Media - Newsroom/Press

CHARLOTTE, NC (October 11, 2012) - On Thursday October 4, 2012, some of Charlotte’s most prominent individuals gathered in the confines of Founder’s Hall/Booth Playhouse in the Bank of America Building to support the Thurgood Marshall College Fund’s (TMCF’s) 9th Annual Awards of Excellence, which raised over $90K to support the organization’s programs and initiatives.

The event is part of a nationwide effort to inform the broader community about TMCF and to raise funds to aid scholars who attend 47 public Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The award recipients were outstanding individuals who were deserving of community recognition for their efforts in the Charlotte area, as well as in their career fields.

The 2012 Awards Recipients included: Dianne Ward English, Executive Director, Community Building Initiative; James E. Ferguson II, Esq., Founding Partner, Ferguson, Stein, Chambers, Adkins, Gresham & Sumter, P.A.; Kevin A. Henry, Senior Vice President & Chief Human Resources Officer, Snyder’s-Lance, Inc., and Edward P. O’Keefe, Esq., Executive Vice President & General Counsel, Bank of America.

A few notable guests included: Congressman Mel Watt, Attorney Julius Chambers, Keith Grandberry, President & CEO of the Winston-Salem Urban League; Patrick Graham, President & CEO of the Central Carolinas Urban League; Dr. Ron Carter, President, Johnson C. Smith University; Bob Brown and Gigi Dixon, Senior Vice President, Director of National Partnerships, Strategic Philanthropy and Partnerships, Wells Fargo

Sterlin Benson Webber served as host for the evening and Ann Caulkins, Publisher & President, The Charlotte Observer and Nicole W. Dean, VP of Corporate Human Resources & Chief Diversity Officer, Belk, Inc. served as co-chairs of the event.

The Charlotte Awards of Excellence was the third regional event held this year. Prior events include Miami and New Jersey, and the final regional event of the year will take place on November 1, 2012, in Chicago. To date, TMCF have invested more than $200 million in scholarships, programmatic and capacity support and leadership development to the 47 HBCUs that make up TMCF member-schools. 92% of the student population that attend public HBCUs heavily relies on financial support to pursue a degree. Events like the Charlotte Awards of Excellence graciously salute our very deserving award recipients, supporters and individuals, who contributed to the over $290,000 raised this year from the past three events.

For sponsorship opportunities and ticket information for the Chicago event, please email Mary V. Jones at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it g or call 201-227-8427. For media inquiries please email Janeen Blige at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 212-573-8548.

The Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) is named for the U.S. Supreme Court's first African-American Justice. Established in 1987, TMCF supports and represents nearly 300,000 students attending its 47 member-schools that include public Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), medical schools and law schools. TMCF helps students with a clear intention and the motivation to succeed and acquire a high-quality college education at an affordable cost. TMCF also efficiently connects high performing, world-ready students with top tier employment opportunities—access that students or employers might not have on their own. Through its scholarships and programs, TMCF plays a key role in preparing the leaders of tomorrow. TMCF is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, charitable organization. For more information about TMCF and its initiatives, visit: www.ThurgoodMarshallCollegeFund.org.