Spirit of Democracy honorees: David Honig, Minority Media & Telecommunications Council; Shawn Dove, Campaign for Black Male Achievement Open Society Foundations; Al Dotson, 100 Black Men of America; Melanie L. Campbell, The National Coalition; Jonathan McDaniel, actor; Vivica A. Fox, host; and Richard Womack, Sr., The National Coalition.
WASHINGTON, DC - On May 17th, hundreds gathered at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill for the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation's (The National Coalition) 15th Annual Spirit of Democracy Awards Gala that honored six phenomenal men doing constructive work to empower the African American community.
Hosted by actress and producer Vivica A. Fox, musical performances were provided by Demetria McKinney, recording artist and star of Tyler Perry's House of Payne who performed her newest song "Take Away," and the People's Community Baptist Church Men's Choir from Silver Spring, MD opening the event with soulful gospel hyms.
“It was important to take a moment to lift up and celebrate what the brothers are doing in our communities across the country,” said president and CEO of The National Coalition, Melanie L. Campbell. “The men who dedicate their lives to mentoring, social justice, training and creating opportunities for our youth - especially those running black male initiatives - are truly the fabric of our community.”
In accepting the Visionary Leadership and Community Empowerment Award, Shawn Dove, Campaign Manager for Open Society Foundation's Campaign for Black Male Achievement said, “There is no cavalry coming into our community to save the day. The iconic leaders that we are waiting for are already here.” Dove continued, “The answers lie in the hands, the hearts, and the heads of young black men that are in our community everyday. We've got to applaud them, we've got to lift them up and we have to support them.”
In addition to Dove, the 2012 Spirit of Democracy Award recipients are Jonathan McDaniel, actor, recording artist and technology advocate; David Honig, founder and president, Minority Media & Telecommunications Council; Joshua DuBois, executive director, The White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships; Gerald Hudson, executive vice president, Service Employees International Union; and Al Dotson, chairman of the board, 100 Black Men of America, Inc.
Demetria McKinney, recording artist and actress performed a medley of hits from Chaka Khan and Whitney Houston.
Spirit of Democracy Awards Gala 'Celebrates Our Brothers' honorees and special guests: William Kellibrew IV, The National Coalition; Richard Womack, Sr., The National Coalition; Jonathan McDaniel, honoree; Debra Speed, Verizon; Al Dotson, honoree; Donna Frisby Greenwood, Knight Foundation; Melanie L. Campbell; Tanya Lombard, AT&T; Shawn Dove, honoree; Joshua DuBois, honoree.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL COALITION
Founded in 1976, the NCBCP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to increasing African American participation in civil society. The current programs and initiatives of the organization include Black Youth Vote!, Black Women's Roundtable, and a Black Men & Boys Initiative. The National Coalition has trained and engaged African American leaders and community activists in overcoming institutional barriers that have hindered the growth of Black communities politically, socially and economically. For more information on The National Coalition and to view video from the event, visit http://www.ncbcp.org/.
Photo credit: C-it Visual