UGA’s first African-American graduate, Mary Frances Early, will be honored with a community reception Jan 13 at 1 p.m. in the cafeteria of J.J. Harris Elementary Charter School, 2300 Danielsville Road. She also will be the featured speaker at the eighth annual Freedom Breakfast on Jan. 14 at 7:30 a.m. in the Grand Hall of the Tate Student Center.
Open to the public, the reception is hosted by the College of Education and the Institute for African American Studies. The elementary school’s orchestra and chorus will perform. A group from UGA’s Hugh Hodgson School of Music also is scheduled to perform. Nancy Denson, mayor of Athens-Clarke County; Andy Horne, dean of the education college; Derrick Alridge, director of the Institute for African American Studies; and Xernona Thomas, the school’s principal, are among those who will give remarks. Early also will speak briefly.
We wanted to host the event in the community because of Ms. Early’s commitment to public education,” said Jenny Penney Oliver, a senior academic professional in counseling and human development and a member of the event’s planning committee.
J.J. Harris Elementary Charter School was chosen for this event because the school is a professional development partnership school with the College of Education.
The next day Early will speak on “Celebrating Courage” with a focus on the works of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Freedom Breakfast. This year’s theme is “The Power of the Dream: Celebrating Courage.” UGA President Michael F. Adams will present the President’s Fulfilling the Dream Awards to individuals from the university, Athens-Clarke County and surrounding areas who strive to make a reality of King’s dream of equality and justice.
Tickets are $18 each or $144 for a table of eight. All tickets must be purchased in advance at the Office of Institutional Diversity in the Holmes-Hunter Academic Building.