UNCF Welcomes Vice President Harris to the 77th Anniversary National "A Mind Is…" ® Gala Virtually, Supporting both HBCUs and Students

Thursday, 04. March 2021 16:50

Washington, D.C., March 04, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The 77th annual National UNCF (United Negro College Fund) "A Mind Is…" ® Gala is switching gears and moving online this year, set for 7 p.m., Thursday, March 4. The newly virtual fundraiser will be hosted by acclaimed actor, producer, and graduate of UNCF-member HBCU Morehouse College, Samuel L. Jackson. The celebration of UNCF's founding will also be highlighted by Stephanie Mills and Chaka Khan's special performances. 

The evening's honorees include Vice President Kamala Harris receiving UNCF's Frederick D. Patterson award for her rich contributions to HBCUs and inspiration to HBCU students throughout her public service.  Also receiving the Patterson award, the highest award for the organization, are U.S. Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC) and UNCF Chairman of the Board William Stasior.

This year's National UNCF "A Mind Is…" ® Gala President's Circle sponsors include Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and Amazon, with more than 500 guests expected to attend the fundraising event—marking 77 years since UNCF's founding. The Gala will include dignitaries, civic leaders, foundations, corporations, and HBCU alumni, among others, all coming together to raise funds to benefit talented and deserving students across the United States who lack the financial support to get to and through college.

The evening will be hosted by Honorary National Gala Chair Washington, DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser, and event co-chairs are William Stasior and Dr. Michael L. Lomax, UNCF President, and CEO.

Other event sponsors include ExxonMobil, Kaiser Permanente, Exelon/Pepco, CCS Fundraising, American Express, Procter & Gamble, Walton Family Foundation, Walmart, Wells Fargo, AlixPartners, Reed Smith LLP, Merck, and U.S. Bank.

"We are delighted to host all of our honorees, including HBCU alumnus Vice President Harris," said Lomax. "UNCF has fueled HBCUs with vital resources to educate generations of African American and other minority students. During an unprecedented time in our history compounded by COVID-19 and racial disparities, our students and institutions are faced with enormous challenges now more than ever. We are at risk of washing away a generation of talented and deserving African American and minority students. We need as many donations as possible right now because the students we help now will be our next generation of doctors, nurses, biologists, virologists, epidemiologists—the pandemic frontliners of the future. We invite everyone across the United States to join our 77th annual National' A Mind Is…' ® Gala to help ensure better futures for us all."

A recent UNCF survey of more than 5,000 students across 17 HBCUs found that many are dealing with difficulties such as sick family members, trouble paying bills and general stress from the ongoing pandemic and recent protests against police brutality. More than ever, support is needed as students and institutions are faced with challenges, including COVID-19 and racial disparities.

To learn more, to donate, or to register for the event, please go to UNCF.org/NationalGala. For more information, contact Tanya R. Sweeney, area development director, at tsweeney@uncf.org.


About UNCF
UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation's largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students' education and development through scholarships and other programs, supports and strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically Black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20% of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized trademark, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste." ® Learn more at UNCF.org or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.


Monique LeNoir
United Negro College Fund, Inc. (UNCF)
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