2018 Fannie Barrier Williams “Women of Courage” Award, Application and Nomination Package: The College at Brockport

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2018 Fannie Barrier Williams “Women of Courage” Award, Application and Nomination Package

The Center for Women & Gender Advisory Board announces the 2018 Fannie Barrier Williams “Women of Courage” Award, a call for nominations due Friday, January 26, 2018!

The Fannie Barrier Williams “Women of Courage” Award was created in 2014 by the Center for Women & Gender Advisory Board to raise awareness of Fannie Barrier Williams, the College’s first African-American female graduate. This award recognizes exceptional faculty, staff, students, alumni, and emeriti who have demonstrated a commitment to social justice with a special focus on the intersectionality of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, ability, religion, and age.

Frances “Fannie” Barrier Williams (1855-1944) was born February 12, 1855 in Brockport, NY. Fannie Barrier Williams was an educated reformer and social activist, becoming one of the most noteworthy African-American women of her time. As a member of the Class of 1870, Williams was the first African-American female graduate from the Brockport Normal School. Williams went on to pursue a career in teaching in the Washington, D. C. public school system. In addition to her role as an educator, Williams achieved many accolades, such as the first black member of the Chicago Women’s Club (CWC), perhaps one of the most influential group of white women in the country.

As a national representative for black women, Williams organized the Black Women’s Club Movement and was one of the co-founders of the Niagara Movement that grew to become the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). She was closely associated with Booker T. Washington, and Frederick Douglass was a family friend. She worked with people like W. E. B. DuBois and Ida B. Wells-Barnett, and other famous progressives of the 19th century. She was the only black woman to speak at the World Parliament of Religions on 1893, and engaged with gender and civil rights issues in many venues from the 1880s through the WWI era. Williams authored more than 50 articles in major periodicals and delivered as many speeches to both black and white audiences and was considered a major influence in shaping black life during the Progressive Era. She returned to Brockport in 1927 and lived a quiet life until her death in 1944. In 2002, Fannie was inducted into the Hall of Heritage, the highest honor for Brockport alumni.

Award Criteria: This award is given on a biennial basis to one applicant in each of the following four categories:

a) student,

b) faculty/ staff,

c) alumni and

d) emeriti

The award recipient must exemplify leadership and activism towards a social justice cause and demonstrate a thorough understanding of and appreciation for equality and justice. Successful nominees will have demonstrated participation and contributions to a specific area of social justice and will have a robust collection of accomplishments that validate the nominee’s success.

In addition, nominees must have demonstrated contributions to the College’s 2017-2022 Strategic Plan, Building a Better Brockport: Together, with emphasis on the contributions to embrace diversity and achieve a more inclusive campus community.


To nominate an individual in one of the following categories (student, faculty/staff, alumni, or emeriti), submit a letter of nomination and two letters of support. Self-nominations are also accepted. The letter of nomination and letters of support should address the award criteria and specifically describe the nominee’s contributions to social justice causes.

Center for Women & Gender co-chairs will appoint a nomination review committee from members of the College community. The review committee will make the final decision on award recipient(s) in the four categories.

Award Recipients:

The Fannie Barrier Williams “Women of Courage” Award recipients will be honored and recognized at the Biennial Fannie Barrier Williams Luncheon, Celebration and Award Ceremony hosted by the Center for Women & Gender Advisory Board during the spring 2018 semester. Award recipients and nominators will be informed by the board in advance of the luncheon.

Nomination packages are due Friday, January 26, 2018 either via email at klogsdon@brockport.edu or by delivery to Allen Administration Building, 6th floor, EMSA, ATTN: Karen Logsdon.



Karen Logsdon, PhD, klogsdon@brockport.edu or 395-5042

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