Judge Nathaniel R. Jones
BALTIMORE, MD – The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) today announced that tickets are now on sale for the 101st Spingarn Medal dinner as part of its 2016 National Convention to be held in Cincinnati, Ohio, July 16-20.
Thousands of NAACP members are expected to attend this year’s convention under the theme, “Our Lives Matter, Our Votes Count” and the Spingarn Medal Award dinner will take place on Wednesday, July 20 to close the annual convention. Tickets to the Spingarn Dinner can be purchased on the NAACP Convention website here.
This year’s recipient of the prestigious award is Ohio native and retired Judge Nathaniel R. Jones, recognizing him for his commitment to equality and civil rights. Jones, a native of Youngstown, Ohio, served as general counsel for the NAACP from 1969 until he was appointed by President Carter to United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 1979.
An internationally renowned civil rights activist, Judge Jones played an important role in furthering the abolition of apartheid in South Africa, acting as a consultant in drafting that nation’s 1993 constitution with Nelson Mandela upon Mandela’s release after 27 years of imprisonment.
“Judge Jones’ commitment to civil rights and social action embodies the spirit and mission of the NAACP,” said Leon W. Russell, vice chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors. “His efforts to end school segregation, defend affirmative action and his continued work as a federal judge deserves the NAACP’s highest honor.”
The Spingarn Medal was instituted in 1914 by the late and former NAACP Chairman J.E. Spingarn to recognize and honor annually a person of African descent for outstanding achievement. Past awardees have included Sidney Poitier, Colin Powell, Oprah Winfrey, Langston Hughes and the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The NAACP’s 107th National Convention will feature workshops, discussions and speakers highlighting voter education, voter protection and voter mobilization. The NAACP convention will also include celebrity appearances, community-based events and seminars with top activists, as well as the national competition of the NAACP’s Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) program.
The Spingarn Medal Award dinner, part of the NAACP’s Freedom Fund Banquet, will take place at 7:30PM on July 20, 2016 at the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.
For a full convention schedule and list of activities, visit www.naacpconvention.org.
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our six “Game Changer” issue areas here.