Oregon State University is celebrating its 40th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration this month with a series of events. One of the most popular is the annual peace breakfast. The event features the presentation of a number of awards to OSU-affiliated individuals who have made a significant difference to their community in the spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
The following is a list of this year’s award recipients:
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Alumni Legacy Award: Established in partnership with the OSU Alumni Association, this award recognizes alumni who have demonstrated a deep and abiding commitment to social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion, and who exemplify and enrich OSU’s values of community, diversity, respect and social responsibility in their broader community and/or organization.
This year’s recipient was Eric Knox, Class of 1989. Knox is the founder and executive director of HOLLA — a nonprofit mentoring organization for Black and Brown youth.
Oscar Humberto Montemayor Award: Over a three-decade career at Oregon State, the late Oscar Humberto Montemayor served the OSU community with diligence and grace. He was limitlessly dedicated to the success of students. The Oscar Humberto Montemayor Award honors an Oregon State student who embodies Oscar’s ethos of selfless service; steady, strong, considerate leadership; and a trailblazing spirit and heart.
This year’s recipient was Cazandra Aporbo, a biology student at the OSU-Cascades campus.
Frances Dancy Hooks Award: The Frances Dancy Hooks Award was first awarded in 1994 when Frances Dancy Hooks, a longtime civil rights activist, and her husband Reverend Benjamin Hooks, former executive director of the NAACP, spoke at the peace breakfast. The award recognizes Oregon State students, staff or faculty who exemplify Frances Dancy Hooks’ work of building bridges across cultures, showing courage in promoting diversity and proudly “walking the talk.”
This year’s recipients were Tarron Anderson, an equity associate with the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access, and Mateo Olmos, a senior studying human development and family sciences, who is also on the OSU wrestling team.
Phyllis S. Lee Award: To honor Phyllis S. Lee, former director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs, then-President Edward J. Ray created this award in 2004. It honors an Oregon State community member who exemplifies Phyllis S. Lee’s commitment to social justice and the teachings of Martin Luther King Jr.
This year’s recipient was Samantha Chisholm Hatfield, an instructor in the Department of Agricultural Education and Agricultural Sciences. Her specializations include traditional ecological knowledge perspectives and Indigenous culture issues.