The Orange County Human Relations Commission is holding the 29th Annual Pauli Murray Awards on Sunday, Feb. 24, from 3-5 p.m. at the Whitted Building (300 W. Tryon St. in Hillsborough). The award is presented annually to an Orange County adult, business and/or youth that embody the attributes and spirit of Dr. Pauli Murray by serving the community with distinction in the pursuit of equality, justice and human rights for all citizens.
This year’s ceremony will honor Lorie Clark as the adult awardee and Joe Van Gogh as the business awardee. Ms. Clark has spent a large portion of her career as staff with the Blue Ribbon Mentor Advocate Program of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, where she provides students opportunities, resources, and enrichment to be successful in high school and beyond. Joe Van Gogh is owned by Robbie Roberts, who values diversity in his establishment and shows appreciation for employees by being certified as an Orange County Living Wage employer.
The keynote address will be given by Dr. Blair L.M. Kelley, Assistant Dean for Interdisciplinary Studies and International Programs for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at North Carolina State University. Kelley has been a guest on NPR’s Here & Now, MSNBC’s Melissa Harris Perry Show and Countdown with Keith Olbermann, Democracy Now, and WUNC’s The State of Things. She has also provided expert commentary for the New York Times, The Washington Post, The Melissa Harris Perry Show, and The Associated Press. She has written for The Washington Post, TheRoot.com, TheGrio.com, Ebony.com, Salon.com, and Jet Magazine. She is also the author of "Right to Ride: Streetcar Boycotts and African American Citizenship in the Era of Plessy v. Ferguson," which won the 2010 Letitia Woods Brown Best Book Award from the Association of Black Women Historians.
Come out to honor the legacy of Dr. Pauli Murray and show appreciation for this year’s winners and the quality contributions they make to Orange County. A reception will follow the ceremony.