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Living History: A Tribute to Excellence

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Samantha Johnson, Director of the Ingersoll Community Center, for Community Service. The Barclays Center sponsored award was presented by Brooklyn Nets’ Jeff Scott, Senior Director of Community Relations, Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment  and Brandon Stokes, President of LIU Brooklyn’s Student Government Association.Excellence among members of the African American community took centerstage at Kumble Theater for the Performing Arts, Thursday, February 18 as LIU Brooklyn honored distinguished men and women in several fields. The award ceremony dubbed “Living History: A Tribute to Excellence”, formed part of the campus’ Black History Month highlight, and recognized seven honorees for outstanding work in Pharmacy, Nursing, Media, Music, Athletics, Radio and Community Service.

The profound impact made by the honorees in their individual fields, as well as throughout other spheres of influence was verbalized by LIU Brooklyn student leaders who presented the awards. More than mere recognition for their professional work, the honorees’ achievements resounded the rich legacy held by men and women of color, which serve to inspire younger generations. Graceful in acceptance, they expressed their own gratefulness for having the opportunity to impact lives. Dr. Craig Ruffin who has received numerous other awards including the High Honor of Distinguished Alumnus from LIU, was recognized for his stellar contribution to Pharmacy. On receiving the award, a tearful Dr. Ruffin encouraged attendees to “dream big dreams for yourself and your future”. New York Public Radio’s Nikki Johnson, was awarded for outstanding achievement in Media. While praising the role others have had in her success, Mrs. Johnson highlighted that “my passion is to give service”. Similar sentiments were echoed by fellow awardees Jacqueline Boyd (Nursing), Kenyatta Beasley (Music), Tracye Rawls-Martin (Athletics), Richard Hunt (Radio) and Samantha Johnson (Community Service), several of whom are also faculty members at LIU Brooklyn. The inspiration provided by these honorees to students, colleagues, friends and community members was felt throughout the evening as eruptions of loud cheers were frequently heard from the audience. Assistant Professor, and Director of LIU Brooklyn’s Athletic Training Program Tracye Rawls-Martin underscored her tremendous satisfaction in touching lives. “The greatest pleasure is to help educate students” she said.

The ceremony’s final award was to Samantha Johnson, Director of the Ingersoll Community Center, for Community Service. The Barclays Center sponsored award was presented by Brooklyn Nets’ Jeff Scott, Senior Director of Community Relations, Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment  and Brandon Stokes, President of LIU Brooklyn’s Student Government Association. Miss Johnson was recognized for her work in providing sustained leadership, and development programmes to residents of the Ingersoll Community for the past six years.

Grammy award winning musical director Swiss Chris, and renowned singer, songwriter and producer Crystal Johnson were among several performers who provided the evening’s musical entertainment. LIU TV’s General Manager, Sienna Jeffries chaired the proceedings. The event was organized by LIU TV and LIU Brooklyn’s Campus Media Coalition.


Written by: Kediesha Watkis

Posted 03/18/2016

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