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Established in 1990, the Pauli Murray Award commemorates the life of the late Reverend Dr. Pauli Murray (1910-1985), a distinguished and remarkable person who confronted discrimination, racism, and sexism in her own life. The Pauli Murray Award is presented annually by the Orange County Human Relations Commission to an Orange County youth, an Orange County adult, and an Orange County business that have served the community with distinction in the pursuit of equality, justice, and human rights for all residents.
This year’s Pauli Murray Awards will be held virtually via Zoom Webinar on Sunday, February 28, 2021 at 3:00 pm. Registration is required. Click here to register.
Nikki Giovanni is a poet, Fisk University graduate, and a University Distinguished Professor at Virginia Tech. Through more than two dozen volumes of poetry, essays, books, and other works, Nikki has raised awareness of social issues of race and gender through writing.
Among Nikki's numerous accomplishments are an unprecedented 7 NAACP Image Awards, a Grammy nomination, a finalist for the National Book Award, over 20 honorary degrees, and 3 "New York Times" and "Los Angeles Times" Best Sellers, which is highly unusual for a poet.
Jaki Shelton Green, ninth Poet Laureate of North Carolina is the first African American and third woman to be appointed as the North Carolina Poet Laureate. She is a 2019 Academy of American Poet Laureate Fellow, 2014 NC Literary Hall of Fame Inductee, 2009 NC Piedmont Laureate appointment, 2003 recipient of the North Carolina Award for Literature. Jaki Shelton Green teaches Documentary Poetry at Duke University Center for Documentary Studies and has been named the 2021 Frank B. Hanes Writer in Residence at UNC Chapel Hill. Her publications include: Dead on Arrival, Masks, Dead on Arrival and New Poems, Conjure Blues, singing a tree into dance, breath of the song, Feeding the Light, i want to undie you. On Juneteenth 2020, she released her first LP, poetry album, The River Speaks of Thirst, produced by Soul City Sounds and Clearly Records. Jaki Shelton Green is the owner of SistaWRITE providing writing retreats for women writers in Sedona Arizona, Martha’s Vineyard, Ocracoke North Carolina, Northern Morocco, and Tullamore Ireland.