NCCJ 2012 Citation Award BanquetBy Yasmine Regester
Published: November 16, 2012
The National Conference for Community and Justice of the Piedmont Triad, Inc. (NCCJ) held its 46th Annual Brotherhood/Sisterhood Citation Award Dinner on November 8, at the Greensboro Coliseum.
More than 1200 community members attended the annual banquet which recognizes residents of the Piedmont Triad region who have made significant contributions towards creating a community free of bias, bigotry and racism. This year’s award recipients were Dr. Harold L. Martin Sr., chancellor of North Carolina A&T State University; and Zaki Uddin Khalifa, owner of Zaki Oriental Rugs in High Point.
Martin was acknowledged for his dedication to breaking down bigotry and racism through higher education and ensuring that students who attend Historically Black Colleges and Universities receive an equal education to those at majority universities.
Tom Ross, president of the University of North Carolina system presented Martin with his award saying, “Harold knows the importance of diversity in education. He’s making N.C. A&T one of the best public universities in the state. He truly has made a positive difference in the lives of thousands of
A graduate of A&T, Martin also served as chancellor at Winston Salem State University from 2000-2006. Martin said, “I am deeply honored. We’re really here to celebrate the remarkable work of NCCJ. This award recognizes a modest portion of the things I’ve learned from my parents and mentors in life.”
He added, “It’s my belief that education changes lives and the lives of the people around us.”
A native of Pakistan, Zaki Khalifa was recognized for his mission to fostering the development of people of all cultures and beliefs through his support of community initiatives that foster those same values.
“Zaki works to create understanding between cultures and religions. His life story embodies what it means to expand horizons and build bridges across cultures,” said Director of NCCJ, Susan Feit. “Being honored is a wonderful feeling. Every human being is capable of untold work. There is a need to promote understanding between different ethnic groups in our country and around the world,” said Khalifa who has hosted numerous forums in the community on diversity and accepting others.
The Citation Award Dinner also spotlights NCCJ’s community outreach activities, including its ANYTOWN high school program.
2012 ANYTOWN Delegate Kristen Whitworth presented the audience with her experience at ANYTOWN, “The things I learned were life changing,” said Whitworth. “I learned about accepting others no matter race, religion or creed and took what I learned back to my home, school and community.”
NCCJ launched its “Hate Hate?” campaign in August following the murder of six Sikhs in Wisconsin. In September and October, NCCJ also encouraged ANYTOWN youth participants to continue the campaign in their own schools. The project is aimed at educating people on the dangers of bias, bigotry and
Philippe “Pip” Krongkon, a 2012 ANYTOWN delegate contributed his piece to the campaign by passing out “Hate Hate?” stickers at a high school football game. “Let’s fight against hate and bring peace to this world. I know we can accomplish this,” said Krongkon.
This year’s Citation Dinner also celebrated NCCJ’s 75th anniversary and the 25th anniversary of the ANYTOWN summer
Founded in 1937 as the Greensboro chapter of the national organization, The National Conference for Community and Justice of the Piedmont Triad is a human relations organization that promotes understanding and respect among all cultures, races and religions through advocacy, education and dialogue.