Professor Pettigrew’s award was given “for leadership at the National Institutes of Health, and for academic and industrial convergence research and education, resulting in innovations that have improved global health care.”

University of Georgia Scholar Honored by the American Educational Studies Association

University of Georgia Scholar Honored by the American Educational Studies Association

Cynthia B. Dillard is the Mary Frances Early Professor of Teacher Education in the department of educational theory and practice of the College of Education at the University of Georgia. Dr. Dillard was honored at the association’s annual conference in Baltimore earlier this month.

Vanderbilt University Names Its Recreation and Wellness Center for David Williams II

Vanderbilt University Names Its Recreation and Wellness Center for David Williams II

David Williams II was the first African American to serve as a vice chancellor at Vanderbilt. He also was the first African American to serve as an athletics director in the Southeastern Conference. He died earlier this year at the age of 71.

International African-American Historical and Genealogy Society Book Award to Walter Curry Jr.

International African-American Historical and Genealogy Society Book Award to Walter Curry Jr.

Walter B. Curry Jr., who teaches online graduate courses in the master of education degree program at Claflin University in Orangeburg, South Carolina, was honored for his book on the Thompson family of Salley, South Carolina.

John Morrow Is the First African American to Win Prestigious Award for Military Writing

John Morrow Is the First African American to Win Prestigious Award for Military Writing

John H. Morrow, Jr., professor of history at the University of Georgia, is the 13th recipient of the Pritzker Military Museum & Library Literature Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing. The award includes a gold medallion and a $100,000 honorarium.

Tina Harris Given Distinguished Scholar Award from the National Communications Association

Tina Harris Given Distinguished Scholar Award from the National Communications Association

Tina M. Harris holds the Douglas L. Manship Sr.-Dori Maynard Race, Media, and Cultural Literacy Endowed Chair at the Manship School of Mass Communication at Louisiana State University. She joined the faculty at LSU this past summer after teaching at the University of Georgia for more than two decades.

Florida A&M University Honors Student Who Died Serving His Country as a Tuskegee Airman

Florida A&M University Honors Student Who Died Serving His Country as a Tuskegee Airman

Lt. James Polkinghorne, Jr. was a senior at Florida A&M University when he enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps. During a combat mission over Italy on May 5, 1944, Lt. Polkinghorne’s plane was shot down. His body was never found. A campus residence hall is being named in his honor.

Louisiana State University Scholar of Media History Has an Award Named in Her Honor

Louisiana State University Scholar of Media History Has an Award Named in Her Honor

The Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication has announced the establishment of the Jinx Coleman Broussard Award for Excellence in the Teaching of Media History. Dr. Broussard is the Bart R. Swanson Endowed Memorial Professor in the Manship School of Mass Communications at LSU.

First Black Graduate of Syracuse University's College of Law Posthumously Admitted to the Bar

First Black Graduate of Syracuse University’s College of Law Posthumously Admitted to the Bar

William Herbert Johnson was the first African American to graduate from the College of Law at Syracuse University. Recently, he was posthumously admitted to the New York State Bar Association 116 years after graduating.

Florida Gulf Coast University Names Its Library After Its Former President Wilson Bradshaw

Florida Gulf Coast University Names Its Library After Its Former President Wilson Bradshaw

Dr. Bradshaw served as the university’s president from 2007 to 2017. During his decade in office, enrollment increased by 60 percent to nearly 15,000 and the number of degrees granted annually doubled.

North Carolina A&T State University Names Its College of Business and Economics

North Carolina A&T State University Names Its College of Business and Economics

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in Greensboro has announced that will name its College of Business and Economics after Willie A. Deese. This is the first time that a person has been used in a college’s name at the university.

Framingham State University to Honor its First Black Graduate: Mary Miles Bibb

Framingham State University to Honor its First Black Graduate: Mary Miles Bibb

After graduating in 1843, Bibb went on to become one of the first African American woman teachers on the continent. She opened several schools for Black children during a 23-year teaching career in Canada. The university will rename a residence hall in her honor.

University of Georgia to Rename Its College of Education to Honor Its First Black Graduate

University of Georgia to Rename Its College of Education to Honor Its First Black Graduate

Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes were the first African American students to enroll at the University of Georgia in 1961. But Mary Frances Early was the first African American to earn a degree from the University of Georgia. She was awarded a master’s degree in music education in August 1962.

Harold Martin Sr. to Receive the Educational Leadership Award From the TMCF

Harold Martin Sr. to Receive the Educational Leadership Award From the TMCF

Harold L. Martin Sr., chancellor of North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, has been selected to receive the Educational Leadership Award from the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. He will be honored at the association’s Anniversary Awards Gala on October 19 in Washington, D.C.