Height Award Honors Judge

— Lyn Stoesen, News Staff


The Intercultural Cancer Council has awarded the Dr. Dorothy I. Height Lifetime Achievement Award to Judge Gabrielle Kirk McDonald. NASW Executive Director Elizabeth J. Clark co-chaired the jury that selected the award recipient.

McDonald is a highly accomplished civil rights lawyer, law professor and federal judge who also served as president of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

McDonald graduated first in her class from the Howard University School of Law in 1966, and in 1979 was nominated by President Jimmy Carter to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, becoming the first African American appointed in Texas.

Clark co-chaired the Height Jury with Reginald C. S. Ho and Sharon Barrett. The Height Jury reviewed nominations during a December meeting held at the National Council of Negro Women National Headquarters.

The award honors Height, its first recipient, a pioneering civil rights activist and social worker. It is presented biennially "in recognition of outstanding national service in the promotion of social justice or furthering the health of those in minority and medically underserved communities."

Those who receive the award are presented with a specially commissioned sculpture by artist Tina Allen, and a $2,000 cash contribution is made to a chosen institution or charity in the name of the honoree. Previous award recipients include Byllye Y. Avery, Wilma P. Mankiller, Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, John Lewis, Gilbert H. Friedel and Harold Freeman.

The award will be presented on April 4 at the biennial meeting of the Intercultural Cancer Council in Washington, D.C.