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The USC Institute for Families in Society and the USC African American Studies Program are pleased to announce the 2018 Andrew Billingsley Faculty Award recipient, Dr. Gloria Boutte, and the 2018 Andrew Billingsley Community Leadership Award recipient, Mr. Darion McCloud. The awards will be presented in conjunction with the Robert J. Smalls Lecture Series on November 14, 2018

Please join us in congratulating this year's distinguished award recipients.

Gloria Boutte, PhDGloria Boutte, PhD, is a professor at the University of South Carolina. For more than three decades, Dr. Boutte's scholarship, teaching, and service have focused on equity pedagogies and teaching for social justice. She has served as Department Chair and held a distinguished endowed chair for four years. Dr. Boutte is the author/editor of numerous publications and four books: (1) African Diaspora Literacy: The Heart of Transformation in K-12 Schools and Teacher Education (forthcoming) (2) Educating African American Students: And how are the children; (3) Multicultural Education: Raising Consciousness and (4) Resounding Voices: School Experiences of People From Diverse Ethnic Backgrounds. She has received nearly $2 million in grants and has more than 90 publications. Additionally, she has presented nationally and internationally on equity, community, curriculum, instruction, and diversity issues. She has received prestigious awards such as the Fulbright Scholar and Fulbright Specialist. Dr. Boutte is the founder of the Center of Excellence for the Education and Equity of African American Students (CEEEAAS). She has presented her work internationally in London, Cameroon, Colombia, China, Sierra Leone, Ghana, England, Zambia, Botswana, South Africa, Australia, Guyana, Jamaica, Mexico, New Zealand, Nigeria, and Canada.

Darion McCloud Darion McCloud is the co-founder and creative director of the NiA Company, the creator and Captain of Story Squad, a Riley Institute Diversity Fellow, a Leo Twiggs Scholar, and a former President of the Friends of African American Art and Culture affiliate of the Columbia Museum of Art. Darion is an Indie Grits Fellow and a teaching artist as well as a performer and consultant working with students and all age adults. As a professional storyteller, he has performed in venues as varied as prisons and Governor's Mansions though he may be most fond of being the favorite of many school children. Darion's directing credits include The Whipping Man, Intimate Apparel, Our Lady of 121st Street, Br'er Rabbit, Fat Pig, What'chamacallit!, and Knock Me A Kiss. Some favorite roles include Macduff in MacBeth, Othello in Othello, Levee in Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Bernard in Boys in the Band, Actor 5 in Transparency of Val, and Other in The White Problem, among others.

These biennial awards are designed to honor one faculty member and one member of the Columbia community who each embody the legacy of Distinguished Professor Emeritus Dr. Andrew Billingsley and his scholarship on behalf of African American families. The Faculty Award is specifically for individuals at the USC Columbia campus and the Community Leadership Award is for individuals who have served in the metro Columbia area for three years or more. In addition to these awards, the Andrew Billingsley Fund has been established at the University to advocate for and support activities that reflect Dr. Billingsley’s outstanding scholarship.

About Dr. Andrew Billingsley

(PhD, Social Policy and Research, Brandeis University; MA, Sociology, University of Michigan; MS, Social Service [MSW], Boston University)

By name and focus, the awards and the fund pay tribute to the work of Distinguished Professor Emeritus Dr. Andrew Billingsley, whose extensive body of professional research has brought important focus to African American families. During his tenure at USC, Dr, Billingsley served as the Senior Scholar in Residence at the Institute for Families in Society and professor of Sociology and African American studies at USC. Dr. Billingsley was the former Chair of Family Studies at the University of Maryland and also served as President of Morgan State University and Vice-President for Academic Affairs at Howard University. A former Fulbright Scholar to Ghana, Dr. Billingsley is the recipient of the DuBois-Johnson-Frazier Award from the American Sociological Association and the Distinguished Scholar Award from the Association of Black Sociologists. He was also featured in the PBS documentary Blacks in the Civil War, narrated by Morgan Freeman.

Dr. Billingsley’s latest work is Yearning to Breathe Free: Robert Smalls of South Carolina and His Families published by University of South Carolina Press. He also is the author of several books of Sociology including the seminal work Black Families in White America and others such as Climbing Jacob’s Ladder:The Enduring Legacy of African American Families; Children of the Storm; and Mighty Like a River:The Black Church and Social Reform, published by Oxford University Press.

Previous Billingsley Award Winners

The Institute for Families in Society has in past years awarded research support in honor of Dr. Billingsley and to recognize selected faculty and community leaders for their work to improve the lives of African American families. Previous recipients have included Dr. Rhonda White-Johnson, Dr. Shauna Cooper, Dr. Tisha Felder, and Mr. James T. McLawhorn, Jr.